We all know what home means. Or do we?
My wife and I have been living in Utah for more than three years now. We still have a hard time considering ourselves Utahns and this place our home.
You see, we’re both from the South. Although I was born in California, I was raised and lived in Texas for three decades. My wife is from Kentucky, born and raised, but lived with me in Texas for one year.
When people ask us where we’re from, we don’t say Utah immediately. “Oh, we’re not from here. We live here.”
When pressed on where we are truly from, we reply we’re from Texas or Kentucky, respectively. To us, “home home” is our respective home state, where our families are from, and where we spent most of our lives.
When people from “home home,” the folks who live in Texas or Kentucky, ask us where we are from, we answer back, “We live in Utah, but we’re from here.”
We bought a house in Utah and have established roots here. When we travel to our home states to visit family, we can’t wait to go back “home,” as we call it, by the end of the trip. By definition, our home is now Utah, but it still doesn’t feel like it sometimes.
Maybe one of the reasons why we don’t consider Utah our home is because we just spent nearly three decades of our lives in our respective home states. Or maybe calling Utah home is strange to us because the people’s culture here is so much more different from the cultures we’re used to where we are from.
Or maybe we don’t consider Utah home because we live in a stunningly beautiful area. It seems unreal. Our families back home think we live in paradise.
That fact was evident this weekend when some of my wife’s family from Kentucky came to visit us this weekend. We went hiking a few weekends ago through the mountains, and I captured this photo of quaking aspen trees.
The quaking aspen tree is the state tree, and it is one of the most recognizable trees in the area. The tree has a stark white trunk and leaves that turn into a vibrant yellow in the fall. Aspen trees grow in large groves and can be seen up close on the many hiking trails in northern Utah.
With this kind of beauty in Utah, why shouldn’t we be proud to call this our home? We indeed glow about it to friends and family who ask us how we like it here and highly recommend folks to put Utah on their travel bucket lists. We love living here.
Maybe if we live in Utah for 30 years, we’ll eventually consider this our home.
This article was originally published by the author on Medium.
Aspen Milky Way
Picture was taken Oct 2021 in Utah, US
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