A few thoughts on "home" 1.21.09

31 Jan

The daily work commute was painfully long again today. An accident here, a stall there and before you know it I’ve spent damned near two hours trying to get to work. This always leaves me alone with my own thoughts which always brings up the same question… “What am I doing???”

Why in God’s name do I live in one place, work in another, and continue to call a small town 3 hours away “home.”

It is a constant battle. If I’m in St. Louis I’m wishing I was in Streator. When I’m in Streator the reasons why I left are very apparent…like say…where the hell would I work? But yet I still find myself calling it “home.” We went to see The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (it was fabulous) and in one scene Benjamin returns to his childhood home for the first time after being away for an extended period of time. It was a scene I’ve most definitely lived… a feeling of almost unsettling familiarity, as if you’ve never left. But still something’s different. And you look around to figure out what’s changed, trying to figure out why something feels “off.” Then, as Benjamin says in the movie, you realize the only thing that has changed, is you.

And changed I might be but I find it hard to believe there will come a day when I don’t call Streator home. Yet I can say with certainty, I won’t ever live in Streator again.

Home, I’ve decide, is about people and comfort. You might have noticed we listed “Streator people and Streator bars” in our list of favorite things. This is because Streator people are not like other people. People who have always lived there don’t notice it. They’ll tell you its a “small town thing.” It isn’t. It is a Streator thing. I’ve been to plenty of small towns and most of the people I’ve met in the last several years are small town folk. But they ain’t Streator folk. And while the Streator way, if you will, might not be the best way – whenever I’m home to visit there’s something very comforting about it.

There are days I miss Streator and the people there so badly it hurts. There are days when I would cut off my left arm for a big plate of Teke’s chicken wings, a Joe’s pizza or a Broadway Tenderloin. And then there are days when it snows in Streator and is a mild 50 degrees in StL and I’m damn glad I left.

And so it always ends the same way. I get through traffic and I make it to work no more sure than I was two hours ago if I’m coming or going. If I’m home or away. If I’m in a permanent place or a transition phase. But I try to remember that it doesn’t matter. I know where
(or maybe more importantly who) home is. And who says you can’t go home?

well i’ll never be a stranger
and i’ll never be alone
wherever we’re together
that’s my home

Later Alligators – Mags

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3 Responses to “A few thoughts on "home" 1.21.09”

  1. carol February 9, 2009 at 9:12 pm #

    hey mags, there will always be a Broadway Tenderloin for you when you come home….anytime,,,just call !!

    Love ya,
    carol

  2. Shelsey Kennedy February 24, 2009 at 6:34 pm #

    Maggie,
    Don’t forget about your favorite individual to visit when your home me. We do miss you and Zac and always look forward to your visits.
    Love
    Shels

    • maggieandzac February 24, 2009 at 6:44 pm #

      You are most definitely my favorite : )

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