Home is where the heart is. At least, that’s what people tell me. I would like to say I’ve had a home, a place to go back to, a place to call my own. But, I can’t, for the life of me, remember the last place I used to call home. I think it was that simple city up in Canada, but I had left that city in my efforts to leave the protective umbrella of my parents years ago. Sure I went to school in New York, but who can really call their schools home?
Do I have fond memories of the big city? Of course. But anyone can make nostalgic moments in retrospect. I stayed in Barcelona for but a week, and I have fond memories there as well. I remember being delightfully drunk after having a couple too many beers over a paltry Spanish brunch, and then taking to the streets in search of places to go, and faces to see. I also remember traversing the city all by myself, taking in the sights that my friends neglected, choosing instead to get plastered at the local establishments.
I also have fond memories of Los Angeles, despite never having actually lived there, and of Silicon Valley, a place that gave me more pain than pleasure. I also adore Korea, despite leaving while I was but an infant, and Manila, Kingston, even Florida hold special places in my heart. But none of those places can I call home.
So, where am I now? As of this writing, I am sitting in a Starbucks, just off exit number 9 at Seoul’s Gangnam Station. I’m back where I started. Back to the country of my birth. And yet, thanks to years of absence, I feel like an alien here — like I don’t belong. Like the first settlers in Roanoke, I feel lost. I feel as though I haven’t found my place yet, and that I must continue searching.
To be honest, the search is getting a tad bit desperate. I loathe the very thought of returning under my parent’s wings. The very notion makes me shiver. The idea that I can’t fend for myself is the cruelest of notions, and one that makes me toss and turn in my slumber. I think this is why I can’t call anywhere home. Because home, to me, has an inherently different definition than what others define it to be.
Home is, to me, a place that I can rightfully call my own. A place that is the culmination of what I have accomplished. A place that I come to after all I have done to rest until dawn strikes again. But, to this day, I have accomplished but paltry, if not nothing. I have taken the liberty of taking my life, and putting it to waste. Or, so that’s what I’ve been told. Perhaps, in the grand scheme of things, I was meant to be a nomad. Perhaps I was meant to see the world. Perhaps, this is my home. I’m right where I belong.