Leaving Lago Puelo and Thoughts on Home


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The delectable Patagonian ice cream we had been drooling about only days before seemed less appealing stepping into the autumn chill. Leaving town under a brisk, cloudy day we set a good pace alongside the road, corroborating Neon’s GPS with the Huella Andina markers which appeared intermittently on power line poles.

The day before, we had accomplished both grocery shopping AND banking. Exchanging cash took walking into two different buildings looking for the bank, then standing in two lines and well over an hour.  Not complaining. We were inside, where it was not cold, and observing small town interactions further warms my heart.

Everyone who walked in knew someone there. Besos were exchanged, chatting, places held in line without question or complaint. The elders and women with little children were ushered to the front by the others waiting. The woman behind me had on the same pair of Sorel boots I wore in the winters for running errands around Summit County, Colorado. The closest physical place I know to call ‘home.’

We talk about it as we walk. Homesickness. Neon has never been away from the US for this long. We talk through the  balance of giving air to our feelings but also not overindulging them and making ourselves miserable. I look forward to a few winter months down here to myself to write, reflect, and set up for the next leg of hiking. I also look forward to a few months to touch base with friends and family in the US and Middle East and to be able to share our vision of the years to come both in conversation and speaking engagements.

Maybe this just arises since I’m a person who has never lived anywhere for very long, but the closest I understand of ‘home’ is this gentle tugging in my heart, that there is somewhere I am wanted, loved, and comfortable. And, to me, that comes from people more than place.

Deepest gratitude to those of you who make time to reach out, say hi and send your encouragement and love. To those of you from along the way who open your houses, your arms, and your hearts. To those from afar helping to support us, so we can sometimes eat fancy ice cream or accidentally order weird not pizza pizzas with cold hot dog bits chopped up on top, so we can sleep inside when we get to town and have showers,  and have money to exchange at the bank. You all are my Home and that is why I can wander far and feel safe and certain.

That said, this is just one gal’s take. I’m curious, what is Home to you?

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Dejando Lago Puelo y pensamientos sobre casa

Traducción por Henry Tovar

 

El delicioso helado de la Patagonia del que habíamos estado babeándonos hace solo unos días antes parece menos atractivo en el frio de otoño. Dejando la ciudad bajo un día nublado y a paso ligero, establecimos un buen ritmo junto a la carretera, corroborando el GPS de Neon con los marcadores de la Huella Andina que aparecían de forma intermitente en los postes de las líneas eléctricas.

El día anterior, habíamos logrado hacer ambas cosas, hacer las compras y operaciones bancarias. El intercambio de dinero en efectivo nos tomo caminar en dos edificios diferentes buscando el banco, luego pararnos en dos filas durante más de una hora. Sin quejarse. Estábamos dentro, donde no había frio, y observando las pequeñas interacciones del pueblo que calentaban mi corazón.

Todo el que entraba conocía a alguien allí. Se intercambiaban besos, hablaban, tomando un puesto en la fila sin quejas ni preguntas. Los ancianos, las mujeres y los niños pequeños fueron llevados al frente de los otros esperando. La mujer que tenia detrás de mi llevaba el mismo par de botas sorel que yo llevaba en invierno para correr y hacer los mandados cerca del condado de Summit, Colorado. El lugar físico cercano que llamo “Hogar”.

Hablamos de ello mientras caminamos. Nostalgia. Neon nunca ha estado fuera de los EE.UU durante tanto tiempo. Hablamos a través del equilibrio de dar aire a nuestros sentimientos, sino también no excediéndonos de los mismos y hacernos miserables. Miro adelante a unos pocos meses de invierno para escribir, reflexionar y prepararme para la próxima etapa de senderismo. También espero con interés a algunos meses para ponerme al día con amigos y familiares en los EE.UU. y Oriente Medio y para poder compartir nuestra visión de los años a venir, tanto en conversaciones como en charlas comprometidas.

Tal vez esto solo surge ya que soy una persona que nunca ha vivido en cualquier lugar por mucho tiempo, pero lo más cerca que entiendo de “casa” es este suave tirón en mi corazón, que hay un lugar en donde soy querida, amada y me siento cómoda. Y para mí, esto viene más de las personas que del lugar.

Mi más profundo agradecimiento a todos aquellos que hacen tiempo para extenderme la mano, saludar y enviar su aliento y amor. Para aquellos de ustedes en el camino de los que abren sus casas, sus brazos y corazones. Para aquellos que de lejos ayudan a apoyarnos, por lo que a veces podemos comer helados o accidentalmente ordenar no pizza pizzas con perros calientes fríos encima, por lo que podemos dormir en el interior cuando llegamos a ciudades  y darnos una ducha, y tener dinero para cambiar en el banco.

Todos ustedes son mi hogar y es por eso que puedo ir muy lejos y sentirme segura.

Dicho esto, esto es solo una manera de expresarlo, tengo curiosidad. ¿Qué es el hogar para ti?

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6 thoughts on “Leaving Lago Puelo and Thoughts on Home

  1. marva weigelt says:

    What a great exploration! Home has gotten steadily more portable as I’ve grown deeply at home with myself. So home is not, for me, a place, so much as a quality of being, and that includes getting my basic needs met. I suspect homesickness belies some unmet needs for things like familiarity, comfort and ease. Even an adventurer needs touchstones!

  2. Will Keyworth says:

    great post as always, thank you. inspiring to boot.

    ah yes, “home is where the heart is” and, “…a way to a man’s heart is through his stomach” – so my home would have to be where the food is 🙂

    kidding aside, being a farmer, and a gardener, home is where i sustain myself in concert with the earth. i have had many homes, gardens, and farms, and though i may not still be there physically, each one still tugs at my heart strings, even more so as i am one who is very nostalgic and craves the “way things used to be”…and i yearn for the next phase of “home” somewhere where hopefully the soil is rich and unpolluted – Vermont has always been “the place” but thinking of other places, like Culebra, where i would set some roots. i wish i could *bing* you both there sometime!

    you are right in that “people more than place” is what makes you feel secure and loved, and being able to use that force to continue pushing forward…indeed home can be wherever you are the happiest with or without people anywhere on the globe.

    that is all. i think i started out on a philosophic note but ended in a disaster comment. oh well. i love you – stay safe, and godspeed

  3. Clifford B. Rawley says:

    Home is where you are always welcome and safe. Psalms 46 is help for me to remember my home is being close with God.

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