Friday, 9 November 2007

Lost between Two Shores

"...Nowadays, I'm lost between two shores
LA's fine, but it ain't home
New York's home, but it ain't mine no more"

Neil Diamond's right. Ten days in the UK and I have come back jumpy and irritable and not knowing where I belong.

London was a noisy, polluted ant hill. I was a kid in a sweetshop at M&S Marble Arch. I hopped on and off the tube with my oyster card. I revelled in two nights at the theatre (not having been for years) and gossiped and fed with friends. London is all bustle. Here is all tranquillity. There, cars and people are nose to tail. Here, we cruise down empty country lanes. There parakeets fill the trees of Richmond Park with their raucous screeches and no-one looks up. Here individual sounds - a dog barking across the valley, chaffinches squabbling, a car starting in the yard of the next farm - drop into an underlying pool of silence. There no-one takes any notice. Here we "bonjour" everyone we see in our village.

I miss here when I'm there and there when I'm here. There is no longer home, but not sure here is yet.

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