Monday, July 29, 2013

a tale of two cities.

For years now I have found myself constantly mulling over the notion of home--what makes a home, how are we affected by our homes--the physical walls in which we live, the people with whom we make a home, and the cities in which we reside.  A dear friend summed it up as I long for a warm place to curl up and call home. I dream of a quiet life, simple and happy.

It's funny how different cities can move a person.  I moved to New Orleans last August thinking that I would make a temporary home--I just didn't know how temporary it would turn out to be. New Orleans was not a place for me to reside, to have a permanent address and a job and live my daily life. It wasn't the quiet life I had been looking for. But I so struggled with this because New Orleans has moved me in such a spiritual way. I, to steal Tennessee Williams' sentiment, really do consider that little city to be my spiritual home. I am always so creatively inspired by New Orleans. She always moves me in such a deeply personal way, and I find myself longing for her in ways I don't long for any other city.

In contrast, while visiting Chicago this summer, I imagined myself living in one of those beautiful homes (more realistically a tiny apartment, but a girl can daydream), waking up, making breakfast, taking my pup (still daydreaming) out on a walk, hopping the trains and making my way through the city. I could see myself curled up on the couch, enjoying nights in while the ground outside rests covered in snow.

I find it hard to put these feelings into words, to explain to those who ask. I can see it on their furrowed brows, read the questions in their eyes. New Orleans has taught me, and is still teaching me, that sometimes what's important is the parts that make up a whole, not necessarily the whole picture. The small moments, those parts, are where we find happiness.

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