Yesterday at dusk, with a quarter moon rising and the first few stars blinking to life, I stood on a hill facing northward. Against the chill of November, not the faux cold of October but the real cold that rises from the ground, I turned up the collar of my jacket. My breath turned to little clouds and then disappeared.
I must have been directly under a landing path to Logan — miles enough away so I couldn’t hear the planes, but able to see them lining up. Farther away, closer to the airport, they turned from mechanical objects to stars, blending, just before landing, with the other stars on the horizon.
The days when I traveled regularly are becoming a vague memory. I now live a Mitford life, circumscribed by church, coffee shop, hospital, and homes to which I can, mostly, walk.
But as the planes turned to stars, I remembered that Friday coming-home feeling after being in a strange city and a strange bed. From Detroit or Toronto or San Antonio or Chicago or wherever the gods of commerce had sent me. I remembered the weariness from doing business, from making conversation, from negotiating, from haranguing and being harangued, and how the wheels of the plane screeching onto the tarmac was the sweetest of sounds.
I was home.
Home is always a stardust feeling, magical and bright. Putting the key into the lock, coming in from the cold, bags dropping on the floor. No longer a stranger in a strange land.
The sky got darker. More planes turned to stars. I whistled for the dog.
And we went home.