Monday, August 21, 2006

why i still live in this one horse town.

A few days ago, while at a restaurant with my mom and Claire, I ran into a girl from high school. We chatted for a few minutes before she asked me where I was living. She was sure that I had moved out of state. I've been back in this town for five years and I sometimes wonder what I'm doing here. I spent my first year after high school in Hawaii and after that I traveled. A lot. During college, I spent school breaks visiting places that sometimes required the use of a passport stamped with my former last name and former hairstyle. It's not that I no longer enjoy visiting interesting places- I do. But lately spice shopping is a big thrill. The thing is, I know it's not cool, but I like living in my hometown. I like that Claire's first ride on swings was in in the same park that I once played in as a child. I like that we shop in the same mall where my high school best friend and I choked on clove cigarettes for the first time. I like knowing the best places to get a cup of coffee, a haircut or breakfast. This place holds my memories: miles walked with Nate as friends that first summer, biking on our beach cruisers on Saturdays our first married summer, navigating Claire's gear and Monkey on walks this summer. I never thought I'd love being a wife and a mother so much. For me, the biggest adventures haven't required a passport. Living in China was easy compared to being a full-time mom. But, there is a wonderful contentment that makes even living in your hometown feel good. I never thought I'd say that.