Monday, July 31, 2006Passerby
I spent the weekend involved in some family-reunion-related programs activities: grandparents, aunts and uncles, an a few of the cousins were there, people I don't get to see very often. I grew up mostly around my father's relatives until I was a teenager, when that side of the family began to implode. Since then, those relationships have all but collapsed under the weight of accumulated dysfunction. I didn't get to see as much of my mother's family until I was a teenager, when they often took on the role of our support system (though my rootlessness has meant that now I don't see them as often as I might.) In the end, I'd just as soon dissolve my ties to my dad's side, and I've come to identify more closely with my mom's side. We're not all the same, but there's more room, it seems, to be who you are. I can be inclined towards feelings of oddness that leave me feeling remote from people, but on my mother's side of the family strange choices and some nascent eccentricity are part of your birthright. I'm not a black sheep, I'm part of a long-standing family tradition. That's pretty cool.
I came home to pictures and postcards from a couple of friends'international jaunts to Japan and China; another friend from Memphis who has since moved to the upper-left corner of the country is also passing through town this week. Talk of other people's travels always makes me feel wistful -- I have to wonder why I'm putting so much energy into staying in Memphis when the only thing I've ever really wanted is to go other places. My immediate plans aren't about to change -- I've committed to certain projects that will keep me local for at least the next year -- but the inhospitable economy of this city combined with my own nagging wanderlust are leading my thoughts regarding "what's next" to wander in some radical directions. Whatever happens, the life I want to live needs more space than Memphis can provide.
But where should I go? And how the fuck am I going to get there? |