|My Chosen Home. Home: at its best, security, safety, happiness. Home: Secrets to Happiness, Finding Happiness in Life. Happiness Essays. Philosophy of Happiness. But What is Home?|
in my own, my chosen home ... my own home ... being at home ... at home ... home ... home is ...
|HOME WELCOME MENU|
Here, on a windswept
high plateau, is where
I've most come
to feel at home. MORE
Late summer, evening.
In my back yard,
ON BEING AT HOME:
HOME IS ...
IN MY OWN, MY CHOSENoHOME -
Just what does it mean - chosen home? To what extent do we choose our home, and to what extent is our response to certain places built into us? I remember loving the low rolling hills east of Calgary years and years ago - I felt good there. Now I live on a high plateau, a wide open space with a view over miles and miles of fields and forests. Right now the trees are changing color, much like when I wrote the word piece that became the spark for this project - in my own, my chosen home. The view is not so different from the fields east of Calgary. It feels to me as if there is something about wide open spaces, yet with rolling hills, that evokes a feeling of home in me - chosen home.
I didn't choose where I was born - Vienna a few years after the end of the second world war. My parents were lucky to have a tiny home of their own - one small room all to themselves, with their own entrance to the world. The toilet was down the hall - it was for all the apartments (if apartments isn't too fancy a word for where they lived). But a home of their own - that was something for a young couple in postwar Vienna.
But did my sense of home start there - apparently there was a huge window, bringing in way too much heat in summer, but also loads of light, something I've often loved.
Chosen home - I think this name came to me also because I'm the child of immigrants. To some extent they chose to leave - with dreams of a promised land, a land flowing with adventure, like in the Westerns my father had loved since early childhood, and a land flowing with opportunities, as shown in the films my mother saw at the Canadian consulate. Each of my parents chose to leave, lured by different possibilities, stirred by different dreams, hopes, fears. Yet for neither of them did Canada truly deeply become home - in some ways, one cannot choose to be at home. This was not, deep inside, their chosen home. My father had burned all bridges to a flourishing business - he would have had a hard time choosing to go back home, he would have had an enormously difficult time acknowledging that deep inside he longed for another home, did not feel fully at home.
I have chosen to stay. This is a choice - because in my generation masses of English-speaking people chose to leave, chose to make their home elsewhere where English was welcome, where there was no separatist movement.
To what extent, actually, is this my chosen home - and to what extent did I just never make the choice to leave? Did I really choose to stay, that is?
Now my partner and I are rooted in our home - our personal home. Our chosen home is also the closest large city - which was where we lived, home, for decades. To some extent Montreal will always feel like home. Out here in the country is my personal home space. But the city is home in another way - the stores, the streets, the parks, the restaurants, the people, downtown - and my work.
There is so much more on chosen home, but this is the beginning. In my own, my chosen home - thoughts, reflections, word pieces, music. My chosen home, and the chosen homes of many others.
This whole exploration of home started with one word piece -
This site is a home for me, a home I've never had -
My Chosen Home. Home: at its best, security, safety, happiness.