I sit here, Indian cross-legged style, with my Netbook in front of me, for the last time on top of my mom’s Honda Civic. It’s parked in a not-yet-developed cul de sac surrounded completely by dark woods in my neighborhood. The only light present is the street light placed at the end of the cul de sac behind me, and one street light about a hundred yards in front of me at the beginning of this woods-surrounded road I took to get here.
I had been looking for a place like this in Durham all summer. I wanted somewhere outside I could to get-away, but somewhere safe, decently lit, and close to my house. This barren cul de sac in my neighborhood was the answer to that prayer, and has been a place I’ve gone to for the past month. Ha, I remember the second week I came here, a car drove down this street, obviously lost because there’s nothing here, and as they U-Turned out of here they glanced at me sitting here on top of my mom’s civic. I wonder what they were thinking.
I’ve gotten good prayer time done here, have had moments of growth, moments of reflection. I’ll be forever grateful for this place in my summer of 2010. And in the same way, I can say the same about my time here in Durham, North Carolina.
For the past four years, I’ve been in D.C. more than I’ve been home, as I’ve spent my last two summers in D.C. and the most time I would spend here would be the two to three weeks for Christmas. Friends and family and church members weren’t used to seeing me anymore, as I wasn’t used to seeing them either. Well, my two months I have caught up and then some, and there is a piece of me sad to be leaving again.
First and foremost, I am grateful to have had the opportunity to see my parents as much as I have had. They are annoying to no end sometimes, but in the end we get along, and many times they’re hilarious. One day my dad and I would have a heated argument about what or what not to throw away in the garage, but in the same hour he’s asking me, “What do you want for lunch?” and the argument is over. That’s how guys are.
It’s funny seeing my parents together. They don’t always get together and weekly routine, if not daily, they’re always at one point annoyed at each other. “Your mom can never find her keys, I hate that,” “That’s how your dad is, he can’t handle the stress at work sometimes.” But they mock each other, make fun of each other, and they know how to laugh. It’s healthy for me to see their marriage, especially one that has lasted this long, and to see it’s not all roses and “I love you’s”. They talk to each other all the time, whether it’s because they’re upset with each other, or about something at work, or with a friend, they’re always talking. One of my biggest takeaways for me is when I find a wife, I need to make sure I can see myself talking to that person every day.
I love my cousins here, and all the new babies that have been born in the recent year. I love my community here in Durham, especially my small church at Holy Infant. I love the few friends I still have here.
Yes, my time here in Durham was much needed, as it was a time of growth, reflection, and finding a bit of myself again. And whether I’m in Costa Rica, Washington D.C., or anywhere else, Durham, North Carolina will always be home.