Greetings from 2,110 miles away! I write to you from The Land of Enchantment, New Mexico. Don’t know about you, but we’re spending our February break with my parents in the small town of Las Vegas, New Mexico. For those that have been following along back home, my parents retired to New Mexico this past Fall. If you want to read about my feelings on the issue, feel free to read here.
Anywho, I was crazy enough to embark on this trip by myself, without the husband. Two kids, two flights across the country, and one carry-on. I was secretly hoping some sort of drama would have happened so I could have recapped the entire story in this blog post but alas…it all went smoothly. Henry watched DVD’s, ate too many Twizzlers, and Ruby was…well, she was a baby. She fussed, she laughed, and she blew-out her diaper only once, causing me to have to change her entire poppy outfit in the small cabin bathroom at the front of the plane. NBD. NO big deal.
If you have never visited New Mexico, I encourage you to do so. It’s a magical place. And not magical in the Disneyworld kinda way. Actually, I wouldn’t know, my parents never took me to Disneyworld (I’m not bitter). The landscape of high desert, mountains, and mesas are breathtaking. And don’t even get me started on the amazingness of New Mexican cuisine. My grandparents lived here their entire life before passing away in their nineties. My mother was raised here and met my father (a Brooklyn boy) here in college. She even proposed to my father in my Grandparent’s kitchen. The kitchen that I am now sitting in as I write this. When my Grandmother passed away, she left the house to my mother. After a few years of having the house on the market, my mother and father decided to renovate the house and move from upstate New York to New Mexico.
The last time I was in this house was when I came out for my Grandmother’s funeral. Since then they have renovated the house but have still maintained most of the architectural character. I won’t bore you with the arts and crafts style details, or how they are obsessed with the Frank Lloyd Wright window panes. Even though the house has changed I could still “smell” the old house. It’s amazing how the senses can transport you back to another chapter in your life, or just simply ignite a memory.
The bathroom and the kitchen are the two rooms yet to be renovated. And that’s ok with me. The yellow wallpaper with 1960’s patterns still hangs perfect. And the bathroom drawers are still lined with floral paper my grandmother used. And it’s not creepy. It’s cheery. Last night we arrived and I stayed up way past my bedtime. I gingerly opened the bathroom drawers, remembering the cases of lotions and salves my grandmother used to keep. She had a salve for everything. I stood in front of the cosmetic wall mirror that hung next to the sink. You know those mirrors I’m talking about? One side of the mirror magnifies your image so you can see every imperfection, line, and pore on your face. As a teenager I would stand in front of that mirror looking at every zit I had, willing each one to go away, and silently berating them for erupting on my face. My grandmother wouldn’t rub my shoulder and tell me how beautiful I was, instead she would look in her files for a natural remedy for acne. Minutes later she would emerge from the pantry with a container of oatmeal, telling me that if I mixed it with water and smeared it on my face I would purify those pores. And I believed her. And it worked.
If you went back and read my previous blog post about my parents moving away, you could probably understand that I might be reluctant to call this house their home. I still think of it as my Grandparent’s place. With the removal of the old carpets, and the addition to the second floor, this house has been beautifully transformed. And now I can easily call this my parents home, but again not forgetting the generations who lived here before. As I grow older, I am continually reminded of the importance of family and remember where we came from and who we came from. And for the love of crumbcake, nothing rubs me the wrong way when people quote songs to illustrate a point, but dangit…I’m gonna do it. “Ahh, Home, Let me come Home, Home is wherever I’m with you…” Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes.