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Some Further Thoughts on Home...

I received an amazing gift while I was on the East Coast.  The wife of an old friend found out I lived in Ojai and she just raved about it.  She went on and on about how much she loved this town and how lucky I was to live here.  Her sentiments real and honest and bursting forth.  And it was through her love of my hometown, I rekindled my love affair with Ojai.  

I will be honest, I have wanted to leave it for the past few years.  I can’t give you any really good reasons why, just that I would like to be elsewhere...north and perhaps a little east.  Still West Coast, that is for sure, but really Northern California calls to me.

But it was in her awe and wonder that I found my own love for the place I live, the home I have and the people who share this place called Ojai with me.  It is a lovely place to live.  My parents are happy here.  My daughter has a great group of friends who are all good kids.  It is relatively safe.  We have the best 4th of July parade in the world!  Half the town is in it, the other half watches it.  It is a family centered town which at one point in time is what pulled me here.  Then I got divorced and all the "familyness" of this place really was hard on me.  While I did still have a family after my divorce, being invited to family events just wasn’t the same and it seemed I wasn’t really invited to that many family events anymore.  People taking sides in the divorce and I think people just not wanting some errant single woman around.

Most everyone I know in this town is part of a couple, and/or a family.  And that has been hard for me since my family life hasn’t really looked like that in a very long time.  I am perpetually single and all the family things people do, not really stuff my kids participated in for a variety of reasons.  I always felt on the periphery and finally I just stopped trying.  Honestly, I think it was a relief for all concerned.  I found other things to do with other people that felt way more life affirming then trying to fit in where I clearly did not.  Again, I think it was a win/win all around.

But this woman’s love for this place I live reinvigorated me.  It helped me to see that which I was taking for granted previously. I live in a beautiful place with some pretty damn good people. I am in the mountains I love.  I am a short drive to some of the most amazing beaches in the world.  My kids are safe here.  I have space to house my menagerie.  I was able to buy a piece of property that is lovely and mine.  And I got in before the market went absolutely bananas.  In short, I am indeed lucky to live here.

Yes, Northern California still calls to me.  And maybe one day. I will be able to afford to buy a place up there and live in both places.  But for now, I am here and all is well, really.

Sometimes you don’t know what you have until someone else’s awe and wonder causes you to re-evaluate your own holdings.  Life here in good old Ojai is actually quite grand.  And I am immensely grateful to her for helping me rekindle this love affair with a place that I have largely taken for granted for awhile now.  Sometimes, you don’t need to move or obtain something new, sometimes you just need someone to help you change your perspective...and a change in perspective can allow you to once again relax into a place you call home with a renewed love and appreciation. 

New isn’t always better.  And for someone like me who has never lived anywhere as long as I have lived in my current abode...that is saying something.  Sometimes the ability to sit still, look around, and renew your interest and longing for a place you already reside is the only growth you actually need.



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