When I was six years old, we moved to a new home in the same neighborhood. The new house was a good ten-minute walk from our old one, but it all felt very new, with different road noises, creaky floors and different routes to school. The first few days were disorientating and unsettling.
The day after we moved in, our old labrador who had been with my family before I was born, went missing. My dad finally found him walking back to our old house. The dog had jumped the gate and was on his way back to his old home. Even though none of us lived there anymore he still saw it as his center.
Last month our favorite local coffee shop closed down. I still find myself walking past the closed shop in the mornings even though there’s no more coffee brewing, and the familiar faces I saw every morning have scattered around the neighborhood. I’m just like our old labrador, plodding back to my old home that doesn’t exist anymore.
After a bit, I’ll find a new morning pathway to a new local, new faces and new friends. It always works this way, but I’ve learned to savor the “no-mans land” moments between old and new rituals, as I wait for the new one to appear.
Me and our lab circa 1980’s