Until next time, Missouri: Thoughts on home and family
It's late October and I've enjoyed days in the 70s, 60s, 40s, and (I hope for tomorrow) the 50s. Unlike San Francisco, I have had the chance to see wide open spaces and the colors of autumn that we so easily forget in the California coastal bubble. On top of that, I got to spend some relaxing time with my family, including my "new" brother in law and nephews. I'm quite the popular uncle--mainly because I'm mean, I think. Kids love that. Plus, my brother Mark was able to travel here between work and having to spend time with my other nephew who has been sick for such a long time (get well soon, Jake!). We're bad brothers because we couldn't remember how long it had been since we had seen one another. Luckily, ours is an easy relationship. Awkwardness is for those WASPy types who don't hug.
It's always a little bittersweet and depressing visiting Missouri. My life is very different than what is typically lived here. Not better, but different. Dense coastal city vs. suburban/rural middle America. It really doesn't get much different, and I don't think I could live here again. But my family is here. And that's a little sad. Time passes, and I'm missing things. I'll see them at most twice a year. So, I get to dip into the stream rather than enjoy the flow. Thankfully, technology helps. I told them we have to use our webcams much more going forward.
Still, I can't help my dad move things around the house via webcam. I can't pet Sebastian (yes, he's a dog, not the gardener) with my mouse. I can't give my mom and sister a hug when they need one. I'm a little ghost-like in their lives. And that, my friends, is a little sad.
But, life happens. And I love San Francisco and the west coast. So, I hope you can help me convince them to come see me too. I've got a bed and/or sofa they can crash on. I'm a decent host who cleans the sheets and offers a nice glass of wine with dinner. And SF is quite a place to play tourist.
Until next spring, Show Me State. Have a great (mild) winter and take care of my family for me.