Doug Rutherford

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Last Day at the house

June 2012
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I get to look forward to a bit of housecleaning today. It is a change, since I’ve spent about three weeks looking backwards. In all probability, this is the last night I will ever spend in my parents’ house and it does leave me with mixed feelings.

I lived in this house, off and on, from about 1972 until 1983. I have good memories and not so good ones. After all, there are few things like the angst of youth that are best not remembered. But, when I did move out, I always knew that the house was still here and, if all else failed, there was some place in the world I could return to.

However, with Dad’s passing and Mom being in a home, the house will probably be sold in the near future and, distance will prevent me from helping in the final cleaning and sale. In short, tomorrow morning, when I fly back to Whitehorse, I will probably be leaving the house for the last time and never returning to it.

There are, of course, the proverbial “tons of things” to do first. I have some cleaning to do, getting the garbage, compost, and recycling ready to go out, pack, and visit Mom before I leave. And, like every trip, I do have to resign myself again to the truth that there simply is never enough time to visit everyone nor to do everything I’d hoped on this trip.

I do recognise one important thing, though. Thomas Wolfe may have said, “You can’t go home again,” but, he was wrong. Home is not, while we do like to often think this way, a place from our past. Instead, home is a place of the present and is where we choose to make it. And, while I will miss this house and its happy memories, tomorrow morning, I look forward to flying home…


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