I suppose I knew this was coming, this feeling of missing home. Of wanting to just go back to where you come from, of where you “belong”. Perhaps what is surprising me is the intensity of this emotion, and the fact that I believed it would not hit me as hard as it has.

After all, I have always had the traveler’s itch, wanting to see things that are new and different. The “Indian uncle” version of Dora the Explorer.

How little I know of both, the world and of me.

Anyway, back to the urge to go back home.

It is a strange kind of desire, one that arrives in powerful waves that surround and pull you in. Strange because there are times when it comes without any warning, without the slightest whisper, and envelopes you until you can see nothing else.

In the early days of course, the reasons were not too difficult to discern. After all, you are surrounded by people and things who look different, talk different, and are bound by social mores and codes that will take time to observe and then learn. This holds true for life within the classroom, and without.

These differences, this “otherness” extends to the city you live in, one that sounds and feels so unlike the one you came from. Even the food you eat and cook tastes alien, somehow the flavors just not adding up even though you followed those handwritten recipes down to the last letter.

As time passes, as things become more familiar, the desire does not go away. Instead, it changes. Perhaps not in intensity but rather in the way it tastes. The sharp bitterness is replaced by a tinge of sweetness, the sadness of loss with the healing touch of memories.

Now, when the desire to return is overpowering, you smile because you remember more deeply the way your friends would laugh and make fun of you. You hear more clearly the mad rush of rain hitting the ground, a rain that felt like it would never ever end. You can almost taste that final kick of spice in that favorite dish which is only made at what was once your home.

I suppose this urge to return will never completely go away, nor do I wish for that to happen. For I want to be reminded of where I was, of who I was, and of the people and feelings that got me to where I am today.

For that is precious, that is something I would never want taken away.