On returning home

I lost the cord that connects the camera to the computer. Darn. Darn. Darn.

I went back to Hampshire College, my alma mater, over the weekend and I have beautiful pictures to share. I gave a presentation at a conference at UMASS-Amherst. Instead of staying in the University conference facilities, I booked a room in an old Inn. It was exactly what Amherst is supposed to look like… the photos on the Web site don’t do it justice. It has a big old red barn just like you’re supposed to have at a New England farmhouse and it was conveniently located, too.

I hadn’t been back to Amherst in, I think, 13 years. It hasn’t changed at all (except out on Route 9, but the rest is still shockingly similar). And I’d forgotten how radical the place is — like radical politically. It made Boulder seem faaaaaaaaaaaaar right, which I remember being surprised by when I arrived in Colorado in 1993 — I’d thought it would be a far laft as Amherst, but it isn’t at all. I felt at home politically for the first time in 14 years. It was so exciting and invigorating! We talked about things nobody else talks about! I wanted to sit and talk and talk and talk with one of my undergrad teachers for a long, long time. Like forever.

It was bittersweet being back. I didn’t want to come home. I really didn’t want to come home. I actually had the thought, “What would happen if I didn’t get on the plane? How could I work that out? Who would I have to call?”

Of course, it is beautiful here in Lugano now — spring has sprung; the sun is shining; everything is in bloom; it is incredible.

I still wish I was in Amherst. It felt like home more than home does, really. If only I could move the people I love there. I will look for jobs there — I’ve heard a rumor that there might be one at Hampshire, which is my dream job. My DREAM job… so don’t tell anyone, Wendy, b/c I don’t want competition!

I feel like I am not finished seeing Europe yet, but being back in the U.S. this month I realize that for all this galavanting and political disenchantment, I am so thoroughly American.

Amherst offered an alternative to political disengagement, too — there are people actively engaged in doing something about it. If I ever go back to the US, I will have to be much more politically active.

Anyway, I’ll post the photos when I can!

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