I like gravy on my chips. I don’t wear a coat on nights out, regardless of how cold it is outside. And you’d better believe I have a bottle of Henderson’s Relish in the cupboard AT ALL TIMES.
The secret’s out. I’m a Northerner. But in the next few months I’ll be swapping God’s Own Country for Somerset.
The best part of all of this is that I’ve never set foot even close to Somerset. The furthest south of England I’ve been is London, I literally have no clue what the West of the country is like. So you might wonder why exactly I’m moving to a random place in the country (notably famous for cider which gives me a headache) with no experience of it.
Let me answer that with the truth. I don’t really know either. I admit, it sounds a little like I’m under some witness protection programme or I’m running away from a crazy situation but honestly I just want a fresh start. And my craving for pastures new is nothing unusual for me.
I’ve never been the kind of person who feels at ‘home’ in one particular place. My wanderlust far exceeds any longing to be in one place for a period of time. If I wasn’t so partial to baths and bookcases, I’d quite happily live out of a caravan for the rest of my life, never staying in one place for too long.
I’ve lived in 10 different houses in 5 different towns across 3 countries.
There was my childhood home, a place that almost feels like another life. Leaving old homes feels a bit like grief. I don’t remember what the doors sounded like when they shut or how the floorboards creaked. But when I conjure the image up in my head I feel warmth.
Then there’s the ‘new house.’ A place my parents don’t even live anymore but will always feel ‘new’ because it was never really home for me. At the same time, I was living in the squalor of student houses. 7 years, 6 awful, damp, unwashed plate filled, sticky tabled houses in England, Germany and the Netherlands and finally a nice flat.
Which brings me to now. In four months I’ll be living somewhere that I don’t even know exists yet, starting a new life, a fresh start, a whole new chapter. It’s exciting and scary and I’m ready for a lifetime of new ‘homes’ wherever they may be.
What does home mean to you? Let me know in the comments.