It is nice to be here. To open the drawers and see knives that you remember from your childhood, to revert a little bit to that feeling that you are in your parent's house and not quite totally responsible. To walk on sidewalks your father and grandfather walked on. To be amazed at my mother who is handling 82 by proceeding with a schedule and a life of someone who is about 32. She is at all kids events, still tutors reading at the school, reads the paper before I am even up and then wants to discuss it.
Of course having a baby here has revived extensive discussions about the babyhoods of everyone in the extended family. Who was a good sleeper and eater. When who crawled and walked when. Nearly every story is exactly the same, how some child was totally hopeless and some mother did the wrong thing, but always that the kid turned out just fine.
I also realize that to my family the real me is the sewer. I sewed all the time I was growing up and they are used to my mammoth fabric purchases. All the other jobs and things I have done don't really matter, to them I am the sewer. In the first hour I was here my sister gave me a skirt to make a pattern copy for her from, in the first morning I was off to the big discount fabric place here that I traditionally visit every day of every visit. Lingerie elastics for next to nothing, knits, cottons for tops and most importantly some African cotton for a summer dress. I love, love African prints. I am a bright colour, geometric pattern not flower type of girl, not being a small person, and African cotton is nice to sew. I am pretty pleased with this.
Oh and the baby story about me?
I didn't crawl until I was a year old and walk until I was 16 months old. But before my first birthday I was way ahead at what I liked best - sitting behind the curtains and unpicking the hems.
And I have had a seam ripper in my hand ever since.