Earlier this week I came across a post that struck a major chord in me. Natalie from Hey Natalie Jean touched on how living in different places affects not only our current situation, but often also the way we see ourselves and to a certain point, our personality. Most importantly though, it affects our mental well-being. Hailing from a country of mountains, fjords and endless nature, Nebraska often has me feeling extremely landlocked and far away from everything fun and exciting. I sometimes find myself dreaming and planning of what my life would be like if I was living anywhere else. These days Italy, Australia and the Portland-area are all high on my list.
The other day I was watching, of all things, Anthony Bourdain’s Parts Unknown, and while his experience in this episode was a negative one (diving in Sicily) I still found myself longing for open bodies of water and having the freedom to frolic in a sea, fjord, river, lake. I’m not much for astrological readings, but sometimes I have to admit my Pisces-tendencies kick in, hard.
Other days I long for narrow streets, outdoor cafes and tiny balconies overlooking bustling markets. I know the feeling of the Mediterranean winds and the smell of the ocean in the middle of the city, and I want to be there.
While the grass is always greener, I never saw myself staying in the middle of the midwest for as long as I have now, but some choices are greater than others, and in this case I have stayed and am staying for an indefinite time. I mean, I literally spend my downtown at work searching destinations on Google maps trying to decide how far is too far for a weekend roadtrip. (My car is also in need of some replacement parks before it goes anywhere outside the city limits, if that tells you how desperate I get.)
The moral of all these rantings?
Well, it all started with finding out that I’m not alone in feeling this way, but ended in more planning and looking forward to the next time I head on out of Lincoln (May 6th) so there’s that.
Honestly, I might just be wallowing in my own homesickness. But what we do for love, what we endure for the people that hold our future. I am here because I can. And while the vacationless days of American work life are crushing, I also know that I will eventually be moving back and that I will be able to call Norway home again, though it will never be anything else. And I know that when that day comes, I will once again have access to cross country lines and explore new parts.
Until then, I am setting goals for my remaining time as an American. One of them being to visit (if briefly) all states, at least the 48 mainland ones, before we pack up and move. Starting, now!