In email chatter yesterday with a far flung friend, I was asked to name five things about being home that I love. I thought about it only seconds and then made two lists. One was just about me, Dave, the other was about me Dave with a disability. Because the question is answered differently when my disability is figured into the mix. Since we didn't do much other that just stay at home - we leave again today - because we wanted to experience home as much as we could, I thought I'd answer that answer here with you all.
1) Cooking. Joe and I both love to cook and love having 'real food'. As vegetarians we sometimes find that we can get 'meat free' food on the road, but that's really, really, different than 'vegetarian' food. So we love to make a meal. We were both tired yesterday so we cheated a bit with the cooking but we managed a wonderful little feast for ourselves. Something that we've never been able to get on the road.
2) The Mantle. We have one of those faux fireplaces up against the wall. It gives us a mantle where we have things that have hugely sentimental value. A glance there will take us around the world and deep into the past. It's the kind of stuff we'd grab if there was a fire.
3) Pictures. Yep, we have fridge art. For years Ruby has been creating art for us, and we not only stick it on our appliances, we actually look at them. We love how she carefully writes her name on the bottom and our names on the top. Sadie has begun to enter into the art world and now her creations have joined the mix. Every time we come home, every time, I stop and look at them. Odd how much they mean.
4) DVD''s. We don't like television very much. Well that's not true. We like some television a lot - but we like to have complete control over what we watch. Right now we've just finished season one of 'The Shield' and have seven more seasons to go. We watch regular, non box set television, only for the news and for Jeopardy. On the road one is forced, to fill time in the evening to watch regular television, oh. my.
5) The Bed. Sleeping in one's own bed is just plain lovely. There is something about being in one's own home, in one's own bed that allows a really deep sleep. For me, a good sleep in a hotel is equal to a bad sleep at home.
(Oh, Yeah, Forgot)
The very first comment reminded me of something I should have listed so I'm going to add occasionally here today as others remind me. So, this post is going to grow and change as the day goes on. I should have mentioned:
1) Towels. Our Hudson's Bay Bath Towels are one of the little luxuries that we've picked up for ourselves. They are, without doubt, the most wonderful, soft, warm, towels ever made. (Not that we've tried them all, but we've used thousands of hotel towels, and even the nicest don't compare.) We wrap ourselves up in these after a shower and know we are home.
2) Light. For Gay Pride a couple years ago I bought this huge rainbow disco ball to hang off the controls of my power chair. Then forgot to hang it on the chair. Anyways, it's so lovely that we've hung it up in the front room and as the day passes it casts light on different parts of the room. In it's own way it's a sun dial accurately recording the passing of the day. The kids love it. We love it. It, too, means home.
3) AIR! How could I have forgotten air. Within hours in a hotel room we have 'hotel nose' it's so dry. Waking up at night feeling like you've slept in the desert - needing moisturiser constantly - that's part of travel. Being at home and being able to open a window. Wow. Of course.
4) Laundry. Joe insists I mention laundry. He does the laundry and will tell you, without question, that laundry at home is cleaner than laundry in laundromats. Take this up with him not me. I don't notice. Sorry.
Dave, The Disabled Guy:
This list is really, really easy to make. I can't decide with is first so I've just done five firsts (cheating a bit with the numbering system).
1) Henry. Being able to go our in my power chair is just wonderful. I hopped into Henry's arms and off we went yesterday. We had some banking to do. We had to change a car reservation. We had to pick up some stuff for supper. And we came home. Travelling along side Joe, in our own home community, in my power chair, is a lovely experience that I miss a lot on the road.
1.1) The Bathroom. Everything is where it should be and designed exactly for what I need. The bars are placed just where I need them, everything is organized to make things easy and convenient. No anxieties here.
1.2) The Couch. It's up on blocks! It's exactly the right height for me. I've just spent a whole month sitting only in my wheelchair. None of the hotels had the kind of chairs suited for elephant feet, so I've either had to lay on the bed or sit in my chair. The first time I curled up on the couch it felt so incredibly luxurious.
1.3) The Kitchen. Our kitchen door is wide enough for my wheelchair and I can get right in to the counter to help with preparing meals. The stove is out of my range (catch that?) but we've divided the labour such that we both contribute and cooking has remained a shared activity.
1.4) The Bed. Like the couch, it's up on blocks. And like the couch, at exactly the right height for me to get into and get out of with absolute ease. I have kind of a 'Golilocks' experience on the road with beds. Some are too high, some are two low and some are just right. At home, it's just right, every night.
1.5) Worrylessness. I don't know how to say this but I'm going to try. Perhaps the best thing about being home is the lack of anxiety or worry about coming through the door. Every hotel room we enter is entered with a bit of anxiety. Will it be 'OK'? Will it be 'accessible.' How high is the bed? Are there grab bars in the bathroom? Here there is no worry, and of course there wouldn't be, we all design our homes to meet our needs - disabled or not - but the 'disability worry' that comes with travelling is such a huge contrast to being at home. I love not having to worry.
Well, those are my lists? Anyone care to share what they love about being home - from any perspective you want? I'd love to read. We'll be gone in a few hours, but just for three nights and then home for three. It will be heaven.