Due to the nomadic nature of my childhood...okay that's a little dramatic...I moved a whole bunch as a kid, I've always felt like home was really a physical place for me. I've always been a little bit unsure where home is. I usually default to cute answers like;
"Home is where your rump rests."
"Home is where ever I'm with you."
"Home is where I keep all my stuff."
John without a doubt has a home. I would even suggest it's his home base. It's a small town in Manitoba. It's the house he grew up in. It's the place where he still has his name on one of the bedroom doors (spelled wrong but whatever at least he could get stuff with his name on it!) It's where he suddenly fits in and reverts back to "Pierson Johnathan." I see moments of Pierson Johnathan when we're in Switzerland. Just faint glimpses of a boy who is still excited by an ice cream pail of his moms homemade nuts and bolt (aka Chex mix.)
Then someone pointed out in a comment on one of my instagram photos (Hi Prairie_Kat) that I was super lucky to have two homes. I had captioned this photo, "on the way home from home." I didn't really think much of it until I saw the comment. They were right...I do have two home. Sure I might be overcompensating due to the lack of home in the traditional sense as a kid (I've always been an overachiever) but I like the sound of having two homes.
One home is flat. Flat. Flat Flat. The kind of flat that makes you feel like pretty small in a giant world. The kind of flat that lets you see who is on their way to your house from 5 km's away. You can drive some where and your GPS reads "next right in 100 miles." It's also cold cold cold cold in the winter. The kind cold that hurts. The kind of cold that made me cry a little when I crossed Main street because well...that plan wasn't very well thought out. I don't have to operate in two languages or worry about coming off like a weirdo North American. There I'm just a weirdo. It's where I can just get in my car and know where I'm going. No need to google anything and the biggest issue I might have is someone turning left on an unprotected green (still hate that!) It's where I can rant and curse and swear about the lack of slow plowing, the icy sidewalks and the Polo Park expansion without having to guess whether I have my facts straight. It is my birth right to complain about the drivers, the narrow residential streets in the downtown, the late running public transportation and parking at The Forks. Home is prairie sky, wind chill and half way trees.
Other home is across the ocean and in a different language. It's where John and I have built our lives and there is not a straight line in sight. It's where I have google map everything and always have back up plans in case I miss a train. I lug things up hill...both ways and often doubt my translations. I am polite to the point where it's almost to polite for a Canadian because I fear coming off like a rude North American. It sit on my balcony and look at mountains that don't block my view but create it. It's a view people save their home life for and I get to see it every morning while I run for a bus that will take me to work. It's where I brag about the chocolate, the cheese, the bread and the availability of cheap win. I get stuck behind slow walkers, moms with battle wagons for strollers and tourists who ooo and aaaah at Einsteins former apartment. The baby eating statue still makes me laugh. Home is mountain ranges I can never remember the name of, explaining wind chill and church bells.