During this year we've been following the blogs of other families that were traveling, like we were. A handful of our favorites ended their travels, and headed home during the year. Before we left Cusco, as the days counted down, we went back and re-read those blogs on 're-entry'. Every family was different, and also had a lot in common, and the stories of coming home and re-adjusting pulled at us. They talked about pulling back into the driveway, and walking into the living room, with everything the same as the day they left. About the symmetry of leaving in the early morning darkness, and a year later coming home to the late night darkness.
Our homecoming has been very different. We sold nearly everything we owned before we left. We've got to come back, and re-create our lives, piece by piece. Our symmetry is leaving one house in Pasadena, loaned by friends who were out of town, and coming back to another house in Pasadena, loaned by friends (friends we've never met) who are out of town.
We've been running since we landed. In a little over a week we've: rented a house, bought a car, scoured a dozen charity shops for tables and dressers, beds and lamps. We've visited the domestic alphabet: GWP, DMV, USPS, and the Gas Company (they really need to get in on the alphabet action). We've had a lot of 'first time back' moments: first day back at church, first Warner Bros work meeting, first Monday Potluck in the Park, first Trader Joes shopping...
On Monday our storage pod will be delivered, and we'll start to unload. Our whole family keeps saying the same thing, "It's going to be like Christmas!" Re-discovering our possessions should be a lot of fun. And in this way - I have to say - I'm really happy that we are coming back to a fresh start, instead of pulling into the driveway of a house we left a year ago, with everything the same. My outlook on 'possessions' has changed. I want to own less. I want to live smaller. After having everything we own packed into a few suitcases for the last year, even one storage pod seems a bit much to me, truthfully.
We'll see how long it lasts. The All-American pull to live 'big' is everywhere. And it's so very seductive.