What...and where...is home?

October 20, 2009

Can’t decide where “home” is. Home is supposed to be where the heart is, but my heart seems to be in two places now…I have never spent more than 6 weeks away from Bangalore before, and my heart seems to have put down another set of roots, without weakening the first set in any way.

When I decided to spend a longish time period in the US, I resolutely set my mind against thinking of several things that I would miss from India…and I did have a wonderful time there.

But when I stepped into the flat early this morning, when I spoke to friends and felt the warmth of their affection, when I lay down in my OWN bed and just luxuriated in the feeling…..the emotions I had denied for six months just came rushing back, and I wept…I don’t know why….I can’t call it happiness when I miss GD and my family so very much that that also hurts….

I did miss, I realize, the warmth of my friends’ affection here. Everyone needs friends of their own. I must say that….SOME… of DnA’s friends in St.L, did treat us like their own friends and talked to us as equals without relegating us to the “boring geriatrics” shelf…but the fact remains that I had not been able to make many friends of my own (though I certainly managed to make one good friend, Dawn, with whom I enjoyed the Muny, the Zoo, the Balloon Glow, and one lovely long chat at home!) and it was only when I came back that I realized how much I had been missing this.

But…you can now call me Miss Deponti instead of Ms Deponti, as missing is going to be one of the main themes of my life. I am going to miss…first, and foremost… MAGITKU….that Most-Adorable-Girl-In-The-Known-Universe! From “Biddly” she’s moved to becoming “Boodi” for some reason (the more I love someone, the more nicknames I give them. A has about 22 nicknames, each worse than the last.) Boodi just happened, but it means “old woman” in Bengali! I also call her “Titumi”…, does this word mean anything in Japanese?

I also miss…the wonderful

Public Library

With the pathetic library facilities that I have in Bangalore, it was so lovely to be able to browse through books, magazines, CD’s and so on, from around the world. The library allows a member to borrows AS MANY BOOKS AND CD’S as one likes, for a period of 3 weeks, which can be extended twice. Can you beat that? The library also has free Internet access….

I will miss the clean, smooth roads and pavements (er, footpaths) of the city, with plenty of trees being planted (not being cut down), sidewalks which are sunken at the corners so that baby strollers and wheelchairs can easily cross the road….orderly pedestrian crossings where the pedestrians ALWAYS have the right of way….

I had, insensibly, come to think of St.Louis as home, too; I liked to read the local paper and find out what was happening in the city, a sure sign of putting down roots! I’ll miss finding out all the interesting stuff that was happening and going to participate if I could….that was the way I went for the ALS walk,and Autism walk, went to the Zoo several times, to a glass-blowing demo, watched so many Broadway musicals, attended the Symphony Orchestra performance….went to do what bird-watching I could, when I could… visited Yosemeite and Lake Tahoe and Philadelphia…I am amazed that I seem to have found time for all this along with full-time care of GD! I think DnA co-operated a lot to let me do so much.

I’ll miss the weather too…it was cooling down exactly as I liked (it was 7 deg C the day I left, and the previous day, with the same temperature, I was out walking from about 7am to about 11am!)…

But I’ve determined not to think of place B when I am in place A, and vice versa. (Vice versa= pornographic poetry?) Here, I’m going to enjoy being with friends, going out to eat inexpensive, simple, nutritious food that’s not filled with cheese and calories….I’m going to enjoy every sight and sound that is dear to me here…

…or at least, that’s what I am determined to do, but the mind is a monkey….I miss the feel of GD’s soft baby skin, and her toothless grin….every bit of caring for her and communicating with her…I miss making the morning chai for D….U miss the lack of dust, the wonderful organization of DnA’s home that made it a pleasure to live and cook in it…

OK, that’s enough….I must stop thinking of the “missing list”!

It’s tough to be torn between two continents, half the world apart from each other.

Somewhat scrambled and inarticulate post…but I’ll let it stand, as I am tooooo jet-lagged and tired to rewrite it properly.

Most things (except for N’s health) are going fine, and I shouldn’t be feeling so mixed-up and torn, I suppose; I should actuallly feel fortunate in being able to be a happy part of two worlds.