This is a repost from September 2014. I had forgotten about it until it showed up as a post that was recently viewed, which means maybe somebody googled Cuckoo in Coombs and accidentally found cuckoo in Cedarvale. I still wonder sometimes where home is, so I decided to repost.
I’m not always sure where I belong. The obvious answer is the farm in northern BC where Lone Wolf and I live. I’m happy here. I feel peaceful, comfortable, and nourished, body and soul. But when I visit Vancouver Island, where I was born, where I lived for 47 years, where my family lives, I feel a tug. A voice just behind my left ear clamours, “This is home.”
I hardly recognize the place. The landscape changes from one visit to the next. The cities and the island highway are noisy, crowded, hectic, hot. But just a few steps away it’s blue as big as the ocean, it’s verdant, it’s textured, it’s a tapestry. It’s home.
Or is it?
I go back and forth. And happily, I can go back and forth. Two or three times a year, I feed my spirit with things the north can’t offer no matter how much I love it: the company of my family, Les Misérables at Chemainus Theatre, fine Italian food at Cuckoo in Coombs, islands floating in the Georgia Strait, lush Victoria gardens, copper arbutus bark, a certain blue and white house on the corner of Southgate and Adelaide streets, fresh Italian plums plucked from a tree in a friend’s backyard. Not just any friend—the one who’s known me for 56 years, who remembers being wide-eyed kids with me, who stayed in our hometown and made a life there. A good life. A peaceful life. A life not so terribly different from mine in some ways. A life I could have chosen.
But I didn’t.
I choose this.
This is the place where I stand every day and give thanks: for my beautiful life, for my family, my friends, my dog, my garden, my work, my home.