It’s currently 5:57 in the evening. I’m sitting at the kitchen table with two of my three roommates, all of us making some kind of attempt at our coursework. We only figured out how to use our furnace the other day and the vents have just started spewing air, sending our olive-green curtains into a flapping frenzy of heat. It smells vaguely like dryer sheets and maple syrup. The latter might be a result of the giant candle I picked up from the grocery store the other day. We have a penchant for smelly candles in this house, something that’s almost unheard of back in Mississauga. The smell hurts Mom’s nose and makes my littlest sister break out in hives.
It’s now 6:25. I had an issue with my laptop and had to reboot. We figured out what to make for dinner: pulled pork and mashed potatoes on pitas. I’m excited; I’m usually excited about food. I’m on my way home in less than a week; five days to be exact. Mom promised roast beef for dinner at least once.
I really miss home.
The other night, I abruptly woke up from a dream. You know, how it looks in the movies? With the sweaty forehead, heaving breaths and confused expressions? That was me, looking around the room I currently sleep in, terrified as anything because I thought I was at home. I was looking for the dark-grey walls and the dim light coming from under my door. When all I found was the faint outline of the balcony door and the streetlamp outside, looking like a ghostly, white orb behind the black curtains.
It doesn’t feel like my room. Maybe because it doesn’t feel like my house. Yes, I pay rent and I have a key that unlocks the front door, but it doesn’t feel like home. It feels something like home: temporary and disposable. If I never came back, it wouldn’t matter and I wouldn’t feel any different.
Now it’s 7:09. To be perfectly honest, I’m struggling to write this. The wait to go home – to see my family and set foot in my house again – feels like a weight on my chest. I think I’m gonna give my mom a call in a bit, just to chat and see what’s going on with her.
I’ll leave you with this funny bit of information. You know how when people get outrageously drunk, they sometimes call their significant others or the people they’re interested in and leave rambling voice mails about how much they miss them?
I was that outrageously drunk the other night and you can take a wild guess at who I called...
Photo Credit: Screen capture from Time and Date
Kayla Randall is a 20-year-old aspiring novelist with a passion for coffee, books, and driving around her hometown. Eldest of five siblings, she often misses home in Mississauga, but is still having the time of her life living in Ottawa and trying to make her mark in the literary world.