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Coming Home, Again

How is it that you come to call a place home, a place you weren't born and raised in, a place chosen one day when a map is opened, a finger placed on a seaside town near HSU. Sight unseen until your father-in-law offers to watch your dog, gives you $200 to drive 800 miles to check out this intriguing place. Discovering Trinidad, you're drawn in with hopes of sighting whales, you eat clam chowder down by the bay, walk on the pier, marvel at seeing starfish and otters for the first time in your life. This coastal hamlet inspires enough faith in you to rent a house, with no job, not knowing a soul. To live in this piece of heaven, you need motivation and creativity to make it work. Even with advanced college degrees your 33-year-old husband ends up being the Trinidad paper boy and you work at a gift shop in town.

Being a local in this place is so worth it, fresh caught barbequed salmon, picking blackberries, and savoring your first crab feast. Living by the rhythms of the tides, you delight in skipping down to the beach at a moment's notice, watching pelicans soar, spotting ospreys, sea lions, inhaling pungent sea air infused with the sweet scent of jasmine. Foggy mornings tempered by wind strong enough to blow the cobwebs from your mind. Sunny days here really sparkle like no place else, filling you with high spirits and the urge to dance! On a sunset stroll you hear a hauntingly, beautiful bagpipe playing on top of the Trinidad Head and proclaim it to be your favorite place on earth!

Life in Trinidad is idyllic, bursting with pristine, uncrowded beauty. However, you get some crazy idea to move away to Boise, Idaho, deciding that it is time to get back to reality. But this place has such a strong hold on your heart that after a week, you run back to Trinidad, saying hello to people you'd said good-bye to a week earlier. Townspeople joke that you took the long way around, driving 1343 miles just to move two blocks from your former house. They take you back into the folds of their community, rent you a house, offer fresh fish.

After the Boise episode, your mother fears you are having a mental breakdown. You are in a way, breaking free of old conventions, listening to your heart. You realize that Trinidad is your real life. This place healed all your rough edges. Like a piece of sea glass tossed around in rough water, polished by sand and stone, you feel smooth, transformed, having recovered your true self.

Standing on the bluff overlooking Trinidad beach, this place strikes a deep chord in me, resonating so strongly, I know I want to live here the rest of my life, raise my child here. Seeing Grandmother Rock on the beach, so familiar, so timeless, I know that I am truly home.

by Sherry McCoy

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