That Elusive Sense of Home.

Once upon a time, home was the smell of Samsara perfume and the gentle chink of golden bangles on a slim, tanned wrist. Home was whipped chocolate cake and making Lego brick forts at 5am. It was sunshine in laundry baskets and tents in the back garden and sheets of polystyrene covered in washing up liquid for a makeshift slide.
Home used to be a cloud of music emanating from a downstairs window as guitars were strummed and voices collided within the warm glow of family.
Home became the scent of damp; an over-powering mix of last night’s smoke and a refusal to pay the heating bill. It became the presence of a strong arm around my waist and an alarm which could never be silenced. It was singing loudly in the shower and coming back drunk to find fresh homemade ricotta. Home was where the fights began and ended, behind those proverbial closed doors. It was where bacon sandwiches fixed broken promises and stolen golden syrup could tack together a broken heart. Home was falling asleep the minute the movie began, and waking the minute it finished, just as the last of the food was gone. It was where you still ring whenever you are lost.
This year, home became a box on a block; a window-side office cubicle, that moment in Times Square where the bustle passes over you and you become one with the noise. Home became a movie set, the driver’s seat of a wrong-sided car or wherever I could find an onion bagel with olive cream cheese. For one long weekend, it was a dorm-room in Cambridge, a close proximity to the strong arm I had previously left behind.
Supposedly, where I am now is home, but it no longer feels like it. This sleepy little village has aged in my absence and the gaping holes I left behind have since been patched. The smell of Samsara has long departed and the bangles are now silver and less tinny. Mice ate the Lego fort many years ago and the guitars have (for now) been silenced. High School is long gone, as are the people I once knew within it. The smell of Lenor is comforting, but disturbing to one now so committed to Tide.
Every morning I wake up to the same mantra: “I really want to go home”. I would so desperately like to think I know where that feeling is. I believe that “home” is no longer a place, but a person. It’s a feeling, a presence, a piece of mind. But one day, I hope my home will no longer be that person. One day, I hope my home will be me.

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