Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Reason # 2621 I live in Newfoundland


It is an extraordinary feeling, the sense that my whole life was just a holding pattern to prepare me to live here in Newfoundland. Getting ready, as it were.

Even in Ireland, surrounded by relatives, friends, acquaintances, I never felt that complete sense of belonging for my self alone, I was always someone's daughter or cousin or niece or grandchild. There was a sense of obligation both on my part and theirs.

But here it is just me, there is none of that baggage, none of the tribal or historical about it.

When I go berry picking here with friends, it feels like I've been doing this for ever. Blue sky above, with the matching ocean below, the hills a pulse of blueberries, the conversation monosyllabic for the most part as butterflies and bees dance among the bushes and I think: there is no finer thing than gathering winter food from the lavish abundance of the land.

My days lately are full of activities. Visiting and being visited is still very strong here, in the true Irish tradition. It is hard to work, the distractions are too attractive.

Today it was afternoon tea at a friend's. And there was all the time in the world to savour the slow talk, the village gossip, the condition of our planting, the work being done on my house, who dropped in to see me, who dropped in on them, our respective families.

Earlier in the afternoon, it was another friend bringing her visiting sister, while Gordon-The-Gift banged out a holy floor in my bedroom above us - the gorgeous narrow boards are from an old church and I, this godless woman, is getting an enormous charge out of that.

And I haven't even talked about the food thing yet.

22 comments:

  1. You do realise that you are blessed. Right? I envy you, in the best possible way.

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  2. Tessa:
    I believe there is a sense of 'home' in all of us. We are fortunate when we find it. For years I thought it in Ireland, I was totally shocked it was here in Canada on the edge of the Atlantic.
    I really had nothing to do with it. When I landed here I just knew it. Others, like me, have had the same thing happen.
    An 'oh there you are! Fancy that.'
    XO
    WWW

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  3. It's great that you feel such a sense of being 'home'. I don't think either England or Ireland is my true spiritual home, but where the real one might be, I haven't a clue.

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  4. WWW, I loved this post and your courage to find your home - all for yourself and not for what you might think you "owe" family or friends. I'm going to ponder this a while.

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  5. It sounds completely idyllic! I can just taste the pancakes to go with those blueberries :-D

    I know what you mean about that "there you are" feeling - I never felt settled in the UK, wherever we lived, yet within a few months of arriving in NZ, it feels like this square peg has finally found a square hole...

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  6. Nick:
    And I don't think there is anything such as seeking it either, it finds us, I really believe that.
    I think you've mentioned a connection you feel with Australia in the past?
    XO
    WWW

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  7. Marcia:
    I think most of us get caught up in our family of origin and think to find a 'home' there whether in reality or in that form of longing which never gets realized.
    I remember a song by Peter, Paul & Mary called "Home is Where the Heart is" which expressed the idea of home so beautifully.
    XO
    WWW

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  8. Jo:
    And as soon as you landed there you had all kinds of friends and a connection with the landscape. It is amazing how we are 'found' isn't it?
    I think very few of us do find that resonance in our lives we are so busy being where others want us to be or lost.
    XO
    WWW

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  9. Your theme song, these days, WWW ought to be that sung by.....can't recall who, but it goes "Lucky, lucky, lucky - I'm so lucky......."
    :-)

    Or another - one of my favourites:
    "Feels Like Home" by Randy Newman, sung, I think by Bonnie Raitt.

    To have found oneself exactly where one wants, and needs, to be is surely a blessing from Mother Nature.... and destiny.

    I don't feel especially at home in the place where I find myself now, but the person I'm with makes up for that. Taking the rough with smooth.....can't have it all.
    ;-)

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  10. My home is on Cape Cod in the 1950's and 60's.
    So it's kind of hard to go there! We are going there next week and will see friends and family. But there are too many people and cars and buildings there now, though I still adore my home town.

    But yanno, I also felt quite at home in Nova Scotia and Montreal.
    I've lived in the mountains for years but my natural spot is by the sea.
    Also loved Dublin in the 70's when it was poor and dirty. The best and worst year of my life in many ways.

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  11. It sounds like you have found your own "Shangri-La". Enjoy

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  12. Much of this feeling comes with age and the lack of vanity, not just physical vanity but the newly acquired indifference to being 'somebody', presenting a persona;

    I too find that being myself is enormously satisfying and that a life spent concentrating on the essentials, ie. friends, the comforts of home, nature, is so much more worthwhile than the old life used to be.

    PS: food is very important too.

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  13. Looking forward to joining you (speaking spiritually, of course) in just nine months.

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  14. I do feel a very strong connection with Oz. If I'd gone there when I was young, I think I might well have emigrated.

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  15. Wonderful post!

    I think finding the place and being found by it happens simultaneously for that Oh! There you are! feeling. I've had it mostly at the house where I grew up (that pull is still a pressing one) but have found, unexpectedly, a similar connection in parts of England, in Wales at the site of Tintern Abbey, on a hilltop in northern Vermont, and deep in the California redwood forest. Sometimes I envy people who feel at home anywhere. I seem to have roots that run deep and wide.

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  16. All being well I will be in Newfoundland for New Years :-) Can't wait!

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  17. All being well I will be in Newfoundland for New Years :-) Can't wait!

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  18. I love the place that I live in now, but I don't have that strong feeling of being connected to the place as home that I had in childhood. I was fully conscious of the "home" feeling about the fields and woods at a very young age in my aunt's house in New England.

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  19. Nick:
    yes, you have written of it with such admiration, I sensed that!
    XO
    WWW

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  20. Pauline:
    Yes another place I felt a strong connection with was The Burren in Co. Clare, Ireland.
    And I also admire people who feel at home anywhere in the world. Not me I'm afraid!
    XO
    WWW

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  21. Conor:
    I see you're so excited you sent it twice. Oh I do hope we have a meetup!
    XO
    WWW

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  22. 20CW:
    Yes those places of childhood, I used to have that in West Cork in Ireland but it was knocked out of me a few years back.
    XO
    WWW

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