The Absence of Light

I remember looking down from the plane the first time I visited the East Coast, after moving to California.

It was December. I rubbed my eyes to clear my vision. Maybe I was tired, but it looked exactly like a black and white photograph.

Dead trees, dry grass, grey rocks.

Nothing alive.

I knew it would stay like that for many more months.

Which is why I was just passing through.

No wonder I was so depressed for most of my time living on the East Coast.

Except for my trips to New York City, that is. It felt like a different planet than New England, not just a different state.

But other than the City That Never Sleeps, everything else was dead or dying for almost half of every year.

I went to the supermarket during my visit, wearing my hot pink jacket with matching scarf, and noticed that most of the other shoppers were wearing dark colors with matching grim expressions.

Most of the houses in Connecticut are white and wooden with black shutters.

Haven’t these people ever heard of any new paint colors?

Apparently, they are all still using the original Puritan Palette.

In art school, my teacher explained to us that black paint, was the absence of light.

The absence of light.

So that was what I was experiencing my entire time growing up on the East Coast.

The Absence of Light. The Absence of Life.

When I was in high school, the talk of the town was a local photographer who painted his Victorian style house, in three different colors.

Actual color!

Actually three different colors! And none of them were black or white.

It was a scandal.

It even made the front page of the local newspaper. I kid you not.

I thought it was the most beautiful house I’d ever seen.

It was only years later, after driving through San Francisco, that I saw his inspiration.

Houses with actual color!

A lavender house, sitting beside a house that looked like the ocean, with its pale blue green shutters and turquoise front door.

At last I was home!

These were my bright and colorful people.

If you’re lucky, you find where you feel at home. Some people are born there and some of us need to travel until we find it.

That place where your soul feels alive. Where you greet each day with a light heart, not dread at the heaviness that lies ahead.

I’m so grateful to be living in my colorful, new, adopted world.

….

 

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