Tuesday, February 7, 2012

I get the feeling that most people head home from vacation with a sense of relief. After a road trip, it's probably nice to drive up to the house and know that parking is free. The food in the pantry is paid for, and it probably cost less than a meal out in whatever destination. Closets and drawers mean more outfits than one can tote along in a duffel bag, and easy access to a washing machine renders the mistake of fishing a dirty pair of underwear (in search of a fresh set of skivvies) from the bottom of a valise Highly Unlikely. Most people seem to relish even that first load of laundry, the dull buzz of the dryer the only sound accompanying sighs upon entering a peaceful house after a holiday.

Unless you're me.

I don't mind living out of a suitcase, although I certainly do enjoy having a home base in which to dump my crap. I just shove my day-old t-shirts to the side and put on the same old sweater, and I visit a laundromat or ask my host to use her washer if I need to get the scent of travel out of my jeans. I never vacation at resorts, so my housing costs aren't obscene, and I'm a monstrously picky eater, so I tend to buy my own groceries and live on sprouts and peanut butter when I'm away, thus eliminating breathtaking dinner bills while city-hopping. I don't rent cars when out of town, although I might rent a bike- and while I miss my own two wheels when I'm not home, I like pedaling pricey machines that I might otherwise never ride. And- my return is never ushered in with a sigh of relief at the turn of the lock. My home offers no such quiet haven. I step out of the noisy current of travel: jet engines, nervous passengers, truck horns, suitcase zippers- and into a house full of chirpy greetings from my well-meaning but somewhat over-enthusiastic roommates.

Some people anticipate that first morning back, waking up in their own bed to quiet. I wake up to the sound of circular saws in the back stairwell (the entrance to which abuts my room), the scent of sawdust pushing the last hint of seaside from my nose as I remember that I'm not in Maine anymore.

I have no plans, and I have no money, but I have an idea that being a vagrant doesn't require either. I just need to hold on until May, and then I can go.

1 comment:

artsyasian said...

frances...i'm sure circular saws don't wake you up, as you're always up before anyone else even gets started. and a friendly welcome when you walk through the door is hardly a sin. please cut us some slack. we are not such horrible roommates....