Where You Belong


“There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered.”
– Nelson Mandela, A Long Walk to Freedom
“No Trumpets sound when the important decisions of our life are made.  Destiny is made known silently.”
– Agnes de Mille


I.  Rainy Day Real Estate
Wednesday afternoon was a rainy one in Syracuse.  It wasn’t cold, but the coolness presented was through the raindrops themselves.  The sky was cloudy, which Syracuse is notorious for, but that did not damper the spirits of Syracusans.  The week has been going well, and my desired Syracusan Mood Survey has been for the positive.  The positivity was something I was anticipating; however, my hypothesis was staked–this was Sunday, saving the miserable individuals encountered on that beautiful day–on the other end of the spectrum.
It’s probably due to the fact that the unhappy individuals were stuck inside that generated their angst.
Within the first hundred feet out of the door, Syracuse showed it’s age.  We, Syracusans, do not live in such an old city–it was incorporated in the 1800’s to my knowledge (I would look up the specific date, but I don’t feel like referencing where it’s found)–when you compare it to other places in our country or Europe for that matter.  However, Syracuse looked classy today.  Although, she did not seem to measure up to its predecessors, the aura paralleled them.  Syracuse is always perceived beautifully to me, but today seemed to be much more grand.
Syracuse felt like a burrough in itself, and this could be found anywhere in a larger city.  Thoughts of–but not limited to–New York City, London, and Dublin came into mind.  This wasn’t solely generated by The Clancy Brothers flowing through my ear buds.  The feeling that poured over me cloaked my eyes, tricking them into viewing the landscape, which sent the messages to cause me to think I was elsewhere.  That’s the beauty of Syracuse:  when you think you have seen it all, you haven’t.  The city takes on different forms to keep you excited; and this goes hand-in-hand with the new businesses, apartments, and other refurbishing aspects in the area.
II.  Let’s Step Back for a Moment
There are several moments when I ask myself why I haven’t lived anywhere else.  The question of whether or not I am missing out comes to mind, but it’s been an eventful seven years of officially living back in Syracuse after the back-and-forth to Oneonta.  I’ve met a significant amount of people, and there have been several lessons learned for better or for worse.  It feels my glass is filling up to the point of superfluity.  Rising above the Syracuse naysayers though the years has been a feat, and it was easy to resist sinking to their level.
After two years of feeling out of touch, joining Twitter was a great thing.  At first I disliked the concept of Twitter, because I didn’t fully understand it.  I was a bit prejudiced to the concept of being limited to 140 characters and the lack of punctuation that some tweeters embraced.  However, my adoration of Twitter has blossomed, and the altruistic individuals met through there… well, they are to thank.  There are way too many of you to list, but you know who you are.  You each are individuals, who are significantly a part of the Buy Local craze, and who I have attached myself to because of your dedication to promoting everything local in order to sustain the economy.  From these individuals, the opportunity to meet and gather with local bloggers arose.
Meeting these people, although it is clear to me that I don’t truly know them since it has been less than a year (give or take), has made one thing apparent:  this is where I am supposed to be.  Who knows if I stay here or not, it’s great to know that Syracuse is in good hands either way.  These people love Syracuse as much as I do, and some probably love the city more.
Syracuse is in good hands with such charismatic people.
The fact that is that being here, at this point in time, is what is most important.  It’s that silent notion that makes one smile and say yes.  This reassurance yields comfort.
III.  Pictures and Other Notions
When I went to England in 2007, I traveled with my museum coworker, Liz, and it was to visit our other friend, Paul, who was studying abroad.  It seemed like an immediate decision for Liz and I to visit.  There is always a reason to travel, as I know now.  It’s just doing it, but having the appropriate funds.  Having someone there was a reassurance that life was even more special.
Silent Notion #1:  Liz and I were headed to the Tube, and we rode the elevator lift down to the station.  When we were on the elevator lift–why do I keep doing that?!?–a guy in a particular T-shirt was riding down with us.  The shirt read:  Earth Crisis, a lovable hardcore band from Syracuse.
Silent Notion #2:  To make a long story short, I had a dream years back, a year and a half (or so)  before I travelled to England, and when I was at college.  I dreamt that I was in a church with very blue stained glass.  In the dreamed church, there was a cross that was raised and lowered.  When stepping into Salisbury Cathedral, in reality, the notion came to me that this was the church in my dream.  There wasn’t a cross that was raised, but a rock or a weight; there was a hole to be covered.  I don’t remember the story completely, but this or something along the lines was definitely mentioned.
[I don’t like taking pictures inside churches, but I had to]
A year passed, and the desire to travel returned.  Through the Greater Syracuse Chamber of Commerce I went on the trip to China, which resulted in my being even more excited that I originally anticipated.  Although, I was traveling by myself, I seemed to have a one-degree-of-separation connection with the majority of people on the bus.
[Yep, climbed to the very top of that section of the Great Wall]
[Inside the Forbidden City]
When I went to Italy, the main purpose was to visit and meet family.  The fact they lived in Italy was simply a bonus.  Kidding.  I had such an immeasurable good time, and I left wanting a lot more.  My cousin, Adriano, and his friend, Gabor, were atop the Cupola at St. Peter’s when we had our picture taken.  We asked someone to take the picture, who happened to be an American.  The guy, who was about my age, was on a trip with his girlfriend or wife, but they were from Liverpool, New York.
Plus, Rome has a Hotel Syracuse.  What more of a sign does one need?
[Adriano, myself, and Gabor]
[Probably one of my favorite pictures that I have ever taken]
[Yes, Rome has a Hotel Syracuse]
Ireland was another heritage-related trip, but I went with another group from the Syracuse Chamber.  My very close friend, Kaitlin, came along for the trip, and it turned out to be such a worthwhile experience to share the experiences we encountered.  I encountered the family of close friends, which I did not put two-and-two together.  However… yeah… this trip was meant to be.
[Where do you think?]
IV.  Here
Now, it’s been three years since I have traveled, and–yes, you know–the travel bugs have formed a coup; they are not letting me off easy this time.  The need to get out and explore grows more desirable by the day.  If Syracuse is sending me into bouts of flashbacks and reminiscence, then there are destinations to be visited this year.
My cousin, Candace, and I need to start with planning the trip to New Orleans and Atlanta to visit family.  A trip to Chicago is afoot with my fellow improv troupe member, Alexis, and/or to visit another new improv friend, Lou.
I am definitely following a great path, and it’s essential to keep moving along this direction.  My gut hasn’t sent me too far astray.  When opportunity presents itself….

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