Sometimes we have that feeling – when a scent, sight or a certain touch of familiarity brings us back. And no matter how many years had passed, you are that person again.
I had that moment when I visit our home in Saudi. We visit twice a year but this time it was different. I went inside our house with a lucid sense of who I am, who I want to become and who I was. But no matter how much I have changed, I am back to my high school self. All the walls of confidence, self-knowledge and experience that protected me from the dangers of real world are gone. I lose all these protections that I have been creating and let myself be me. I am back because I am home.
The place is my escape from the stress at work, the burden from certain responsibilities and doubt in my future. I wonder how the four story concrete building and our 50 sq. apartment can bring so much security. I disregard the thought of pondering about this and enjoy the moment of being just glad that I am home.
My father kept the road carpet that my brother and I used to play; so as the boxes that I covered with my favorite comic book (W.I.T.C.H).
Around the house still lie a number of magazines and reading materials about the country that adopted us (with all the immigrants coming in Saudi, Islamic Culture is at least introduce in a different way).
But in my 17 years of stay in the kingdom, my parents remain loyal to our religion. They never failed to impart to us the beauty in being a Catholic. Of course it does not mean the one religion is greater than the other. It only illustrates the kind of faith that my parents have. So, much of our possessions are a combination of the two cultures.
But of all the familiar objects, it is the voice of the Imam that completes my journey home. Just across our house is a mosque. The imam’s voice (when he says “Allahu Akbar” or God is the Greatest) had been my comfort-a very tangible evidence that I am home.