Well, actually, I am moving, not the zip code, the area it represents, or this blog (or website). It’s a change of base of operations, home for lack of a better word. Though I can’t think of any better word than home. And so, in a figurative way, this virtual “02138,” the one always in my head, because I have discovered that indeed 02138 is a state of mind more than a place, will be moving with me, the (still) possessor of that head.
02138, the geographic location, has been home in some sense for over 25 years, 26 this November, by which time I expect the world will have to reach me by mail, real mail, snail mail, involving paper and ink—the good stuff—at a different zip code. It hardly matters to me at this point, though I’ll admit there are things I’ll miss, for a while at least. We get used to what we do, where we go and who we see.
One reason for the move, among the many and not to mention the many good ones, is that among the people I see or can count on seeing in person and in the flesh too many have moved on. Some, of course, have passed on, as the saying goes, and they are not reachable at any zip code known to me. But many more, thank goodness a great many more, are still among us in the world at large, actively engaged in what McEwan calls this “brief privilege of consciousness,” have simply moved. Most of them did so, in terms of the brief spans of time in which I seem to be aware of its passage, long since. Some of my dearest friends have scattered far in this great country known as the United States. This one to that state, that one to another, and so forth. Some do remain in Cambridge, largely in the same as I (for now) confines of the eponymous zip code of this blog. Now, we, by dint of this impending move of mine, will be visitors and guests. At least nominally. Friends are, to me, never guests in my house.
And, of course, I have other “homes.” And if the idea sits ill with you of having more than one home, as I do not mean the word as a synonym for abode or dwelling, then all I am saying is that I have at least one other house, a secondary residence for legal and fiscal purposes, in the south of France (I say all this as much, if not more, for the French authorities; does anyone imagine they are reading this obscure little blog in another country? Now that would be paranoia…). But in my mind, where homes and friends are certified and always dwell, quite near to me, if only in the abstract, Provence is as much home as Harvard Square. Sometimes more so for the longing it inspires, even when I am smack in the middle of it, surveying the landscape in all directions from my roof.
However, I’m beginning to go a bit far afield, having taken myself and you for a moment 3500 miles from 02138 to a rooftop in the la France profonde. To return to earth, and to the imminent move, it will be sometime in the weeks to come—a broad categorization that plural, as it may, in fact, amount to a couple of months at least.
You’ll still be able to find me here in virtual space, though I admit I have been scarce in these precincts (not to mention others where I’ve hung other, slightly different, hats in the past, here on the greater Internet). I am hoping with some settlement in my life, in several dimensions, I will have the freedom and the inspiration, and the motivation to fire up those engines of creation and make more regular contributions to ever-expanding sea of words.
I merely thought it appropriate that those who still follow me, or hope to, by these means, and in this particular place, should anticipate a change of great significance to me, and I would hope cause nary a ripple in their quotidian, without it being a complete surprise. It will, when it happens be a kind of surprise to me. I hardly think of uprooting oneself in this way, much as I look forward to it and expect a great salutary benefit, as quotidian.
As they say, “stay tuned.”