Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Travel I've been thinking a lot lately about my nomadic nature. Am I nomadic by nature or was my nomadicism (? nomadicity? nomadicality?) learned? Or am I just used to it?

My dad was a computer programmer for IBM, which, everyone knows, stands for "I've Been Moved." He worked on a lot of government contracts, so we would move somewhere and the contract would end or fall through and then we'd pack up and move somewhere else.

I'll attempt to create my own personal timeline of places I've lived. The first few are rough estimates, as I wasn't really old enough to know what was going on (and now I'm just too drunk to care - just kidding).

1966 - Houston, Texas
1967 - Gaithersburg, Maryland
1968 - Fort Walton Beach, Florida
1969 to 1972 - Lenexa, Kansas (preschool to 1st grade)
1973 - Newport News, Virginia (first half of 2nd grade)
1974 - Manassas, Virginia (last half of 2nd grade)
1975 to 1977 - Middletown, Rhode Island (3rd and 4th grade)
1977 to 1979 - Lenexa, Kansas again (5th, 6th, and the first month of 7th grade - my parents also got divorced and remarried - busy time!)
1979 to 1982 - San Jose, California (junior high - 7th, 8th, and 9th grade)
1982 to 1984 - Lewisville, Texas (high school, parents divorced for good this time)
1984 to 1986 - Lake Dallas, Texas (last part of high school and first year of college)
1986 to 1990 - Lake Dallas, Texas (got married)
1990 to 1995 - Little Elm, Texas
1995 to present - Denton, Texas (I've lived in 4 different houses in Denton, oh, and had a kid and got divorced, too)

So the longest that I've ever lived in any one house is 5 years.

I've been in my current house for almost 2 years and it's starting to feel like it's time to move on. Weird. I can't explain it. Restlessness? Maybe I'm just fickle - I think I've found the perfect house but then after living in it for a while I realize that it's missing something or there's something not right about it. Or maybe I just like the idea of starting over every now and then. It's an excuse to redecorate, get rid of a lot of stuff, clean out the closets...

Or maybe I'm just a glutton for punishment.

Oh, I know what it is. Firemen. I've hired off duty firemen to move me the last 2 times I moved. I definitely recommend it.

So maybe I should just hang out at the fire station for a while every now and then. Not a bad idea!

And even though I move a lot within the same area, I still feel pinned down. I want Sam to be with his dad and to grow up around extended family (which I didn't have). Ed called it being "placebound." I think that's a good word.

This area's not such a bad place to live, really. I just can't handle the summers. And it's not very pretty. And there are a lot of Republicans. And malls.

So where would I go if I could go anywhere? Hmmm... That's a good question. I want to go everywhere! If I could, I'd like to live for a year or two in a few different places and then maybe pick the one I liked best and then settle down. Could I settle down?

I definitely want to live in New York for at least a year. And Paris. Seattle. Chicago. Vancouver. Rome. Tuscany. Definitely London. And then I'd like to visit a few other places - Spain, Greece, Hong Kong... Then maybe after that I'd be content to retire and live out the rest of my life on my private Caribbean Island.

Well, that's the plan, anyway. No idea how to carry it out, though...

Where would you want to live, if you could live anywhere?


The Scarlet L said...

I haven't moved nearly as much as you have, but I still really relate to the wanderlust thing. My mother says it's our pioneer heritage. And as I've told you, her dad was as an engineer in the Army Corps of Engineers, and they lived in 16 different places by the time she was 18 years old. So maybe it is genetic.

I feel the same way once I've been in a place for a couple of years - ready to move on. I get excited about the idea of moving (though not about the idea of packing).

As for where I would live, I just don't think there is a "perfect" place for me. I'm drawn to the geography and climate of California, but not its cost of living or its earthquakes. I love New England, but I've never been there in the winter - I have a feeling I'd change my mind quickly. I've threatened to immigrate to Canada, but again, it's too cold. I liked living in Virginia, but it's still a southern state, and I'd really like to get out of the south. Colorado seemed like an interesting compromise - nice climate, nice geography, tolerable cost of living, and a decent blend of liberal and conservative.

John said...

Maybe when you're ready to move you should just burn your house down. That way you'll get to see firemen for sure.

Deanna said...

That's a great idea, but would it be too forward of me to ask them to load up all the boxes sitting on my lawn after they put out the fire?