A “home marker” (for lack of a better phrase) is a place that reminds a person of their ties to a particular geographical area at a very primordial level. It is the place that you realise Sri Lanka is your true home no matter where you go. All the things you took for granted about the place become vivid in their significance. The litany of things people whine about seem ridiculously superficial even when they are not. The realisation is impossible to describe but brutally apparent when you feel it. The shock of that awareness can make you very happy. Or lather on a layer of saddens over your entire life. I’m convince that everybody either has found such a place or is subliminally searching for it.
I found my “home marker” a while back in the oddest of places: Thimbirigasyaya junction in Colombo (approximate location in the Google Earth image below). For many an unglamorous non scenic place perceived as an obstacle to overcome. For me a place of sudden and deep realisation (odd no?).
Which it hit me in-front of the Asokaramaya gate while stuck in traffic trying to get on to Havelock road . The airconditionless old car I was driving was baking in the 3pm heat. The usual Colombo traffic drama swirled, honked and farted its fumes. I didn’t care because I was washed over with a blissful sense of being at home. In the place where I belonged (sorry John Denver).
The realisations of that moment are still with me today. That moment has enabled me to find the sensation of home in oddest things – like the ripe orange of the Colombo sunsets. Or morning sun shining through the leaves of the neighbour’s ordinance violating coconut tree and all over my parent’s place. I’m also quite willing to lie about it so I won’t look like some dreamy idiot.
I can ramble on endlessly but I won’t and get to the big question(s): Have your found you “home marker”? If so where is it? It is easier to find it if you have been exiled for long periods – but I doubt that’s a mandatory. The comment box’s is patience is not eternal so don’t be shy.