The theme of this trip home feels related to community, longevity, and cycles. I've seen many people who I haven't seen in many years, but who have known me since I was a baby, and it makes me want to know the babies of my friends when they're adults and out in the world doing interesting things. I have a great community in Boston, but I'm continually thinking about where I'm going next. But this trip is making me think that I should consider more seriously what I have already built where I am, and how meaningful it is to me to have the connections I have. Even in the bay area, I would be doing a lot of starting anew to move there now, especially compared to Boston.
Tonight, we had dinner at the home of friends of the family who had their first date at my parents' house when I was a toddler, and whose kids my brother babysat and are now traveling the world, and saw people I haven't seen in ages and ages, and had great food and entertaining conversation and just generally felt really good. I love that, and how I feel in the midst of it, and as part of it, that I'm contributing to it, too, not just feeding off it, and it's just great. It makes me want to create (or continue creating) my own traditions, to build (or keep building) a community that connects hundreds of people to each other. But not in one big, amorphous clump so much as in lots of little overlapping circles.
Tonight, I saw people who I haven't seen in 15 years or more, because our families are friendly but not friends, and it was such a pleasure to see them, even though they're not in my day-to-day thoughts, but just... it's good to know they're out in the world, doing whatever it is that they're doing.
Jackson Hole is a weird place right now, deep in transition from old time ranching hippie town to destination resort. Land is wicked expensive, and what was here last week may or may not be tomorrow, so the sense of continuity I have from the people is so meaningful to me. And it sure makes the value of community and continuity clear.