Wednesday, 7 July 2010
A Ramblin' Woman
When I was young I wanted to see the world. Though I loved them, I ached to get away from Canada's forests and lakes, and I feared I never would. I was not from a family that went off on foreign holidays in summer, not even to visit family in other countries -- they came to us.
I swam all day, sat around bonfires nights, and it was wonderful, too, of course. But I had letters and postcards from Poland, that made me think it was the land of my dreams. I had tiny, souvenir sacks of lavender from Italy, stories from everyplace, and a mysterious silence from all the girls I knew who went to see their families in China, who said only that it was polluted and people called them fat, though they were thin as could be. I passed a summer where I worked all day next to a Romanian woman in a factory, who told me it was the best place on earth and made me promise to go there one day. And I wanted nothing more.
The day I married was one month after graduating university and exactly one week before my husband started a job in Japan, and I left to meet him there a month after that. Since then I've only been home on a few visits which, while longer than I expected at the time, were still only visits, with all of their foggy transience.
It seems as though everywhere I look the people I know are settling down, buying houses and cars, having babies. Though sometimes impermanence frustrates me: not having a home of my own, and at this moment not knowing where I will be in even two months' time, I am still itching for roads and seas, movement. There are weeks (like this one) when it seems to come up over and over again from every direction -- babies, more and more degrees, a proper career, brick and mortar, time is passing -- but even if it is uncertain, I want to wrap myself up in a life I choose. I do not want to regret.