Saturday, April 11, 2015

Homeward bound, but first away

'In the quiet, misty morning,
When the moon has going to bed,
When the sparrow stop their singing,...
I'll be homeward bound again.'

This is one of my favourite songs that I used to sing many, many, years ago when I was in the Oxford Youth Choir. Andrew and his siblings also sang it (in the Kitchener Youth Phil, I believe). Occasionally, when we're all at my in-laws house, and my brother-in-law is at the piano, we'll all join for a little sing-a-long (insert comment about Von Trapp family here). It's a good time.

Sometimes I'll break into it on my own, usually while walking some place semi-remote, and I can imagine I'm a better singer than I am.

Reminiscences isn't actually the point of this blog post. The point is actually to look forward.

We're moving home, to Ontario.

Andrew and I moved away from Kitchener-Waterloo nearly 10 years ago. It was, in fact, very early in the morning on probably the 1st or 2nd of September 2005. I have no recollection of why we took such an early flight since we were only flying to Edmonton (2 hours behind Ontario), possibly price--we were poor students at the time. When we arrived we rented a mini-van and drove to Ikea (on the way into Edmonton, anyway) and bought ourselves a table and chair set, a futon, and probably a few other bits and pieces.

We were going for a Master's degree (Andrew's), a couple of years at most. Then it was a PhD (during which time I also did my Masters). Edmonton, and Alberta was good to us. We both got degrees, I had a good job, we took up aerials, we made friends.

Seven and a half years later we moved again, this time from Edmonton to Somerville, Massachusetts (or, the Boston area as I usually tell people--it's just easier explain). Somerville was to be one last adventure before settling down, how could a post-doctoral position at MIT hurt Andrew's chances (seriously, what engineering school would say, you spent time at MIT, what a waste)? We could have 2 years of living in a cool city, in a different country. We did more aerials, we made more friends. We (I) had a baby.

So, why did we move away in the first place? Well, as Andrew puts it, his elementary school, high school, and university were all a 30 minute bike ride away from each other--he needed to expand his radius. Being from a small town, I had to leave home to attend university, but I too felt I needed to get away, and experience a different part of the world. Grant you, it's not like we dropped everything to go work in a remote village in Africa, we moved to Edmonton, but we did step outside the comfort zone of friends, family, and familiarity.

I can't say my perspective on life has changed drastically. I don't think I've had any epiphany moments, but I've had many wonderful moments. Recently, Andrew and I have found memories of Edmonton cropping up, friends, Firefly (the aerials studio), restaurants (Elm cafe, Blue Plate dinner, Dutchess bakery), etc, and I'm sure once we leave Somerville something similar will happen for here.

If I remember correctly, when we left Ontario I said something to the effect of: moving away for a little bit would only make the return sweeter, that it would make settling in KW more rewarding because we had lived elsewhere for a while first.

I still think that's a true statement, and I'll talk about some of our trepidations of moving home in my next blog post.



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