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I started working on the piece while abroad in Austria, following a summer spent in Louisiana. In between the two trips, I was home for just over a week, during which my family went camping in Eastern Oregon. It’s a long-standing tradition in my family – we went when I was very young, and I caught my first fish off the docks by Pelton Dam. A couple years after my parents got divorced, my dad started taking my sister and me up to a property his then-girlfriend had on the other side of the river. A year after they broke up, my mom picked up the tradition, and it soon expanded to include cousins, aunts, uncles, and grandparents.
The frequency with which my parents moved – they traded off, more or less, but I worked it out recently and I have, on average, moved twice a year over my entire life – has meant that I don’t really associate anywhere I’ve lived with the concept of ‘home.’ In general, I think of people – my parents, my sister, and so on – instead of a place. But, occasionally, the concept of home has to be linked to a place; it’s what the term means, after all.
This piece is devoted to the place I think of when I’m homesick; to weekend afternoons playing video games with my dad; to the halcyon days of my childhood.