Ministry of Propaganda

Ministry of Propaganda - 02/Aug/2005: "Where Is Home?"

[Previous entry: "This And That"] [Home] [Next entry: "Gone Walking"]

Where Is Home?

Neil Inactualfact has an interesting post about home (or in German: Heimat). I've had discussions with friends and relatives about where my 'home' is. But then 'home' has different meanings to different people, something I noticed in particular after I moved to the UK.

A lot of people call 'home' where they grew up and their parents live. They go 'home' when they visit their parents. I sometimes use the phrase, but most of the time I say 'I'm visiting my parents' when I travel to Bremen. Yes, it's where I grew up, but that doesn't make it my 'home'. I've last lived there 17 years ago, before I moved to Oldenburg to go to university. I haven't pulled out calendar and calculator, but I think over the last 8 years I've spent more time on Islay than in Bremen. More and more of my parents neighbours I don't know, I don't think many (if any) of the people I knew at school live in the area (apart from the fact that with the exception of a class reunion 8 years ago I haven't been in contact with any of them for 10+ years). No, I can't really call that 'home'.

Sometimes people ask me if I have any plans to return 'home', meaning if I will return to Germany as that's where I grew up (and still have a passport from). I don't know. The longer I'm away from it the more 'foreign' it appears to me. My life is now in England and I've spent far more time in Scotland than in Germany over the last 10 years. More and more often I find myself thinking 'what the hell are they talking about?' when I speak with someone from Germany and they mention current events in Germany. Sometimes it's embarrassing when I'm in Germany and I don't know what people are talking about or how things work in Germany. Euro banknotes and coins are unfamiliar to me (they were implemented after I left), so imagine a German in a shop in Germany trying to figure out what the coins are when paying something. I had a few strange looks from shopkeepers when I was struggling with the money... No, Germany doesn't feel like 'home' either.

So what does that leave for me? For me 'home' is where I live. Which for the time being means Swindon, England. This might change again, my future home might remain in England (quite likely as long as my employer wants me here), it might be in Scotland (if opportunities open up to move there), it might even be in Germany (although the longer I'm away from Germany the less likely this becomes). But that's where 'home' will be.

Where's your home then?

End of entry

Entry trivia

End of entry trivia

Advertising section

End of advertising section

Spread the word:

Do you like this weblog? Do you think others might be interested in it? Then please tell a friend! Thank you.