There and Back Again

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Traveling back and forth between Texas, Kansas and New York has been a special challenge for me. To quote Nelson Mandela, “There is nothing like returning to place that remains unchanged to find ways in which yourself have altered.” This time around, his quote hit a little close to home when I traveled back to Dallas for my sister’s “Spring Show.”

While I love the grey and low hanging Texas clouds of spring, the thickness to the air, the warm breezes that rush over you, I don’t miss the stillness of the place and the people. The lazy traffic, the stalled sense of urgency, drawn out and high-pitched dialects, all this makes me realize that I have not the patience for such trivialities.

The moment I stepped off the plane, into the oppressive warmth of Texas, I longed for the city trains to whisk me back away again. The southern “comfort” and niceities overwhelmed me.

But I really can’t complain, because in Texas, in Dallas, is where my family lives.

I climbed the blinding metal bleachers to watch my brother clench first place in his hurdle event. I had drinks with my mom and a midnight chat with my sister in my bed like a 90s sitcom. My stepmom took me to a flower shop as teenaged prom goers streamed in and out picking up boutonnieres and corsages. My dad napped lazily on the white linen couch as the afternoon sun tanned his face. With my DSLR in hand, my sister and I took a walk around the neighborhood pond, driving everywhere in her Beetle, listening to everything from Icona Pop and Drake and Tupac…

The weekend was amazing, I wouldn’t trade it for anything. But I was giddy with excitement and relieved to be going “home,” back to New York. In the taxi, weaving its way through Queens and Brooklyn, I was finally at ease, no longer restless for the busyness that “the city” has to offer.

Here, in New York, I feel free.

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