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Memories of Home

photography & words by Ryan Itchon

ESSAY/

JULY 2015 | NESTING

 

'The ache for home lives in all of us. The safe place where we can go as we are and not be questioned.'
 

― Maya Angelou

 

Sometimes career choices, finances or relationships force you to move temporarily away from home. Your life changes when you no longer see a familiar face in the morning when you wake, or when you no longer socialise with your favourite barista at your neighbourhood café who serves the best coffee in town, gone are the trips to your favourite local museum and things that once were reality soon feel like a dream. Temporarily leaving home can be as little as six months to six years, which seems like forever. For me a career decision in my life has changed everything forcing me to be away from my dear family, friends, and my favourite hang out spots to what I claim as home in my heart.

  • Pictures are the perfect way to fill your space with treasured memories of home. They take you back to an exact moment where you find yourself reminiscing the great times you had with family and friends. Having a collection of assorted souvenirs, mugs from your favourite coffee shop, magnets, and clothing such as graphic T’s are ways to always remember home.
  • Whether you are relaxing on a Sunday morning, organising your space, cooking or crafting, playing songs that remind you of that concert or festival you went to when you were young can alleviate the longing for home. I often place a vinyl or CD on the player that I purchased from my favourite record store, listening to it reminds me of an unforgettable party where I danced the night away. 
  • In the morning there is really nothing better than waking up to the smell of fresh coffee brewing, perhaps the smell of bacon too. I often purchase roasted coffee online from my favourite coffee shop. Growing up in a house full of sweet scents, I place scented candles with the same fragrances that remind me of home and my loved ones. 
  • Just like the scent of coffee, taste also reminds me of home. Making pancakes in the morning or crepes for dessert in the evening and cooking traditional family recipes passed down through generations fills the belly and satisfies the soul and appetite. 
  • Bringing items that encapsulate home can recreate the feeling of home within your new nest. A simple blanket to keep you warm throughout the winter seasons and rainy days can envelope you in sweet dreams of the familiar. Instruments that play tunes of your youth can bring back moments once so dear. 

 Although, I have been away from home for about 4 years now, I still carry bits and pieces of things that remind me of home, things that make me feel like I never left my town. Filling your temporary living quarters with visuals, sounds, smells and even tastes of your old place can (even for a moment) make you feel like you are right at home.