I need a change. The South of France calls to me, Tuscany whispers my name and even India pulls at my heart-strings. I toy with the idea of moving and any place but here calls out to my restless spirit. My imagination soars and then my father’s genes kick in. I know they are his as he is from a long line of hard-working German stock. My father’s genes are leaden boots that tether my more artistic dreamy head to this earth. They say, “Look at your savings, you need a job for insurance and what good would running do? You will only take your problems with you. Save your money for a new computer and then travel next summer. The life you have isn’t bad, you’ve just had a difficult time. You actually love where you are living. You’re just trying to run away from what will always be. Instead, embrace it.”
I find this logical blood that runs through my veins soothing. My mother married my father specifically for his pragmatic blood. Her family is littered with eccentrics whose heads float in poetry, eyes crave beauty and have a habit of getting woozy on their own conversation. They are what you might call a deep thinking lot who often get caught up in thoughts of existentialism. These thoughts coupled with long winter nights have often led to a deep depression in many of the souls that sit in her family tree. Sadly, their blood carries a genetic cocktail that has led to more than one Christmas marred by suicide. At an early age I learned the proper way to hang yourself was by putting the rope along the back of your neck and not in front. “A quick snap and it’s over.” My drunken cousin informed me when another cousin had a “messy” ending. I was 9 and never forgot that simple detail.
My mother knew all too well her family weakness and set out at an early age to marry someone with solid mental genes. She refused to love anyone whose family fell short of her needs. She often exclaimed, “Breeding with your father was the best gift I could ever have given you.” My sister Colleen would always retort, “Mom, he’s short and shaped like a baked potato. I for one would be happy with a little less practicality and a bit more leanness and height.” My mother would hear none of it. “Your father has an amazing head on his shoulders and his genes are solid, grounded and practical. The blood that runs through your veins has nothing but strength.”
With such a genetic history as mine, it is no wonder why I crave the beauty of Provence but do not go without careful planning. While walking home from the Farmers Market this morning I stumbled upon the store Le Fanion and they were having a sale. Pottery made in the South of France was half off. I stood on the sidewalk clutching a golden-yellow pitcher and came up with the solution to my dilemma. I decided to move my bedroom furniture so that my bed faces south in the morning instead of north as it has for nearly 15 years. I will awake facing a new direction. “Is that enough change?” my internal voiced questions. “Probably not.” Is most certainly the answer and yet I also know a yellow pitcher filled with white roses will certainly add charm to the new view I am waking too.