Every month, I publish an answer to a reader’s question. Here’s a transcript of my answer to a reader’s question about feeling at home.
I’ve been an avid reader of your blog since you first started to publish your book recommendations online. As a writer, you might work from everywhere. Where do you feel at home? What place do you consider “home”?
That’s a great question, thank you. And thank you for being on this journey with me, it’s always nice to know that there’s someone on the other side of the screen reading and appreciative of what I do.
The short answer to your question is that I can feel at home in any place, or with any person, I feel familiar with. I can be in London and feel at home there because I get to spend time with some of my friends, but I don’t live there. I don’t own a property in the UK. Amsterdam feels like my “home” because I love the city and I have so many fond memories there, but I can also feel at home in Barcelona because I speak the language.
If you’ve never had to move in your life, you tend to associate a sense of home with a specific place. I’ve found it’s not necessary to be tight to one specific place—home can actually be anywhere in the world. There is a wonderful quote from writer Maya Angelou, who dedicated most of her work to themes of home and belonging, that says,
“You are only free when you realize you belong no place. You belong every place, no place at all. The price is high, the reward is great.”
– Maya in conversation with Bill Moyers in 1973. Source
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Thank you for reading. This reader’s question is part of the Ask Me Anything series. Feedback from you, the reader, is important to me. Want to ask me a question for next month? Send me your question via [email protected]