Home. What is home? What is being at home? One word with so much meaning. For me, home is where my heart is. That place where I can be myself. Let go of all pretenses. It is also being with the people I am most comfortable with. My husband; my closest family; my small circle of friends.
Till date, I have lived in three cities. The city I grew up in, the one where I worked and the one I moved to post-marriage. Each of these cities have shaped a part of me; which has made me who I am today.
The city I grew up in – ‘Kochi’ (in Kerala, India) will always be one of my most favourite place. Going back there is a feeling that can neither be expressed nor spoken. It has to be felt. That feeling is what home means to me. During the drive from the
airport to my parent’s house, I keep a look out to see what has changed – There is pride when something has improved and there is sadness when something old is no more. Even today, during my visits, I make a point to visit my old haunts – because it makes me feel whole and rejuvenated. A coastal city, it is practically like an island – if not for the fact that almost at every corner there is a bridge connecting it to the rest of the city. It is a quaint place (well not so quiet and quaint anymore); but the beach and the waterfront place is what makes me fall in love every single time. That was where I grew up. That was where I spent the first twenty – four years of my life. So quite a lot has happened there!
After being at home for so long, I was itching to experience living on my own. And that is how I landed in Chennai (literally – I did catch a flight there after all) in the state of Tamil Nadu, when I got my first job post – qualification. Now, for a girl who’s had a slightly over-protective life, this was a welcoming experience. I do admit it was overwhelming initially; but a small bunch of good friends and fun room mates soon made me feel at home. Plus the city wasn’t totally alien to me. I used to visit my aunt there often. So I pretty much knew what to expect. The one year there taught me lessons too. There were good days and bad. But the icing on the cake was that this is the city where I ended up meeting my future husband for the first time so hey I can’t not like the place, right! 😉
After spending a year-and-a-half in Chennai, here I am in Bengaluru (Karnataka). Marriage brought me to the city I was always fascinated by and where I wanted to settle eventually. In spite of not spending much time here, all the previous short trips I made to the city left me wanting more. It’s been three years now and I’ve managed to know
about one side of the city. I may or may not ever know the city fully but yes I love living here. There is a spirit in the city that captures your heart. You can’t help get caught up in the buzz and the positivity. The mix of various cultures make it one of the most popular cosmopolitan hubs in India. And though it hasn’t been too long here, yes this city feels like home.
Personally, I think it is not just a place that makes you feel at home – it is also the company you have. Though I like my alone time, I am not a fan of constantly being alone. In each of the cities, I would not have felt at ease if not for the people I used to be with. Each person has influenced my life. Be it my family or friends. Without each of them, I wouldn’t have been this much at ease with myself. I am sure I would have been a different person altogether. Today, when I think of being at home, the first thought that crosses my mind is being surrounded by each of these people in the city that I love! 🙂