In a couple of weeks, I'll be moving out of the place I've called home for over a decade.
Until then, every day I've been making sure to take time out of my day and walk through what is still technically my neighborhood street. Even if it's to just swing by my apartment and grab more items to bring to my new space. I've spent more time there in the last two months that I had in the last two years, my time and attention divided among too many places for my so-called place to be a priority.
I think it was my mom who called it when she said, years ago, that I didn't really have a home with the way I was always anywhere but where my rent money went to. And she was right. I never felt completely comfortable in what will soon be my old place. I moved there with some degree of reluctance. My then girlfriend along with my family helped set it up for me to the point hat it never truly felt like my home. I never truly felt comfortable even sleeping there by myself. I don't think I ever even wrote a poem under that roof, preferring anywhere but my apartment to write.
What's more, for years I've felt that it was only a matter of time before the landlords got sick of me using their space for glorified storage and throw me out. In the end, that's not quite what happened (in fact what happened was sadder for a whole lot of people besides me), but in the end it gave me something close to relief to realize that my time there finally had an end date.
In past cases where I lost my old home, I at least consoled myself that I wouldn't lose the area around it. My work is less than twenty minutes away walking. My girlfriend like the restaurants there. We like walking around the pond (something I never did until this year). I like the comic shop. I can easily hold Stone Soup readings at the local branch of the library. And JP Licks is there! Plus we can go there more easily than I can any of my other haunts.
I'm losing my home, but I'm gaining the neighborhood back.
The post office can go to hell, though. Eff that place for losing copies of my first book.