The Gypsy in Me

I am finally coming to terms with the gypsy in me.  It started to sink in when my best friend texted me, "I need your new address, my gypsy friend," so I could get her Christmas card.  I am her gypsy friend; I love to move.  In the last three years I've lived in the MILA (mother in law apartment), the Flat (a lovely historic condo circa late 1800s), the House in Hyde Park, the Faux-dobe House (what looked like a transplant from Santa Fe), and now the one I sit in today which I should nick-name before we move out.  

There is something fresh and freeing about changing spaces.  I feel cleansed and new every time.  These last three years are not at all unusual for me, and are not even the most impressive years as far as moving is concerned.  I grew up moving frequently.  To this day, I am not sure why my Mom moved around so much.  

My first house was the White House where kittens were born overnight in the garden shed.  I picked up my first kitten only a day old and myself only two or three.  The kitten was so squirmy, and I could feel its ribs beneath my fingers.  I was so surprised by this discovery of bone where I am sure I expected fluff, that I dropped the poor little thing out of fright!  I remember just knowing I could fly down the White House's stairs, but luckily never jumped to find out for sure.  We moved out of the White House and in the years to follow, my childhood was lived out in at least six other houses.

Not to be outdone by my own childhood, I have done three times that amount of moving during my own children's childhood.  But most daringly, I moved us all to South Africa.
Kalk Bay

Living in Cape Town was very different.  On arrival we couldn't even pronounce the little suburb we moved to called "Bothesig," with a very obnoxious "g" sound at the end.  Driving on the other side of the road was interesting.  Actually, everything felt exactly backwards from what I was accustomed to.  There was never any reason to hurry, the people were all smiles.  It really did feel like I was all the way around the world.  I must have felt upside down too because I broke more dishes during my stay in South Africa than I had my whole life, they just fell out of my hands.  But, in Bothesig, I had a view of Table Mountain from the backyard to share with an evening Braii.  The second place we lived in South Africa was Muizenberg, even more southern and coastal.  Here I stayed at the Beach House where whales visit in August.  I loved walking on Sunrise Beach next to that brilliant crystal sea water.

But before the whole South Africa adventure, there was Seattle. Here I was a bit less gypsy-ish and lived consistently on the first floor of a big old house across from the Fremont Bridge. This went on for almost two years.  I think I must have been recovering from earlier gypsy moments as I hadn't sat that still for years.  

Before Seattle, I lived in the Shanty (a house so so too small for me at barely 600 sq. ft.), the House Of Cards (located above a quaint corner store but very run down), The House House (this one was quite homey and could have been a forever house if I weren't so full of gypsy tendencies), the Loft, and the Yellow House (the house I wish I never owned), and this is nowhere near a complete list.

I admit to my indecisive roots.  I cannot commit to any permanent sense of settlement.  In fact, I am embarking on another big move in three weeks to not one, but two states, in three months.  If there is one thing I have realized in all of this inconsistency of place, it is that consistency and stability isn't found in place.  It is found in the people you love.  

My kids love to move.  Their faces light up and they count down the days.  They know that wherever I am, they are home.  And I know that wherever they are, I am home.
Me & Dog, Abiquiu, New Mexico

3 thoughts:

Maundering mutterer said...

Your positive attitude to moving is good. I've always moved yet wished to settle, and when I did it was a NIGHTMARE!

Loved your stories about Cape Town, almost forgot you'd lived in SA before.

Would you mind if I plugged your blog on mine? You really deserve more of a readership since you write so well and do such interesting art and have done such cool stuff and have such a fearless outlook and... lotsa things!

Ajax said...

MM~ Yes, I think some of us are just happiest when things are stirred up. Thank you for your encouragement! Every time I wonder why in the world I am blogging, there you are.

Plug away. :)

jenn said...

Love your writing.

I fully attribute my own adaptability to our many moves. And adaptability is a trait I value highly.

Roots and Wings. Roots and Wings. Roots and Wings. Lather, Rinse, Repeat. Right?

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