August 16, 2012

Seven Hundred Miles


There's truly no better word in my mind for it.  Leaving home and coming home at the same time.  I didn't think, or at least didn't anticipate feeling so sad...  I hoped the joy of a new, long-awaited season in none other than my beloved home state would overpower any feelings of sorrow or regret.  Yet, Chicago has become my home, too, over the past six years.  My family by blood, Carolina's rolling hills and deep waters call me home.  But so do my family in Jesus, endless motion and cloud-scraping wonders in Chicago.  Both have captured my heart, yet for such opposing reasons... 

I can't believe this day has come -- nor that I've had to push back tears (unsuccessfully) as I gazed down at the beautiful, lush mountains of Carolina.  What a glorious view...

{journal entry from May 11, 2012}

Thus I wrote thirty thousand feet up and three months back, on my exploratory mission to Greensboro, North Carolina.  And here I am, on the other side of our seven-hundred mile journey, settling into our lush landscape.  We're on the eastern side of the Smokey Mountains by about a hundred miles, so my sunsets don't have all the beauty I'd wish, but they sure are green here.  No el tracks stand between my apartment and the western skies, only a tall, deep forest full to the brim with little creatures... Carolina Chickadees among my favorite visitors to our back porch.  If only my living room and dining table weren't still cluttered with the remains of a move, I'd show you how green it is.  Oh, it's so very green.

Green is my favorite color; have I ever told you?  Chicago does well to litter the vast interior of its borders with miles of boulevards and hundreds of parks.  I always loved that I could walk or bike 15 minutes in any direction and end up in something akin to natural surroundings.  Ironically, the "parks" in Greensboro are not walking distance from my new home (more like a 15-minute drive), but the natural surroundings are ten feet away.  I think I can get used to this new way of life.

Have I mentioned how quiet it is?  All I can hear at the moment is the buzzing of my own computer.  If I open the windows a bit (which, sadly, I scarce can do here, as the heat and humidity keep windows shut this time of year), I can hear the screech of the cicadas.  Oh yes, I remember hearing that once in Chicago, one Summer evening in which I longed for this landscape more than anything.  And the chirruping of the chickadees, my new forest friends who come to visit me only for the birdseed I provide.  I can't begin to explain how happy I am that I can put a bird feeder out on my porch and not worry about being overrun with dirty old city pigeons and their dirty old city pigeon poop.  And yes, there is a train whistle every few hours.  Not the "beep beep" of the el that I'd become so accustomed to that I didn't even realize how annoying it was, but the deep-throated, tri-toned whistle of a distant freight train, taking goods from this end of America to the other.  I love that sound and giggle a bit every time I hear it.

Do I dare admit that I like it here?  I suppose it's kind of obvious.  But school hasn't started for Eric yet (did I mention that's why we're here?), so the loneliness of it all hasn't quite kicked in.  Once he's gone eight hours a day, I may sing a different tune.  A melancholy one.  One a bit more like this: 

Lord, I'm seven hundred miles from my home... May your grace and peace abound in this new one.


  1. Congrats on the move, both of you! Greensboro is (as I'm sure you know) a *lovely* city. I wish you lots of happiness there. :)

    1. Thank you, Rachel! I like Greensboro already! :) And I love catching up with you and that beautiful Rowan on your blog. Man, she's a darling!!

  2. Ah, my friend. We miss you guys, but I'm so happy that you're happy and settling into a landscape that speaks to your heart.
    And about dirty old city pigeon poop, a pigeon deigned to let some fall on Adam's hand as we were walking under the Thorndale El stop on Saturday. Heh heh.

    1. What a tragedy! Well, it's bound to happen to any city dweller; I'm pretty sure I've had a similar experience... heh. ;)

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