Someone recently asked me where I am from, and I found myself grappling with the answer. I am fortunate to come from more than one place, both places share equal space in my heart as home.
Over 14 years ago, my husband and I sold our much loved home in South Minneapolis, Minnesota, packed up our belongings, bundled up our children, said goodbye to our families, and headed off to Malaysia to teach at the International School of Kuala Lumpur. We are still here.
Although the early chapters of my life were written in Minnesota, Malaysia presented me with fresh pages in which to record new memories. When in Malaysia, home is Minnesota. When in Minnesota, home is Malaysia.
Home is neither here nor there; it is simply yonder.
Inspired by poet George Ella Lyon’s poem, “Where I’m From” , I present Minnesota,
From Marshmallows to Mosquitos
I’m from hot, humid summers and long daylight hours.
From drives “up north”,
With conifer lined roads, crisp, blue skies,
the wind racing through open windows,
as the city falls behind.
I’m from cabins nestled up to chilly, spring fed lakes, from fishing, horseflies, mosquitos and sunburn.
I’m from bonfires, fireflies, roasted marshmallows and the Northern Lights.
I’m from forever, cold winters and fleeting daylight hours.
Plummeting temperatures of −60 °F that freeze your eyelashes,
as soon as the wind touches them.
From heaps of snow that beckon snow sculptures,
and snow forts complete with snow furniture.
I’m from shoveling snow, sledding and cross country skiing.
From layers of warm clothing,
to hot chocolate that warms you from the inside out.
I’m from patience and anticipation,
that green will once again grace the canvas I call home.
My home of Malaysia to follow in a future slice.