Tuesday, September 21, 2010
That’s the feeling I get when Yogi (my dog) and I pass this one spot on our morning walk. Most of our regular route through the neighborhood is classic American suburbia, but when we reach the bottom a certain street I’m immediately transported to Australia, circa 1991.
I remember walking back from a hair salon in Ivanhoe. The neat front yards, so different from my native Delhi, showed off pretty flower beds and the occasional well fed cat. The cold air on the nape of my neck felt weird because I’d just had ten inches of hair lopped off. The stylist had taken in the shock on my face as I looked at myself in the mirror and wondered if I was OK. No, I was not. The short sassy style was cute, but it wasn't me. Maybe shock makes for strong memories.
I’ve analyzed exactly what about that street triggers the déjà vu. Most houses here, if they have a fenced yard at all, have one that starts at the house and goes back to encircle the backyard. But the house at the bottom of that street has a fenced FRONT yard. It has flower beds running along the fence. An old couple live there and say cheery hellos in an accent (British? Aussie?) I can’t quite place. That’s probably it. And what a mistake that hair style was, I remember with a shudder. Thank goodness it grew out fast.
Confession: I’ve had another shock this past week. My agent and I parted company. I didn’t see it coming at all, but apparently, it isn’t that unusual. My friends from the Blueboards, the Enchanted Inkpot, and my local writing group have all been awesome, and it's thanks to them that I'm dealing with it so well, considering. It’s a business, I’m a professional, and I’ll move on from this and start over. It wasn’t that long ago that I didn’t have an agent.
Today, I walked past that Aussie house on the New England Street, dog in tow, face to the sun, long messy hair made messier by the leaf tossing wind, and felt cautiously optimistic. It’ll take time, I know, but I’ve been there before.