Author Topic: Where do you consider "home"?  (Read 1241 times)

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Offline IrishGuyLA

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Where do you consider "home"?
« on: April 23, 2017, 10:03:47 PM »
The topic about expat versus immigrant really hit home with me...  Right now I'm sitting on a plane flying from NY going "home" to LA... and yet, a few weeks ago, I went "home" to Canada.

I was just hanging out with a friend who grew up in Canada like I did... who lives in NY, and sees himself as Canadian, and he says "home" is Canada... and yet when people ask me where I'm from, I usually just list my passports - Canadian, American and Irish... 

I've lived in California for over half my life, but I still feel very Canadian sometimes, so in the US tell people I'm a Canadian which always surprises them - I get told "You don't sound Canadian"! constantly when they find out.

But when my Canadian/American partner and I moved back to Canada a few years ago for about a year, we both felt more American than we ever had - and everyone in Canada saw us as American! So we suddenly became American expats... and realized home at that point was California, and ended up moving back to the U.S. again.

But... because my grandparents were born in Ireland before there was a Northern Ireland, I got to register as Irish... I got my Irish passport many years ago - which horrified my "British" Canadian/Irish mother.

Since my grandparents were born in Northern Ireland, they saw the UK as "home", but lived around 50 years in Canada until they passed away.

I had an aunt who lived in the US but was born in Belfast then grew up in Canada, but called "home" the US... and my mother was born a year later after they all immigrated to Canada, so was Canadian but called herself British... (!)

My father, on the other hand always considered himself 100% Canadian, but in reality, his mother's family was British until the mid 1800's, and his ancestors included Edward II and Richard the Lionhearted... along with Eleanor of Aquitaine but he felt no connection to the UK or France at all. And even stranger, his father was from Germany which my father refused to even acknowledge and even went as far as changing his German last name to his mother's last name during WW II.

I was raised watching UK television program(mes), and never stopped... So in a strange way, the UK has always felt like home... I can't tell you what the Kardashians are doing (not that I care!), but can tell you all about what's been going on on the cobbles of Coronation Street since about 1972... I probably know more about Elsie Tanner than your average Californian.

While I'm trapped in traffic or at "home" in LA, I listen to the Beeb... and have always had a hard time here in LA saying "zee", or spelling colour the American way - it still feels funny - and I'm much more comfortable with Celsius.  Even after all this time, when I hear the weather in Fahrenheit, I convert it in my head to Celsius to know the "real" temperature.

In a few years, my partner (Canadian/American) and I are planning on retiring to England, using my Irish passport and this time will stay to get passport number 4... that's how I ended up on UK Yankee...

When we move, I have no idea if I'm I'll see myself as a Canadian, American, or just tell people I'm Irish, which will definitely confuse everyone...  I guess I'll just be "the Irish dude from California living in the UK who uses British spelling".

I'm curious, what do other people consider "home"? And how to you see yourself if you have more than one passport?
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Offline KFdancer

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Re: Where do you consider "home"?
« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2017, 10:25:50 PM »
For me, home is where my kitty cats live.  Rather simple.   ;D  #catladyforlife

When I travel from the UK to the US, "I am going home."  When I'm returning to the UK, "I am going home."

I run a local meetup group for Americans living in the area.  And it's always funny when we have an event and someone new comes along and we say, "So, where are you from in the US?"  As with us Americans, it's never just a single place.  No one knows where to say where they are from!

So for me, home is where my cats are.  My kid is much more portable.  She'll tell everyone she's American (she just turned 3).  My husband is working on her to tell people she's British.  Poor guy.  He focused too much on getting her to tell people her favourite color is Arsenal Red.

Offline JennyEye

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Re: Where do you consider "home"?
« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2017, 10:50:38 PM »
For me, home is where my kitty cats live.  Rather simple.   ;D  #catladyforlife

When I travel from the UK to the US, "I am going home."  When I'm returning to the UK, "I am going home."

I run a local meetup group for Americans living in the area.  And it's always funny when we have an event and someone new comes along and we say, "So, where are you from in the US?"  As with us Americans, it's never just a single place.  No one knows where to say where they are from!

