Monday, November 30, 2009

Is home where the ♥ is?

{image from Stock Xchng}

So the silly season in Dar is quite a different experience. Seeing that Tanzania is roughly divided 50/50 between Christians and Muslim obviously Christmas has as much significance as Eid. This means that the feeling of Christmas gets a little diluted. The big grocery stores (there are only about 5) have tried with garishly kitch Christmas decorations and of course the usual Christmas Carols, but thats about it.

Another phenomenon in this time is that every single person you run into asks the same question; "When are you going home?" this is usually followed with an sigh of joy (or relief) and a long winded explanation of when, where, for how long and usually ends with something along the lines of  "I have to get out, this place gets too much!"

So people decide on the expat life (especially in Dar) for different reasons;
1. Money
2. Career Opportunities 
3. Running away from something(?)
4. Different lifestyle

But still, without fail, come this time of year there is a massive exodus of expats returning joyously to their 'homes' where they will relate tales of struggles in Dar. This brings me to the point of this post. Where is 'home'?

Using trusty google I came across these two explanations of the well known proverb 'Home is where the heart is'.

Home is where the heart is.
1. Prov. People long to be at home.; Your home is whatever place you long to be.

I don't disagree with this one. "Home" is definitely the place you long to be. But if you are an expat does that mean you always long to be somewhere else? Why can you not long to be in Dar and why do you then choose this life?

2. Prov. Something that you say which means that your true home is with the person or in the place that you love most.

I don't completely agree with this one. Especially with the first part about the person. I know of couples in Dar, with children who have stayed here for 10 years who still go "home" every december? I mean when does Dar then become "home"? They have 'the person they love the most' with them? 

After having thought about this a lot I think "home" is where you have made the most memories, where you have the deepest roots. The Photographer had a good comment, he said that if you plant a seed it takes time to grow deep, strong roots. 

So my conclusion to this interesting question is that your "home" will always be the place where you have the deepest roots, although you might wish to plant seeds in other places. Maybe when you have been there longer than anywhere else that will become your "home". And the beautiful thing of this is that even though "home" might have a complex set of issues you will still love it unconditionally almost like a parent loves a problem child. 

I am also one of those people, constantly comparing "home" and dar, I have to remind myself of the good reasons to enjoy life here but am still idolizing life "at home". It is a complicated situation seeing that every time I go "home" there are things that drive me up the wall. But I am counting the days until I go "home"(12!)

So after much deliberation I am changing the proverb to say;

Home is where your history is

Anybody have anything to add?


No comments:

Post a Comment