When “Home” Isn’t Home Anymore

When I was 19, I made my first trip to the US on vacation and fell in love. I drove into New York on a chilly June night from JFK and knew this was my home, this is where I was meant to be. I came back every year for vacation after that and eventually I just moved to the US when I was 24.

This week I had to go back to my birth country and I felt like a foreigner in foreign land. I am from the Caribbean, and the language is English, but as I listened to people speak, it sounded like a foreign language to me. I heard the words, but could barely make them out.

I am living in the US for 31 years now, and the only other people I associate with from my birth land are my family, who I see probably twice a year. To say that I am a New Yorker is an understatement. I am so accustomed now to life moving at the speed of light that when I go back to my birth land, everything is moving in slow, slow, slow motion and it drives me up the wall.

People like to say New Yorkers are unfriendly, but I find that every where I go in NY City or upstate, everybody says hi. Customer service is not always the best, but more often than not I find service staff friendly and helpful. Not in my birth land. The attitudes of most of the people dealing with you, especially the women, is so annoying I just can’t explain.

I was there for three days, and although I love my mother and love to see her, I could not get out of the country fast enough. I can’t take the heat and humidity anymore. I never really could, but now with heart failure and pulmonary sarcoidosis, it can be a laborious task to exist there.

I flew back to NY yesterday and I honestly have to say that every time I walk into that JetBlue terminal in JFK, I breathe a sigh of relief and breathe in a gulp of gratitude that the US is now my home.

4 Comments Add yours

  1. Jim Anglins says:

    Interesting that you moved from the Caribbean and no longer feel the connection. Have you turned your back on your black heritage too?


    1. What a very strange comment to this posting. I have no idea where and why this became a racial thing? I don’t think that this comment deserves an answer.


  2. Susan says:

    Gotta say first – love your response to the nonsensical comment submitted.

    I took my daughter every spring to Manhattan. She was crazy about theatre in high school. We stood in long lines at 0800 for cheap theatre tickets and bought boxes of granola bars from home to accommodate our budget. Now, post college with her PR degree, she has made her dream come true and lives NYC around East 105th!
    I’ve gone up ( from Orlando) five time in the last year. The people are amazing, the city has so much. I love it!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. When I first arrived, i drove into the Bronx and this was 1981 when the bronx was not the best and I loved it. It was home. Now I wouldn’t be in the Bronx if I could avoid it, but NY is my home now.

      Liked by 1 person

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