How many of you have ever gone somewhere on vacation, and thought “I never want to leave,” and wished that you could simply make a new life in this place rather than returning to home, wherever that is? Everyone, I’m sure. I’ve had that thought countless times on vacation. The escape of the day-to-day troubles and stress of life easily has that effect on people.
Different from that, however, is a deeper feeling that a place could become home. Not everyone has had that experience when exploring a new locale. A feeling such as that makes leaving far more complicated. It can be brought about by a feeling of fitting in within a place, or a deep love and respect for a culture, or by knowing enough people in a city…I’m sure there are countless other ways as well.
I digress. The point of this post is that I have apparently just unintentionally stumbled into a permanent vacation. Details behind the cut.
I don’t mean that in the sense that I get to stay here and have no worries and no responsibilities and have fun forever…that’s unreasonable and the substance of fairy tales. I would never expect that.
However, I flew to San Diego on February 2nd for two weeks of vacation, and I’ve been made an offer that I believe I’m going to take. It’s too good to pass up, especially since my goal for the past year and a half has been to move here anyway. I arrived here a week and a half ago expecting a vacation, and have instead been offered a home. A place to stay. Stability, while I find a part time—not even full time—job and get back into taking classes online to continue my degree. I’ve been offered the potential to learn how to DJ and begin playing music at local industrial nights…to make new friends…to start on my future here…to actually begin what I’ve been trying for so long to achieve.
The only difficult thing about this opportunity is that I wasn’t expecting it. Obviously. I have a bag of clothes and belongings. I have my computer and my camera and my phone. I wasn’t expecting that this trip was a move. I thought through our planned activities for these two weeks, and brought the outfits and makeup and jewelry that best suited those activities. I didn’t plan for any sort of permanence. I don’t have my car or even my passport or social security card. They will have to be mailed out here.
I was originally planning to fly home on the 20th. I haven’t made an official announcement to my family or friends back in Virginia of this decision yet, although some very strong hints have been dropped. They will all understand because I have been trying for this for so long, but at the same time, I know they will be heartbroken by the lack of opportunity to hug me goodbye, see me one more time, or throw a going away party.
I’ll have to return there in a few months to grab the rest of my stuff and to get my car. It will have to wait until it can coincide with leave time for my boyfriend so he can fly back with me and we can road trip back. If push comes to shove, I could make the drive alone, but it would be more fun with him by my side. If possible I’ll try to organize that trip with the intention of being with family for my birthday. It’s February now. My birthday is in May. That seems really far off, especially for not having a car that long (I’ve been spoiled and very accustomed to being able to drive wherever I want all the time. Relying on catching rides/public transportation is going to be an adjustment).
I realized last night while we were out at a concert, that I no longer feel like a guest in this town. I suppose that is the first step. When I first visited for Thanksgiving of 2010, I thought San Diego a beautiful city, but it felt foreign and big and unexplored. I still don’t know the city the way I know Norfolk, obviously, but it’s growing familiar. I’m learning my way around. It’s beginning to feel more like a home.