Wednesday, March 19, 2014
On Naming Homes
I've always wanted to name our home, but for some reason haven't.
It's a funny, odd little dream I have, very British in nature but I think one that seems like a worthwhile endeavour.
The reason we haven't come up with an official name is because I keep thinking as if this house is temporary - which is crazy. We've been here for seven years and it's the home we've made as a family. The only home our 5(!) children have every known. It's lived up to the definition of "home" so many times over that despite it's falling apart windows, draft-y doors, and lack of square footage it deserves a moniker that expresses it's importance in the history of our lives.
It's the importance of place too, which we always tend to forget as our modern lives feel so global and disconnected from physical locality in general. But place is important, no matter how much we want to feel integrated, worldy, or well-travelled, and it's worthy of a reminder every now and again. The place you build a home and live your life is of great importance to yourself as an individual, your family, your community and culture. It begins at home, the exact four walls you live within. If your four walls happen to be in suburbia and not a fashionable district of your dreams, or a fixer upper heavy on the fixing, or my nondescript modular in the middle of nowhere, it shouldn't be the actual building itself or it's address that make it worthy of a name but the lives it contains.
The romance of this notion plays a part in naming your home as well. It's a delightful romantic thing to do. Like in all the great books we read houses have names like "Green Gables", "Tara", "Longbourne", "Manderley" or "Mansfield Park" to name a few. They hold and represent a rich literary story that simultaneously creates a perfect picture in your mind. But why have we modern people who aren't characters in novels stopped? Why have we moved away from the romantic notion that our lives no matter how ordinary are still important stories and that our homes are part of the tales?
We'll see how long it takes us to come up with a fitting "Andulsia" or "Top Meadow" for our little home.
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