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Home, I take a piece of it everywhere I go

February 24, 2013

Everytime I go home, I always need time to adjust, and it’s longer than the time I spend here. Let me tell you what it feels like.

Clean, maticulate house. The house is dusted and mopped everyday. I like to walk barefooted around the house, and I can hear the skid that sounds like wet sneakers on ceramic tiles.
Ordered, organized stuffs. Well, not everything is inside labeled containers, luckily, otherwise this house will feel like a warehouse or a pharmacy store. But books are lined up, dishes are all in the shelves, and random bits are kept in boxes.

My grandparents' house, where we gather each year for new year

My grandparents’ house, where we gather each year for new year

Now you get the idea why I’m both so clean and organized, but also find it hard to think outside the box. I’m used to follow rules and patterns. This goes here, that goes there, do this today, do that tomorrow. Schedules and rules are in place, all the time.

There is a feel of a museum in the house. There are clothes, pictures, books, .. stuffs as old as 20-40 years old. As typical traditional Chinese people do, my parents treasure everything from generation to generation. These days, this would be called hoarding. They obtain goods with long-term use in mind. Our sofas are now more than 12 years old. Our dining table, as old as me. The work/study desks in my parents’ room and my sister’s, as old as 40 years old. These desks were made from real durable wood. Nowadays, furnitures are mostly made from small pieces of so-so quality wood, easier to be eaten by bugs. My room smells old. The wallpaper is new from the last renovation, but the furnitures and items in them are 新三年久三年. I have a few clothes from elementary school. Some are from my grandma and aunts! I don’t wear them (anymore), but there is no throwing out unworn clothes in my family. At least they become a story subject. The computer and printer in my room was since I was in high school. Nowadays, people claim they deserve a phone upgrade after 1-2 years. Yeah.

Leftover prayer sticks, left on the wall of the old house

Leftover prayer sticks, left on the wall of the old house

Some things I do love it here. Plenty of green. My mom planted some fruit trees on our garden. One of my aunts plants in small pots.My bed, is so good! It’s more than 10 years, but feels just as strong as its early years. My body feels good sleeping on it. In India and China, I had a combination of back, shoulder, and neck discomfort. I don’t whine, but I do like comfy bed and pillow.

Some things, I do not prefer here. It’s actually hard to describe this feeling. It’s a combination of: the house is so big I don’t know what to do if something goes wrong, I feel quite lonely in this big house, it’s not convenient to go anywhere without a car, and my life is too protected to the point of me feeling trapped here. I really don’t know anything about life beyond what I was exposed to, which was not much, really. Growing up to be an adult pretty much happened outside this city and country, and I come back feeling like a stranger. Very sad. I suppose I will need to get adjusted from the culture shock, if I ever go home for good.

Door to my parents' old office

Door to my parents’ old office. Nowadays, my aunt’s mom keeps some orchids in the pot by the door.

Contrary to what my parents and other people may think, many things can call me back home. I have so much concern about my family and a number of my relatives. Those who have entrusted their lives to Jesus, they I don’t worry; they already have everything. But the rest, they are fighting this life, fighting to gain things the world require out of them. This kind of fight, whether successful or failed, is very lonely. Though I do think and pray for them when I am away, I am never sure whether I am better doing it from home. Then, I still have to go a thousand miles to overcome some issues from my past.

Home is still home, now or in the future. And I’m thankful for the big family I have. I trust God to use this burden I bear to direct my way.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Pankhuri permalink
    February 24, 2013 10:27 pm

    Wow! I say that all the time.. that I carry my home with me… Although, I left my house long time back and then my family also moved out.. but that house was more or less what you’ve described your house to be.. Whichever place I’ve called home after that, mainly because my family lives there, it is always with me in the so called outside world. It gives a feeling of support and comfort.. And an assurance that I would always be able to go back to my home, my base.

    I am really liking your blog. Please do keep writing..

    Good luck and take care,

    – Pankhuri

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