Home – Fort Collins, CO

And so the journey has reached its conclusion. After six days and 3,000 miles, I have found my way home. With the welcome familiarity of streets whose names I will never forget and the ever-present mountains that mark due West, I have found myself among old friends and my steadfast family. Although it is a sweet feeling of reconciliation, it is also unnatural in the collision of worlds.

When I set out from Pensacola, I had my car and a few belongings, most of which I had acquired or used most after I moved out over five years ago. These things represented a separate world from the one I lived at home. True, I would bring home a few changes of clothes during the holidays, but the things I brought were always a temporary intrusion. This time, the things I have brought are here to stay. As I rolled my way along familiar streets, I realized that this vehicle in which I rode had never roamed these streets as I had. From the world of the Navy, of Florida, of my transitional life, this mass of metal, plastic, and rubber has brought me back to the place I grew up. In all of my travels over the past week, this trusty steed has carried the weight of me and my possessions safely to my destination. In that way, it has formed a bridge. The tracks I have left behind on interstate highways and along the city streets of Monticello, Jacksonville, Arlington, Pittsburgh, Chicago, and Pappillion connect two worlds that I had once thought were never to meet. In this final reconciliation, I have brought all that remains from that world into this.

Tonight I will rest my head upon a pillow I expect to be there tomorrow. I settle my things in a closet and in drawers that will hold them for many weeks to come. I will take my car along familiar routes that are to be criss-crossed in the repetition of commute. Where there were once two worlds, there is now only one. Drawn across the expansive United States, the connection has been sealed. I am at home in this world, the only one I have.

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