I heard the Bon Jovi song “Who Says You Can’t Go Home” a couple of times this weekend while at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland. During the song he realizes that you can go home no matter how far you’ve traveled. It got me thinking since I was “home” that weekend.
I’ve written about all of the places I’ve called home before, but this weekend I went to what I’d call my hometown – Canton, Ohio.
In the seven years I’ve called Florida my home I’ve been to Ohio a handful of times. When you live in the vacation capital of the country and it doesn’t snow in January here like it does in Ohio, most of my visits with hometown friends happen in Florida (and in the winter).
It is strange being “home” in Ohio. I really only lived there about ten years. Five of the ten were when I was a baby and in elementary school – so there are very little real memories. The other four are my high school years, so there are obviously more memories from then.
Driving around Ohio makes me feel a little bit like I’m somewhere I know, but then again I don’t know it. You can imagine the amount of stores that have changed names, restaurants that have changed, buildings that have been built or torn down. It is all a little unsettling. I know I am “home”, but it sure isn’t the home I know from 20 years ago.
We did drive by the Target, breakfast restaurant, and pizza place I worked at in high school and during college summer breaks. All three are still there. The Target has not even changed on the inside, it was a little like a time warp – especially since I am used to our very new, modern Target here in Florida.
When we were all gathered with family and friends that we have been seeing for our entire marriage, and my whole life, that’s when I felt I was at home. At one point in the evening my husband even said that every time we get together it feels like we haven’t changed or aged and we just pick up where we left off.
I guess my husband’s observation negates the title of the Bon Jovi song. You can go home. The streets, stores and restaurants might have changed along with all the trees around the house growing up – but you can go home, because none of those things are home. Home is your friends and family – whether they are in Ohio or Florida.