Traveling is good for sweeping out the cobwebs, getting a different perspective, and… learning to appreciate home. I’m winding up my visit to Dear Old Dad, and while most people would be reluctant to return to all thirteen of the degrees floating around back home in Maryland (it hit 70 in San Diego today), I’m ready to blow this Popsicle stand.
I will miss Dad (I’ve already arranged for my next visit), but there’s stuff here I won’t miss, such as…
Grocery store parking lots with only one place to return carts (right near the store entrance), which results in loose carts all over the parking lot. It doesn’t rain here to speak of, there’s no snow on the ground, but can we take our carts back to where they belong? Noooooo.
Grocery store aisles that are so narrow, you can barely get two carts to pass. If somebody pauses to take a gander at all those yummy cans of soup, the whole store goes into gridlock.
A local news report that includes FIVE weather updates, in a place that has, essentially, no weather. A half inch of rain quadruples the number of rush hour accidents, and temperatures five degrees below average constitute a cold snap. Erm… folks?
City streets that are so potholed and badly marked, you’d think you were dealing with…severe seasonal weather year after year, but nope. How does sunshine create enormous potholes?
A town in its sixth year of severe drought that restricts people to watering lawns twice a week. What’s with that? Why doesn’t severe drought mean there are no lawns left to water?
Without this sojourn to the Golden West, I’d probably never burst forth into an aria about shopping cart returns, the width of the store aisle in the canned food section, or the pleasure of never having to water a lawn during the droughts we also don’t have (or something)…. but I’m feeling mighty appreciative of those mundane realities now.
Maryland is not perfect, but it is home.
The last time you stepped outside of your familiar territory or ruts, what got on your nerves? Was there any aspect of coming home that left you sad, or any aspect of a much-anticipated trip that turned to drudgery?
To one commenter, I’ll send a signed copy of The Trouble With Dukes.