There's no place like home, there's no place like home, there's no place like...Utah.

I'm having a hard time calling Provo "home."  I'm sure in a week, a month, a year, it will be an entirely moot point; that everything will click into place naturally.

It reminds me of a scene in the film L'Auberge Espagnole, in which main character Xavier moves to Catalonia for a year to study abroad.  Here's what he says:  "When you first arrive in a city, nothing makes sense.  Everything's unknown, virgin.  After you've lived here, walked these streets, you'll know them inside out.  You'll know these people.  Once you've lived here - crossed this street 10, 20, 1000 times - it'll belong to you because you've lived there.  Later, much later, each harrowing ordeal will become an adventure.  For some idiotic reason, your most horrific experiences are the stories you most love to tell."

But still...

The entire time leading up to this culmination - the months and weeks of knowing that I was taking a leap of faith, and doing so with a smile on my face - I didn't cry once about moving or about not knowing anyone when I got out here or about going back to school.  And then, when I was driving into Utah Valley, it all hit.  It came in waves:

I'm totally changing my life.

I'm going back to school.

I don't know anyone.
I've never studied this field formally before.

My family is 2,000 miles away. 

Who knows what the future brings.

As I drove into Provo Canyon, I got a little bit misty-eyed.  But then, I looked in the rear-view mirror, told myself not to cry, that it was ridiculous for me to cry, and bucked up.  I turned on Tom Petty's "Into the Great Wide Open."  I smiled.  

And then I called my mom.


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Lauren Kay House © 2011