i’ve always said that home is where nate and the kitties are. that’s not a lie.
but when i drive northward to central minnesota, i can feel my heartstrings relax and reach out to the countryside. i find the familiar rolling hills, the clustered farms, the trees that abut fields that abut more trees and more trees, and the occasional lake or pond. these aren’t the valley bluffs or the pond masquerading as a lake or the five trees lining the edge of farmland before stretching into another expanse of crop.
when i am northerly, and i have been more than once recently, i exhale a sense of relief: i am home.
last time i was there, my friend melissa drove from fargo to meet me for lunch. we talked about how the st cloud area, for both of us, always feels like we’re coming home. she’d only lived in st cloud for two years. maybe it’s because this was the first place that we both lived after moving away from our parents’ homes. or we want to relive the halcyon days of college (although not really the case for her).
the people look familiar (very german). the orderliness and cleanliness is satisfying. even the shoppers get me. (seriously – i went to target in st cloud last time i was up, and it was uncanny how differently people shop up there than down here. they all shop like i do.)
and then i come home to nate and the kitties. they are home. but i watch the countryside as i drive to work or to run into town, and while it’s known to me, it’s not familiar. rochester is nice looking but it’s not orderly nor is it clean. the people (caucasian) look more angular and different (not too german).
i like my house. i like my job. i really like the people i work with. but. but but but.