Of Oz and Elsewhere

I always felt sorry for Dorothy at the end.

She finally finds a way to go home – to the place where she is loved – but in doing so she leaves a place of vibrant color and music, and a place where she was loved and was also able to love.

I know I’m not getting the point here – but there’s always been a part of me that wonders if it is possible to find home in various places.  Kansas and Oz.  NJ and Buffalo.  With my folks and with my spouse.  Had I put on those shoes and whispered “There’s no place like home”, I fear my heart would land in one place and my stomach another.

We’re on vacation from vacation, and have traveled from Camden, NY (where we will eventually retire) and Buffalo, NY.  Bill and I stopped off en route to our hotel to do several things.  First, we ate at Ted’s (anyone who calls Buffalo home knows that Ted’s is like oil for a tin man; then a drive-by the old family house and then we went to the Albright-Knox.  Bill did his field-ed placement there, and I had spent countless hours there while taking graphic arts courses at Buff State (not to mention field trips as a kid!).  Today we’ll lunch at Mighty Taco, with an Anderson’s custard chaser.

Buffalo is a town where a visit is a chance to eat all those things you crave when you’re not at home there – unfortunately, our 24 hours will not allow us to eat at all the places we’d like.

The nostalgia of this trip is wrapped up tightly in the fact that this is my first trip to Buffalo without my parents here.  Indeed, the reason we ended up here was due to mourning the fact that we no longer had an excuse to eat at Ted’s since they had moved to Rochester.  And although my family is no longer here in the Buffalo region, there’s a part of me (my digestive tract apparently!) that will always call this area home.

We leave in a few hours for Camden, NY (via Attica, NY… another place we’ve called home!).  Camden may not have great food – but it does hold our future together.  It has marshmallows and stars and coyotes and owls.  It has a meadow surrounded by trees and a thick dew in the morning.  On Sunday we’ll leave our present and future home for Roselle, NJ – our current home.  All these places hold things and people that I love – and all of them are cast in brilliant color and filled with music and memory.

There’s no place like home(s).

One Comment

Oh my friend you put it so very well. FL and NJ are both my homes and the people in both make it that way (food too). Thank you for sharing and here is to finding that place and time over the rainbow when it all comes together.

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