This week I have been homesick for the West Coast. I have missed the moderate winter and the sun every day. I have missed the mild weather and the ability to take kids to the park in February and not freeze. I have missed my family and my friends. I miss the general outlook of people who live on the West Coast and the melting pot of my friends there; French, Canadian, Belgian, Brazilian, Spanish, Mexican, Vietnamese, American, Chinese, Korean, Hmong, Iranian, and the list goes on. I miss the early spring that doesn't seem possible unless you are from California and then it is taken for granted. I miss the quality and quantity of Asian restaurants. I miss walking down the street and hearing 10 different languages being spoken in the same block. I miss walking my kids to school and walking back home with them after school. I even miss the bicycle riding singing Chinese lady, warbling vibrato and all.
I spoke with someone at work today that was calling from San Francisco and I had a physical yearning to hear her talk about the traffic on Market Street and how difficult it was to find parking and navigate the traffic and how she would never do it again. I told her I understood because I was from there. She could have cared less.
I was talking to a co-worker today and I was telling her about a wedding I am going to in October and how she should come with me because she has never been to California and all the fun we would have and she laughed and said, "you are such a California girl". But she is right, I am a California girl. And even though I live here now and there are so many good things about this place, I still so strongly miss the old place. And while I don't miss it all the time when I do miss it, it hits me in the gut and sticks around and makes me wonder if we will ever find ourselves back there again. I know they say you can never go back to the way things were but if we went back would it feel like starting over or would it feel like we had never left? And if I went back there, would I miss this place, the new place?
I've live in a lot of places in my life, but I always made it back to the West Coast. That was my center of gravity. That was my home base. I have a new home base now and it doesn't always feel like home base. . . . at least not this week.