Just got back from a week-long trip to Calgary and Vancouver. I managed to get some sort of mutant cold/flu thing, and may still have a fever. Aside from that small (though vaguely hallucinogenic) annoyance, My trip was absolutely wonderful.
I was nervous to be returning to Calgary. This was my first trip back since I left in July, nearly nine months ago. I was not sure how I would feel. I didn't know if I would be numb or hysterical or joyous. I was almost shocked to see it still standing.
I had a damn good time. I stayed with Natalee and Jeremy and the babies. Natalee's family was visiting as well, and it was a wonderful loud happy place to stay. Staying with them absolutely made the trip. The kids are talking up a storm and so beautiful and loving I felt like the Grinch, my heart stretching almost beyond tolerance.
It was so good to see ryan, whose company I had missed more than I can express. He's one of the good ones, the best ones. It was inexpressibly good to see Ian again, to see him walking and happy and whole. It was great to go to the KP and drink a little, see Paul and Jill, James Dangerous and Jocelyn, to be surprised by Steve. I saw Chris Blais for a special supplemental Sabbath, remembered how much I loved destroying my friends at a completely unfair video game. I had a great lunch with Prof. X and Jonathan Ball, where I was tormented for my inability to come up with decent titles, and introduced to the joys of the Special Containment Procedures project. There was very good wine and excellent company. It was better than I could have hoped or planned. It is no longer home, but it is a place I can go back to, and that is comforting.
The quality of sunlight is so good there -- a bit waterier than the light in California, as if it were skim instead of homogenized, but still so good and clean. I could feel myself photosynthesizing. I had almost forgotten how beautiful the bow river is. How good the air.
After the sun, it was time for some rain. After a few days in Calgary, I spend another handful in Vancouver. It rained nearly the whole time I was there, as it does every time I visit. The dampness on my face made me feel like an orchid, some lush green thing. It was spring, and I needed it. It was wonderful to spend so much time with Jason and Andrea, watching lethal amount of television and laughing my ass off at youtube videos. Andre joined us for Watchmen, which was possibly more awesome the second time. I had breakfast with JSamp and Costa, and chatted with Jordan about drifter's diaries.
My last night in town, we gathered at Chris and Sandy's to watch the Battlestar Galatica series finale (which was ass. but anyway). I had a fever by then, and was strange and vague I am sure. But there was a moment when I looked up and saw all my friends, and I realized that this place, this other city, could be a home too.
Home again now, my current Toronto base of operations. I wish all of my friends could live in the same, magical city. Or that there was a way I could teleport and visit them all whenever I wanted. But having many places to go, many possible simultaneous homes, is never a bad thing. After all, I've never been the settling-down sort.