So for me, home is where my cats are.  My kid is much more portable.  She'll tell everyone she's American (she just turned 3).  My husband is working on her to tell people she's British.  Poor guy.  He focused too much on getting her to tell people her favourite color is Arsenal Red.
Same, where my cat is is home. Though, I'm an army brat, so I have no actual home  per se in America. My parents retired to Florida, that where I go when I go 'home' but it was never my home.....

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Offline IrishGuyLA

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Re: Where do you consider "home"?
« Reply #3 on: April 24, 2017, 03:18:00 AM »
Same, where my cat is is home. Though, I'm an army brat, so I have no actual home  per se in America. My parents retired to Florida, that where I go when I go 'home' but it was never my home.....

It's interesting that two people have said where their cat is...
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Offline vadio

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Re: Where do you consider "home"?
« Reply #4 on: April 24, 2017, 07:59:26 AM »
Home is here in the UK for me; it's where I choose to live, and where I feel most comfortable. I 'visit' the US these days, but were my father not still living (he's over 90 now), I likely would not.

When someone asks where I am from, I do say I was born/raised in NC, but lived in several parts of the US. I also say that I am American by birth, but British by choice.
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Offline KFdancer

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Re: Where do you consider "home"?
« Reply #5 on: April 24, 2017, 09:28:01 AM »
It's interesting that two people have said where their cat is...

Cat people are weird, right?   ;D

Offline BriKH

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Re: Where do you consider "home"?
« Reply #6 on: April 24, 2017, 11:39:51 AM »
Interesting topic as I have been feeling a bit "lost" lately. I don't really feel like I belong here or there lately.

Florida will always be my home I guess. I love where I am from with all my heart, but my family has fallen apart. My grandmother passed away two years ago, and my mom and aunts are selling her home now. it was the one constant in my life when we moved around so much, so I am a bit heartbroken!

Here, I am yearning for sun a lot lately. Anytime it is out, I am out, and if I am not then I get sad. I'm alone for most of the day as I work from home, and I am not coping very well with life's stresses. I wish for the easy days in Florida but I  know they don't exist anymore so I am feeling a tad lost!

Offline KFdancer

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Re: Where do you consider "home"?
« Reply #7 on: April 24, 2017, 11:59:11 AM »
Interesting topic as I have been feeling a bit "lost" lately. I don't really feel like I belong here or there lately.

Florida will always be my home I guess. I love where I am from with all my heart, but my family has fallen apart. My grandmother passed away two years ago, and my mom and aunts are selling her home now. it was the one constant in my life when we moved around so much, so I am a bit heartbroken!

Here, I am yearning for sun a lot lately. Anytime it is out, I am out, and if I am not then I get sad. I'm alone for most of the day as I work from home, and I am not coping very well with life's stresses. I wish for the easy days in Florida but I  know they don't exist anymore so I am feeling a tad lost!

Sounds like a cat is in order!   ;D

I'm so sorry that your family is moving.  That would be so hard for me too.  You can go stay with my parents.  They are right by Countryside Mall.   ;D

Offline BriKH

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Re: Where do you consider "home"?
« Reply #8 on: April 24, 2017, 12:23:47 PM »
Sounds like a cat is in order!   ;D

I'm so sorry that your family is moving.  That would be so hard for me too.  You can go stay with my parents.  They are right by Countryside Mall.   ;D

Haha, excellent! Hope they have a pool! (kidding!) :-D

My Dad, brother, and aunt still live in the area, but my Dad doesn't have any room for my husband and me to stay with my brother living there (Palm Habor). My aunt isn't far from the beach and has said we're always welcome there at least. She is near downtown Clearwater. It was just that we always had Grandma's house to fall back on (she wasnt too far from the mall either off 590!)

Offline Karlee

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Re: Where do you consider "home"?
« Reply #9 on: April 24, 2017, 12:29:46 PM »
Before I moved here to be with my husband, I only ever lived in Ohio. I have two homes- here and in Ohio. I'm still very close to my family and we see each other 2-3 times per year. I don't consider myself British in the least.

