The very fact that I have a home and am almost home as I cross from Mass Ave onto nearby streets brings a very real sparkle of joy. Just consider:what makes home really home? I start to think about our warm, inviting living room with its deep red, mocha, and rich undertones with a few splashes of turquoise, burnt orange, chartreuse, and goldenrod here and there for flair, and then (well, it’s me, after all) about the contents of fridge, freezer, and pantry, and musing over what I will be fixing for the next meal.
I expect that this warm sentiment is perhaps a little accentuated because of the inevitable sight of homeless or intoxicated residents of Cambridge that I often encounter on my route. Last night, one stepped into our way on the way home from a gospel fellowship and would not move. Yes, where I live is pretty safe, but there are all sorts of unsavory, belligerant, and sometimes imbalanced individuals who stroll along or might pop out from a doorway. I was really quite struck with fear because normally, people mind their own business, regardless of who you are, but this individual was very relaxed, and calm as he stood blocking the sidewalk a couple of feet away. What did he intend to do? It became clear that he wasn’t moving, and as he saw us hesitate in front of him, I knew that he was going to say something for sure, and whatever else, I didn’t know. My roommates and I looked left and right, trying to map out quickly whether we could slide out of the situation peacefully, but, although much of the snow has melted, our escape route at that junction would have had to be jumping a steep mound of ice, squeezing past a few parked cars, and trying to get past incoming traffic. It really did seem like a long time, although it couldn’t have been more than a minute or so. Eventually, we decided to charge through, narrowly missing his arm while he called after us speaking utter nonsense, pointing at me and calling me a “queen” with the other girls, “her….what…royalty.” In this context, or in any other, I’m sure my response to being called a Queen would still be the same: I’m content to be just a resident of my little apartment, living my simple life.