The Compass in Our Hearts

Villa by Leon Gao
Lesson - Where is home? It's a simple enough question, but you may not know the answer until you've left it... or until it's left you. We have a compass built into our heart. We all do. It doesn't point North and it won't help us find buried treasure. It points home. Most people call this sensation "homesickness", and it will always tell you where your home is.

A home doesn't need to a be a roof or a building. When I began hitchhiking in the summer of 2000, I didn't feel homesick. At the time, I'd never before felt the sensation. The first time I felt it was in 2004, and it was for a person who took her own life. Even in death, she will always be home.

A home can be a place, or an event, as the next time I felt homesickness was when leaving Burning Man in 2005. This magic city that appears in the desert for only a week out of every year is "home" to so many amazing individuals... and it isn't just tradition that causes people to rush into each other's arms when they get back every year, yelling: "Welcome home!"

Home can be a state-of-being. I landlocked myself at the end of 2007, making a few promises to myself to "get stuff done". After just months of living under a roof, that sense of homesickness came back for "traveling". It may be crazy to think of living under a roof as being homeless, but that's how it feels... and I'll be homeless under a roof for another year. The feeling of homesickness for horizons hasn't gone away and it hasn't died down... at all. The road is my home. You can add holding a woman, or being held by a woman, to that same home-as-state-of-being list.

Home can be breathed in, or touched, using the senses. On one crisp, cold winter's morning, Faerie and I were taking a shortcut thru a neighborhood. She stopped all of a sudden, smelling the air and drawing me into the moment. I could smell the burning wood from a fireplace in a nearby house. Looking at me, she said: "That's 'home'. That's the smell of home." She's right. Home is in the scent of cinder... in the warmth of a fire.

You know where home is. Your heart will tell you.

Song of the Day: [Free from Shem on Mediafire]
Helios - In Heaven (Shem Remix)
"In Heaven (Shem Remix)" by Helios
Note: I originally had two articles that I wanted to link to for this post. I'm ashamed to say that I lost the links for them. If you've written about "home", please, please, please leave a link to it in the comments or send me a tweet. I'll gladly add anything here that isn't spam.