S/SW blog philosophy -

I credit favorite writers and public opinion makers.

A lifelong Democrat, my comments on Congress, the judiciary and the presidency are regular features.

My observations and commentary are on people and events in politics that affect the USA or the rest of the world, and stand for the interests of peace, security and justice.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Reflections of a homebody -

Feeling split
between my original "home" state and my current one has been my experience since I was 13 years old. It was that year that I began living in either Texas or Wyoming. Prior to coming of age, we lived in 9 different homes. At age 18 I moved to Texas and have lived there by choice ever since. But over all these years I have regularly returned to spend time with my family of origin, now all living in Wyoming.
What constituted "home" geographical limits in both states was always the county line. As an adult I have always lived in the "county seat," the town with the county court house. I am an urbanite, a city dude by preference. I moved to this city to go to college and have lived and worked in the same area all my adult life. Much of my identity is centered here. I was never ashamed to call myself a "homemaker," though I never stated I was "just a homemaker." And all our children and grandchildren live within an easy drive of our house. We are a lucky and unusual family in that aspect of location.
Mostly at home in the country as a child, that small county-seat town in Wyoming was always my favorite, though I never lived there. It was my favorite town because the Saturday afternoon movie matinee was there, and it was where our paternal grandparents lived. It was - and is - a beautiful small town, nestled at the foot of the Rockies. People there keep lovely yards featuring weeping birch and blue spruce trees, and magnificent large lilac bushes are the talk of each spring. A clear cold creek meanders from the southwest to the eastern town borders.
Homebodies do not have "itchy feet," I am told. My mother characterizes her father as "having itchy feet," always moving further west. Thus moving to us almost always feels a bit traumatic. We prefer to live wherever we are currently living. As did my father before him, my roommate loves to move, however. We have lived in 13 different homes since getting married. With each move the wisdom and inevitability of the translocation became obvious, so I packed and moved. But none of these moves was as easy for me as for my roommate.

Stay-at-homes prefer our own houses.
We are more likely to have mortgages than rent receipts. We like to know where all our "stuff" is stored. And many of us keep far too much stuff. We like to be able to find our way around in the dark. Our homes often make statements about who we are. We like to do our own decorating and some of us like to rearrange the furniture when we get bored.
Feeling at home is a high compliment that I can pay to any of my hosts or hostesses. Because we prefer to be at home rather than away from home, it is not always easy for us to be that comfortable as visitors or guests. People who visit us tend to feel at home, I believe. And our kids and grandkids always seem to feel at home here, at least I hope they do.
Some of us homebodies tend to be rather "territorial." After becoming a clinical social worker I was "at home" in the same organization until I retired. And changing offices was neither comfortable nor exciting to me, there, as well. I was protective of my clients and my managerial "turf." I sometimes resented intrusions by my superiors, even though their actions were perfectly justified.
South by Southwest is my home blog. It is where I virtually hang out every day. Readers come by here to "visit" me. While I was travelling I had to visit my own blog from whatever local library was nearby. I was not comfortable with that arrangement. And as you might infer, I am really glad to be back home to the regular familiar confines of my study, my own DSL, my screensavers, my C-SPAN on my own television - and my homebody internet turf.
Other bloggers who travel have sometimes shared similar thoughts and experiences. Among them are Steve Clemons (world traveler) of The Washington Note, Grant McCracken of This Blog Sits at the Intersection of Anthropology and Economics (currently in Europe), Dr. Lorianne DiSabato of Hoarded Ordinaries (an inveterate traveller), and "Margaret" (born in Lebanon and who recently travelled there) of Margaret's Wanderings. And (a strictly internet traveler), "betmo," titles her blog life's journey.
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