18 May 2012

There's No Place(?) Like Home...

We have broken an anecdotal record here at the Marathon Marina: most packages ever delivered to a slipholder.  In another post, I'm taking up the issue of hobbies for live-aboards.  One of Jane's, we realized the other day, one that has carried over from our land lubbing days, is online shopping.  Since we can only get packages while in port, Jane buys all the items she's been putting into her online shopping cart for the past however long.  It's like Christmas morning meets Groundhog Day.

The day before yesterday, we got a clear acrylic tray which we're using as a spice rack.   While cleaning off that thin film of grease that always coats the tops of spice jars, I let out a quick chuckle.  To Jane's query regarding what I found funny about wiping off spice jars, I said with what felt like a sad smile, "spice jars always get that coat of grease on them, even on a boat.  It's something familiar.  So little is here."

The guys from SALT, who have been on JOY for so long now, they're practically crew are pretty much finished now.  They would have been finished sooner but we kept adding back those last few things on our original list.  Yesterday, our iPod integrated marine stereo arrived.  We were going to toss "install new stereo" onto the tail end of their list, but a potent combination of impatience (the stereo that was on JOY when we bought her didn't accomodate iPods, so the 626 song "boat track" we so lovingly compiled before we left has been shelved all this time)  and chagrin (it's embarrassing to own a boat and be so inept at all things electronic) inspired us to give hooking it up ourselves a go.

Drumroll, please...

WE DID IT!  Not only did we get it wired up, we got the cockpit and cabin speakers zoned separately.  I know, right?  It was late in the evening.  I was leaning close to one of the speakers holding a wire in place that I'd accidentally disconnected the day before.  Our music filled my ears then tears my eyes.  God, I had no idea how much I'd been missing our tunes.  It was the second time in two days that something felt familiar, felt like...home, maybe?

This has started me to thinking.  It's sounds so trite, so cliche, but maybe it's true. Home is where the heart is.  On second thought, it may be true, maybe, but it's also too vague.  It's like that square/rectangle relationship.  You remember it: all squares are rectangles but not all rectangles are squares.  Home is where the heart is but not all things of the heart are home.  So which part of the heart is home?

It's not the first time I've pondered this.  Before we left, the question nagged somewhat.  I've got a nomadic streak; it's an emotional truth for me that going is home.  But that's restricted to going in the literal sense, the actual transiting from A to B.  I don't know why, but being "on the road" (which didn't used to be metaphorical) just feels right.  This question was about staying put elsewhere.  What would it feel like?  Would it feel like "home"?  Would bringing our "house" with us wherever we went make a difference?  Is feeling "right" the same as feeling "at home?"  At the end of the day double entendre intended), what is home?  Is it a physical place, is it a nation, a region, a neighborhood, or something else altogether?  Which leads to the wider questions.  Is home as in "We've lived on Walton's Mountain for fifteen generations," an obsolete concept in a hyperlinked world?  Can "home" be anywhere?  Or can home be a non-concept, is it the idea of "home" itself becoming outmoded?  Do/Will people gravitate to physical places or does/will it just seem antiquated?

As I chew on these weighty matters (speaking of hobbies), I'm tossing this out to you.  I want to know what you think.  What's "home" to you or do you even care for the idea?

As for me, my working definition of "home" is this.  Home is not external; it's internal, it's a state of mind.  It is wherever I remind myself of the me I'm accustomed to.  I remember feeling generally competent, smart even, at times, handy too.  I liked that about me.  But none of the ways I'm smart or accomplished are applicable to this life.  I'm continually amazed at how irrelevant my stores of knowledge are.  The me I am now doesn't seem familiar at all.  I miss that "home".

7 comments:

  1. I would just like to clarify that we don't call it SHOPPING any more. It is called PROVISIONING. I am an excellent PROVISIONER.

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  2. Home is where the heart is.....and thanks for giving Shiraz/More Joy a facelift. She is a good girl and definitely deserves it! Have fun. Watch the weather. Already one named storm off the coast.

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    1. Yes, we're being VERY good to Joy, hoping that she will be good to us. We tell everyone she has already been around once, as Shiraz. Re: the weather. We have been in Marathon for SIX WEEKS now. Not sure if we remember how to get off the dock. But you're right, we are feeling the pressure. South-er and south-er for us. Very soon, now....

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  3. Home is comfort. That can be food,people, animals, music books, lots of things give comfort.

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  4. I bet if I were to conduct a survey, "home = comfort" and "home = safety" would vie for the two most popular responses. It is telling how many of the classics take up the theme of the hero who goes on an epic journey and comes back home to safety, familiarity and comfort.

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  5. Simple, Home is where your cats are! LC

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    1. Even when they pee on you.

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