I’ve got my foot up. I hurt it t’other day when I trod on a toy, and thought it was OK but now – two days later, FFS – it hurts like a farking bastard and I can barely stand on it. So I’ve been told to put it up. Rest it in an elevated position. Cushions a-go-go. Ouch-o-rama. Bloody bastard cunting foot. And all that.
Right now, this very moment, it is resting on a snoozing man. Very comfortable. Warm. Better than a cushion. A welcome addition to my dwelling. Goes with my furnishings. House-trained. Will take the bins out for me. Cooks delicious fajitas. Yeah – better than a cushion, any day.
The man is a guest in my house. Has been for the last few weeks. He will leave tomorrow. To go back to his house.
Neither of us feel like we have a home. Indeed, we’re both questioning what makes a home a home.
I might have to leave this house soon. I can’t afford to live here and my landlady likes to be paid rent so I’m obliged to sort something out. At the moment, my solutions include: a) living in the park, and b) writing to Benedict Cumberbatch and asking if Moo and I could lodge in his pantry. I’m guessing neither of these options will be feasible, really. Especially seeing as I’m supposed to stay fifty feet away from BenCum at all times, the spoilsport.
I thought the likelihood of me losing this house would increase its homeliness but that has not been the case. In fact, it just makes it easier to begin the process of letting go. It’s not like I’ve been here years. It’s not like it’s been in my family for generations. The walls are only walls. The bathroom is mouldy. The yard is a concrete woodlouse palace. A home should feel special, right? A building that embraces you, yeah? Something that you put love into and get love out of? Dunno. In my head, when I think of home, I get images of a place that doesn’t exist for me. A house with room and light, with a library in a turret, and Moo’s sticky hand prints everywhere.
They say, ‘home is where the heart is’ and I say, bollocks. The ‘they’ who say that have somewhere nice to live. They probably have the luxury of feeling secure and grounded. Lucky bastards. Home, for me, will be a building that I own, filled with the people that I love and want to share my life with, and adorned with all the colourful shit that I’ve accumulated over the years. If that makes me shallow for attaching sentiment to material things, then so be it.
Of course, there are good memories here. Moo’s first steps, her first birthday, her first proper Christmas. Anything she has done here, actually, makes it special in some way. But it is only temporary. I still have bags and boxes of belongings stacked about, which adds to the aura of pervading transience. Are we already on our way to elsewhere? Who knows. If I could, and if I had the means, I’d be out of here tomorrow, to try and find that elusive home.
My man-cushion has moved now, to pastures more conducive to his desire for sleep. Another tetherless soul. Both of us unbound by the bastards of circumstance.
What is ‘home’ for you? Are you where you want to be? And can we come and live in your pantry?