They say it's just like riding a bike.
I've been off for a couple of weeks now, haven't written a word, spent my Christmas in New Hampshire with my in-laws. I've eaten a lot of finger foods, probably too many (especially my mother-in-law's Lebanese pastry, kaak - toasted just a little, they're delicious); I've had even more glasses of red wine. I've contracted and treated strep throat, the "Christmas strep," as has the rest of the family. I have joked about requesting the gallon-jug of amoxicillin at the pharmacy. I have spent many evenings playing Sorry, TriOminos, and chess with my sons and husband.
But now, I'm rested and healthy and ready to get back to the work at hand: trying to live two places at once - Brooklyn and Dallas, and be two people at once - Dallasinian and Brooklynite. And to explain to you what it's like being these two people.
It's very difficult to do.
When we were flying back to Dallas from Boston last week, on our downward descent into Dallas/Fort Worth, I looked out the window at the miles and miles of flat brown fields, a lake or creek tossed here or there, gobs of sunshine poured on top, and when we made a wide turn in our jet, and I got a glimpse of the city - a few tall, glassy, steely buildings that appear to be rising up straight out of a dirt field - it just didn't feel like home. It felt like camp. Camp is a place you go on vacation, a place you go to relax, and maybe that's just Dallas' vibe - it feels too relaxed to be my home. Or maybe I just haven't taken the time to make it my home. I don't know the psychological reasons for it, but for one reason or another, Holly is still "just visiting", thanks.
Dallas feels temporary still. I wonder every day if we'll be here long - at this point, I can't really tell. I have certainly let go of any of my preconceived notions of location becoming my identity. Well. That sounds amazingly spiritually sound, doesn't it? I got it from a book. I say certainly, but I still think of myself as a New Yorker. I still actually call myself a New Yorker. I got caught at the park just the other day lying to myself (and an unsuspecting mom):
A mom said, is this weather cold enough for you? I think it was around 60 degrees at the time. In January!
I said, oh, jeez, no way, I'm a New Yorker. This is springtime for us. A New Yorker? Oh, do you live in New York? Um. No. Did you move from New York? Yes! Oh, very recently then? Well, it's been over a year and a half.