Thursday was a long travel day and I think we all spent most of yesterday still trying to recover. We dismantled the Christmas tree, put away all of our new and lovely gifts, did loads and loads of laundry. Went to Trader Joes. Took the cats in the backyard for some fresh air. Showered, cooked, remembered the things we like about our little house, our little life. At the end of the day we went to the bluffs in Santa Monica, overlooking the great wide, rolling Pacific ocean, and for just a tired minute, we reveled in this place where we live.
It’s so hard and hectic to travel sometimes, but everything about being out in the world and everything about returning to the place you live, only serves to enrich life, I think. I tried to explain this to Veronica the other night on the plane when she was exhausted and saying she never wanted to leave California again. I reminded her of how much she loved her seeing her cousins and her grandparents, how fun it was to sled and to watch her uncle Matt build a snowman, how exciting it was to make new friends on airplanes and try new foods and sleep somewhere different. And again yesterday as she marveled over being in her room again, I tried to remind her of how it can feel to come home.
I’m not sure if she entirely understood, but later she said something that made me think it might be sinking in after all. We recently got a new car seat for Vera. It’s a little more grown-up, sits a little lower, and has a cup holder (her favorite part, naturally). On the way to Trader Joe’s yesterday she suddenly exclaimed, “Mama, the same car looks like a different car from a different seat.” I smiled at her in the rearview mirror, my sweet little girl who is growing up so fast. “Exactly,” I said.
And that’s what I mean about travel. Going out in the world, as hard and hectic as it can be, can give you a whole new seat from which to see your world, making the same old thing, appear altogether new.