My husband used to get a bit annoyed with me when I'd still refer to Ohio as "home." He took that as a sign that I was unhappy or feeling unsettled here. In actuality, being the non-expat in our relationship, he just didn't understand... We had a couple talks about it, and he's more understanding now when I refer to both places as home.

Hugs to you BriKH! Must be hard. I was heartbroken too when my mom and uncle had to sell my grandma's house when she went into assisted living. It was a huge part of my childhood and so many good family memories were there. It's been 3 years since they sold it, and I still think about it to this day.

Maybe a trip to FL is in order too? One of my sisters also has lived in Florida (Lakeland area) for over 15 years. She and her fiance (now husband) originally moved there for his job. They only saw themselves living there for a few years, but they really fell in love with it and happily settled there. Now, they have a lovely home, both have good jobs working for the same company, and own 3 horses! Oh, and 3 cats too  :)
« Last Edit: April 24, 2017, 12:34:39 PM by Karlee »
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Offline lorenausuk

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Re: Where do you consider "home"?
« Reply #10 on: April 24, 2017, 02:48:13 PM »
I was born and raised in El Paso, Texas but I moved to Houston when I married my first husband. I moved to England to marry my second and current husband and lived there for over eight years. We then returned to El Paso for a year to get situated and get my husband his "green card" (you could still change your immigration status within the country in those days). We then moved to Austin and Atlanta and have been back to Houston for the past nine years. I still tell people that I'm from El Paso and I refer to it as "home". Both my parents are deceased and I will probably never return to live there but I still say that one day I will because anything can happen. In the next few years, I will be returning back to England and I'm sure I'll simply say "home" is Texas. I asked my husband this question because he's from Greater Manchester but moved around with the RAF then lived in Germany and followed me around the US. His answer: "Home is wherever you are, my dear." Oh brother.


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Offline MPI

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Re: Where do you consider "home"?
« Reply #11 on: April 24, 2017, 02:55:18 PM »
I am also feeling a little lost.  I only moved to the UK in February, and I haven't managed to get a job yet (and only one interview), and we are also in the process of finding a new flat so everything feels kind of temporary.  But when I was in the US for the last couple of years it felt temporary then as well, because my husband and I (then dating/engaged) knew we would marry and settle here.  So I think once I get used to living here, it will feel more like home.  In the US I lived with my parents anyway, so it wasn't MY home, I was basically a tenant in theirs.
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Online jimbocz

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Where do you consider "home"?
« Reply #12 on: April 24, 2017, 03:13:51 PM »
I wonder what would happen if you asked a bunch of Americans living in America the same question?  I bet you'd get the same answer, a lot of people feel a little lost. 

I often wonder what it's like to live in the town you grew up in and still hang out with your friends from high school.  Do they feel a little lost as well?
« Last Edit: April 24, 2017, 03:16:39 PM by jimbocz »

Offline lorenausuk

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Re: Where do you consider "home"?
« Reply #13 on: April 24, 2017, 03:24:53 PM »
I wonder what would happen if you asked a bunch of Americans living in America the same question?  I bet you'd get the same answer, a lot of people feel a little lost. 

I often wonder what it's like to live in the town you grew up in and still hang out with your friends from high school.  Do they feel a little lost as well?

My sister has lived all her 54 years in our hometown and quite a substantial amount of our relatives have never lived anywhere else. She doesn't hang around high school friends but our extended family. Like I said earlier, both our parents are deceased and in her case, her three children live in different parts of the US and her only sibling, me, live away too. She is always telling me that she always has the "desire" to leave but realizes that she is "grounded" in our city because it's "home" to her kids and me regardless. So, I'm guessing the answer to your question is probably "no" to feeling lost.


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Offline IrishGuyLA

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Re: Where do you consider "home"?
« Reply #14 on: April 24, 2017, 06:20:26 PM »

When someone asks where I am from, I do say I was born/raised in NC, but lived in several parts of the US. I also say that I am American by birth, but British by choice.

I love that!
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