Like any good indie music follower, I have adopted “Home” as my love song anthem. And, oddly enough, I happened to stumble upon some lovely people here in STL that share my sentiments, playing it quite loudly at least five times on Thanksgiving.
I would like to take this opportunity to write a little about St. Louis, my new “home away from home.” My dad, when I was going to school and living on campus at the University of Minnesota, used to differentiate between where I lived and my family’s house in Centerville as “home” and “home-home” respectively. I feel that now, more than ever, I keep these separations as I think about the apartment I share with my bf MC and that pretty little white and red home with the perfect living room that I find myself day-dreaming about. I’m hoping that my definitions will change in the next coming months. Already a few things have fallen into place that do make me feel more solidified:
4) I got a job
I work for a bank in the home mortgage department. I would rather not name this bank because if I do, all I can say is “I LOVE THIS BANK!” or “THIS BANK IS THE BEST!!!” or “MAN, DO I LOVE WORKING FOR THIS BANK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” yeah, I seriously am not going to ride the caps lock for this company (caps lock not required, but it would be for me to portray the ridiculousness of even making these statements.) ANYWAY: Now I have something structured to do with my days and again am contributing to society, yay.
3) I joined a community band
The band I joined I WILL name, which is Band Together. This group is where I met aforementioned STL-ers that share my love of indie music. I’ve been looking for a musical group to join starting back in September. I found my first old person band the second week I was in town and hit up the rehearsal that Tuesday. The key word about this band was OLD. The members were super friendly, and it was like a small family reunion as I played sitting between Mary-Jo and Larry, which happen to be the names of my aunt and uncle. I also met Tom, Jim, Daniel, and Bob: those of you who know me will understand this best, but those are all names of people in my family, what!? Crazy. But they played a lot of Sousa marches and like I said, I don’t think I would be getting a beer with them anytime soon since rehearsal ended at 9pm and it was way past most of their bedtimes 🙂 Honestly, I love all people and some of the craziest, most fun people I know are older/old/ancient 🙂 but it was far away and more than anything the music was not very challenging.
Then!! I got an email back in October from a group that I had contacted in September, Band Together. They were having their Halloween concert on Saturday and if I would like to come see them and then show up to a rehearsal a couple weeks after that, great! My friend PMc (P-Mac) and I went to see the concert and what did they pull out of nowhere?! The CARMINA BURANA. For you non music nerds, this piece includes “O Fortuna”:I knew then that this was the band for me. I spoke with the director during the intermission and waved at the trombone section leader at the end of the night. She will be known as KJst(K-Jist), whereas I’m Kj. KJst is by far the coolest person I’ve met in STL and it is because of her and PMc that I have any friends at all in this city.
**ASIDE ON PMc** PMc has been an amazing friend since I’ve gotten here, he’s become my fellow adventurer as I try to explore this town, we walk around Forest Park on “Sunday Strolls” and if I ever need someone to tag along with me to an event or something he’s pretty much always game. I basically wouldn’t have left my apartment if it hadn’t been for PMc because I hate doing things by myself. So, thanks PMc, ya shot-calla 🙂
KJst has introduced me to so many people in her crowd and her roommates are great. The first band rehearsal I attended for Band Together was right before Halloween weekend and she right away invited me to the party her house was hosting, which was a blast. I believe that we’re very much alike in a lot of ways and I’m glad to have another bonebabe/she-bone my own age to hang out with. She is part of a short list of amazing females that I have sat next to in band including CY & “Dixie.” Through KJst I’ve attended a few parties, beer school,Tuba Christmas, and a Foreign Film Festival held by her roommate. I may even join the kickball team come spring. The best event, however, was Thanksgiving. There had to have been over 20 people who attended Thanksgiving at KJst’s place, including some parents. The food was amazing (it was mine and MC’s second Thanksgiving, the other being held by his Arch friends who were still in town) and the company even better. We even went around the table and said what we were thankful for. Being that it was my first Holiday away from home(home) I thought I would be too homesick to enjoy myself, but as we all chatted and played ultimate charades I realized that in a way we all became family, even if just for one evening.
Who knew Band could do so much? Who has two thumbs and is named Kj? I’M Kj!!
2) I left my heart (appendix, actually) in San Francisco (okay, STL)
So, I know that getting your appendix taken out isn’t the scariest surgery, but it’s the first surgery I’ve ever had (and last I hope!) I got really sick in October and couldn’t figure out what was wrong, since the Flu shouldn’t hurt and usually doesn’t last a week. So MC took me to urgent care and I had emergency surgery at 2am. I had appendicitis so bad my appendix, which should be about as big as a large pinky finger, had swollen to the size of a small banana and was PURPLE. I know this because I asked the surgeon if I could keep it (which was the first question my dad asked me after he knew I was alright) the doctor shook his head, but he would take a picture of it were it turned out to be abnormal. He had just done two appendectomies earlier that week, so he doubted it would warrant photography. Turned out it did, and I was pretty excited 🙂 I wish I could post it but I wasn’t allowed to keep the picture either. So, STL became a place of a pretty big “FIRST” in my life, which included smaller firsts, like first time eating hospital food, first really big scar, and first time I went into the doctor without my mom there to hold my hand. I did get beautiful flowers from my parents and from MC’s parents, and a week later from my UofM friends which was super cool. But the best part of the surgery was realizing that I could do the big stuff, I could be okay, and that MC is the shiny-knight kind of guy I always knew he was. And, he can handle the gross stuff, which is important in a relationship (with me.)
I still don’t know if STL will ever really feel like home: I mention that I’m from Minnesota wherever I can and I refuse to call fizzy non-alcoholic drinks anything but POP, but I want it to feel like home, that I belong, and maybe not be so clingy about my “home state” because if there is anything less cool than the winters in MN it’s a sappy lame-o who doesn’t know how to let go. MN: GIRL PLEASE! Me: Whatevs, I love you . . . (*run away*)
Mom, Dad, Danyo, UofM Friends, Original Six, Snow on Christmas, Minneapolis, Brass Manor(ers), and of course my perfect little living room in my perfect little house in my perfect little town, I dedicate this line to you:
“Oh Home, Let me come home! Home is wherever I’m with you”
1) I’ll be the Jane to your Alexander
I referred last post to going through more crap in 3 months with MC than we have in 3 years, and that part of my world view involves retroactive destiny. If MC had never chosen to go to WashU, where would we be now? If he had been further away, or he had stayed in MN and we moved in too soon together. This, us being together right here, right now, I know will yield great things, and that being in a new place, separate but together, will help us grow together in a way we may not have in either of our home states.
“Home is when I’m alone with you.”