Wednesday, March 31, 2010

A Sidestep To the Flashbacks

After writing my last post, I stared at the computer screen until it disappeared and old memories took its place. I was sitting somewhere reading a letter from my dad’s mother. Grandma was begging me to move back to Minnesota. I was her favorite grandchild, much to my mother’s frustration. Grandma bought me a new winter coat but my sister and brother were left out. Money was tight and my mother viewed it as an affront to my siblings.

Anyway, I often daydream about living in the country, safe from the violence and grime of the city that surrounds me. I imagine being able to sit outside at night and being able to see stars instead of the grey glow from city lights. I imagine hearing the breeze rustle through the cornfields instead of the loud speaker from the light rail station. I imagine smelling clean air instead of vehicle exhaust. The list goes on.

But this time, I sat and thought about what my life would have been like had I gone back to Minnesota as a young woman instead of meeting my hubby and having the brilliant yet acid tongued daughter I have now. What would it look like?

The fact is that I’d be miserable. Back in rural Minnesota there was no community college, no stage theatre, no symphony, no art museum, no major sports teams, and no huge library system to borrow books. You had to travel to the Twin Cities – a 3-hour drive one way – to enjoy any of these. Yes, I’d have the internet now but I would not have had the life experiences that led me to writing, or live poetry events, or fountain pens, or great books, or most importantly the people that have all worked together to push me to that constant stage of being curious and wanting to learn more.

However, now that I’ve had all that added to the wisdom I’ve gleaned from my life experiences, I think that at this time in my life or perhaps a bit further down the road, I’d still be happy living a more quiet, safe existence. Someday I hope to have that tranquil place in which I can breathe, think, and write.