No Place Like Home
By Audrey Pavia, Urban Farm Contributing Editor
Monday, March 7, 2011
Photo by Audrey Pavia
These three members of my welcome-home committee were among the menagerie to greet me upon my return from Japan.
I’m lucky enough to have a job that sometimes takes me to new and exciting places. The past couple of weeks, I was in Japan. It was my first time to this amazing country, and it was a life-changing experience.
While I enjoyed the bunny-shaped construction cones and anime characters on just about every billboard, I missed not having any real-life animals around me. At home, I’m surrounded by all my critters all the time. I’m used to feeling soft fur under my fingertips and warm noses in my face every day. But during my two weeks in Japan, my only contact with fur-bearing creatures was a brush of my hand on a semi-wild deer on the island of Miyajima.
When in Tokyo, I did see a lot of dogs walking on leashes, mostly toy breeds. I yearned to snuggle with them, but because I have no idea how to say “May I pet your dog?” in Japanese, I refrained.
So when I got home last week, I was happy to see my animals. Milagro nickered at me when I went in the backyard and called to the horses. My bunnies ran to the edge of their pen and stood up on their back legs to greet me. (Well, they were actually just looking for a treat, but I like to pretend they were just happy to see me.) Olivia, the Rat Terrier, jumped up on the back of the couch and barked at me for attention, wagging her entire body.
My cats were more subtle, as cats tend to be. They watched me drag my luggage across the floor into the bedroom and then followed me around the house, watching my every move. When I finally sat down on the couch to watch the Oscars, my computer in my lap, they quietly surrounded me: Cheddar curled up to my right, Bodhi and Erma snuggled to my left, and Stanley positioned himself on the top of the couch behind my head. The five of us watched “The King’s Speech” take the top honors.
Traveling the world is great, but when you live on an urban farm, there is definitely no place like home.
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