“The ache for home lives in all of us. The safe place where we can go as we are and not be questioned.”

Last night was chilly, close the window chilly. It will be the same tonight then tomorrow through Sunday will get warmer each day. I don’t why summer expects all these return engagements. I’m already geared up for fall, and Labor Day, the unofficial end of summer, is close. It is as early as it can be.

I thought I had an empty dance card tomorrow, but I don’t. That means I have had something to do every day this week. My car is racking up the miles. I have already ridden over 70 miles through today. To me that’s a cross-country trip and tomorrow they’ll be more to come as I have to go to Hyannis. Yup, all the way to Hyannis, the big city in these parts.

I haven’t heard from Grace so I don’t know the progress of her quest to get a visa. She has all the papers she needs to prove her roots are in Ghana. She just has to present them. Grace had them the last time but was so overwhelmed by the quick 10 minute interview she didn’t think to use them. This time she swears she’ll be more assertive. I did call her last week, but she was in the Bolga market with Rose Atiah, another student of mine. In the background I could hear all the voices and the bustle of market day, and it was so loud the conversation was difficult. I said hello to Rose and she asked if I were well. Madam is what Rose still calls me. That’s what all the students called me. Rose is a grandmother; Grace is 61, but I will always be madam.

When I was in high school and forced to move to the cape, I was devastated. I had lived almost my whole life in one town, had the same friends forever and was involved in all sorts of activities. I hated the cape and came home from school every day, threw my books on the bed in my room and stayed there. I remember that first day of school when I stood outside alone by the side door while everyone chatted and talked about the summer. I wore new school clothes, not a uniform for the first time. My homeroom and my classes were easy to find but no one talked to me. I ate alone in the cafeteria. Every weekend I took the bus back to my home, my old town, and stayed with friends. My life had ended, or at least that’s what I thought. It took time, but I found a way to get involved. I joined after school groups. My favorite was the Latin Club but I have no memories of what we did. I was taking Latin IV so the club seemed to fit. Every time I see the yearbook picture of that club, I laugh. We looked like geeks. Giving the drama of my life at the time, I joined the drama club. I made friends, and found a place to sit in the cafeteria with my new friends.

While I was in Ghana and my brother was in the army, my father was transferred back to Boston. My parents bought a house in my old town, but it was never my home. When my brother and I came back to the United States, we both went home to Cape Cod. My mother said she wouldn’t take it personally that no matter where she lived, we wanted to live somewhere else, but our choice had nothing to do with her or the rest of my family. It had to do with our need for the comfort of familiar places and people as that’s what the Cape was for us, a refuge and our home.

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12 Comments on ““The ache for home lives in all of us. The safe place where we can go as we are and not be questioned.””

  1. Juan Woo Noz Says:

    Juan is still thinking about BIRTHDAYS. In the Woo Noz family, BIRTHDAYS are a very big deal. An exchange of gifts, a flurry of BIRTHDAY CARDS, the circulation of BIRTHDAY LISTS, detailing the perfect gift that would make the day even more special,

    One member of the Woo Noz family is clambering towards a BIRTHDAY ending in a zero, and the month long celebration will begin near September when all the Woo Nozs take a 5 day break in Jamaica. Then planning kicks in to high gear and 30 days later 25 family members fly in for a weekend celebration.

    Juan likes BIRTHDAYS, CAKE, CARDS, FAMILY, FRIENDS. It is a celebration, a time to look back and a time to wish MANY HAPPY RETURNS OF THE DAY

    There are important BIRTHDAYS on the immediate horizon.

    • katry Says:

      Juan,
      The Woo Noz family celebrates exactly as I would wish my birthday to be celebrated.

      Those birthdays ending in zero are cause for massive celebrations, being major milestones. A trip to Jamaica sounds like a wonderful way to celebrate a zero birthday! If my birthday happens to fall on a weekend, I think celebrating for the whole weekend is necessary to fit in all the festivities.

      Juan is a man of discerning tastes when it comes to BIRTHDAYS!!!

      Wow, an important BIRTHDAY is looming you say!!

  2. olof1 Says:

    The first time I moved I only mowed around 100 yards from where I lived 🙂 Next time I moved to the borders of the town close to the ocean and I loved it. I was going in highschool by then so I never had to move to another school, I just took the treetcar that stopped close to the school.

    Back in my days we had nothing like Your after school groups, I think they have now days though, especially those that studies drama, art and media. Actually, I think I might be lying, something back in my head says I had a friend that belonged to a school photography group that met after school but I’m not sure about after school 🙂

    I’ve never longed back to the big city even if I miss the ocean so much. Strange really since I still have lots of friends down there.

    Have a great day!
    Christer.

    • katry Says:

      Christer,
      I first moved further down the street to a bigger house then years later was the move to the cape and that’s where I’ve stayed except for Ghana.

      Lots of after-school groups are now in all the high schools. The idea is that kids become more invested in school the more involved they are.

      I could never live in a city though I love some cities, especially Boston.

  3. Hedley Says:

    Hey Kat,
    Just checking in from a beautiful Michigan, cool air, little fluffy clouds and the arrival of the Kansas City Royals.

    Excuse me for asking but isn’t your Birthday this week ?

  4. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    I’ve always lived where I live now. There were varying chunks of time when I lived in other places but they were not permanent. While I may have lived in some of them for a long time I never moved furniture to them. Just myself and my personal effects.

    So for tomorrow’s breakfast will there be BIRTHDAY CAKE?

    Enjoy!

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      I lived in Stoneham for the longest time then we moved here to the cape where I have lived for fifty years. Ghana was only 27 months, but I would have a house there to return to periodically if I were rich.

      I think BIRTHDAY CAKE is perfect for tomorrow!!

      • Hedley Says:

        And GIFTS and CARDS and good wishes from the KTCC family and a few Judy Collins tunes and a run to the dump with GRACIE

      • katry Says:

        My Dear Hedley,
        Yup, all my favorite tunes, repeats or not, GIFTS and CARDS and CAKE!!!

        Sadly no dump run with GRACIE as my trash was taken yesterday by Skip, my factotum.


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