Even places you’re not sure you like all that much can become "home" if you stay there long enough. I feel that way about Texas–it’s not a place that fits the way I think, but I made lots of good friends there and I miss them all terribly.
I was reminded of this when I read that Cicely Tyson just won the Tony for starring in "The Trip to Bountiful" on Broadway, a movie that garnered the great actress Geraldine Page an Academy Award in 1985. I was lucky enough to hear the playwright, Texan Horton Foote, speak when we lived in Texas.
Doing this play with an-all black cast was Tyson’s idea (the movie had an all-white cast). I think this is especially poignant because in 1985, which is when the movie appears to be set, racism was still on rampaging across the South (especially in little towns like "Bountiful") and the Houston relatives with which the elderly woman is now living can’t comprehend why their mother would want to return to a place where she was obviously discriminated against, when she could stay in a big city with much more progressive values.
But despite all its flaws, she wants to go home.
I think many of us feel that way about the places we eventually call "home," no matter what experiences we had there. I feel nostalgic for Ann Arbor, Michigan, and even took my(then new) husband there many years ago–this despite the fact that it was the place where my mother killed herself and I ended up living with a cruel stepmother, who even made me CLEAN (like some sort of "Cinderella").
I drew the line at going to a reunion in he little town where I went to middle and high school, however, after my parents moved to the country, just across the county line, to save on taxes. I could have gone to a public school in a university town and instead ended up attending school with the sons and daughters of farmers and assembly line workers. I made friends, but I had no one to exchange "intellectual" ideas with.
Except for my boyfriend–I remember how I lost my virginity with him in the basement under the family’s pool table.
Hey, maybe I SHOULD have gone to that reunion so I could see him again.
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