This is only my third day in Nevada and I find myself saying, “back in my hometown.” It seems that almost everything triggers that phrase as if it’s always above the surface of my subconscious. My mind is telling me that this is not my home, but a temporary place for me to stay.
I caught myself quite a bit yesterday when I was on my way to get some shopping done and have caught myself more today. We were driving through some construction that seemed kind of out of place in such a growing city like this one. The construction only stretched about a few hundred feet and to me it didn’t seem like much of a nuisance compared to the construction that is always taking place back in my hometown (there it is again).
“Back in my hometown, there is construction at literally every corner.” Before I left, every bit of my commute was being worked on. The 10 St. bridge that leads into the heart of the city was demolished. A few miles down 10th street was blocked off so that you had to go through neighbors to go around. The bridge that you take to get into the small community of little Mexico was completely blocked and it was one of the two ways to get into the community. Reynolds street was once again under construction. It was worked on once every three years. The last time they worked on it, I was working my first job one of the fast food restaurant along that strip. It’s a complete total mess. Everyone moans and groans, “Can I not go through the city without hitting construction.” Everyone knows the answer.
“Back in my hometown, the Walmart doesn’t look like this.” The Walmart here in Nevada was very intimidating. The layout was completely different than I’m used to. When you walk into the Walmart back home, the food is on the left side and the home and pharmacy is on the right side. Here it is completely opposite. It really threw me. I am used to the selection of cards being in the middle. The cards were placed akwardly off to the side near the books. The area I needed had the items like hair products and other hygienic products, but I didn’t even know where to go. Walking in there I felt out of place, like I didn’t belong. I didn’t know where I was going. Thankfully, I found what I needed, across from the cards. This is going to take some getting used to.
“Back in my hometown, the Target isn’t this big.” The second I walked into the Target, it just didn’t feel natural to me. There was a mini food court off the side with a Starbucks, Pizza Hut and another fast food chain I had never heard of. The Target food area was sectioned off away from it. On the other side of the store were two small kiosks. One sold sports apparel and the other sold cell phones and accessories. They people that ran them smiled at me as I walked by. I felt like I had the words “lost” tattooed to my forehead. The Target that I am used is fairly small. It was recently changed into a Super Target, meaning that they now would be offering a grocery selection, but it was still small. Even with the grocery addition.
“Back in my hometown, we have a Dillon’s, not a Smith’s.” Dillon’s such a popular place to shop back in my hometown because of the great selection of food, the prices and the fuel points. They still have all that here because Dillon’s and Smith’s are run by the same company. Same company, different name. I was informed that I would have to switch over my Dillon’s card to a Smith’s card in order for it to work. This place felt familiar enough for me because of how alike the two stores. The layout was different, which is going to take sometime to learn.
“Back in my hometown, the water doesn’t taste like this.” In Kansas, the water comes from the Kansas river, which is famous for never being full. The only time the river ever really rises is when there is a heavy rainfall or an excessive amount of snowfall. Both are equally likely. The river always looks depleted that you can see the sand bars as you drive past. I’m not sure exactly where the water comes from here, but I learned that the water is a luxary because of the shortage they have with water. People who live in houses are only allowed to water their lawn, maybe once a week. I couldn’t even explain how the water tastes. It just does not taste like something that I am used to, but I will give it a chance.
“Back in my hometown, we have humidity, not this dry heat.” The weather is whole different type of game here. Back in Kansas, the weather is best known for being unpredictable and times ridiculous. There will be a full week where you have every season. I’m not kidding! This year it was warm for a few hours, then it began to rain and then it snowed. It was crazy, but as people always say, “That’s Kansas.” During the summer the weather is hot and humid in Kansas. It’s sticky, unbearable, and exhausting. Walking outside you will be drenched in sweat. Here in Nevada it is hot, but not humid hot. I would describe it as a blow drier on hight heat being blown in your face. Air conditioners are definite necessity down here.
“Back in my hometown, the lizards were only seen out in the wilderness.” Walking to the car this morning, I noticed a lizard scattering across my feet. I nearly jumped two feet in the air. It’s not that I haven’t seen a lizard before, it’s that they aren’t just around like they are here. There are lizards back in Kansas, but they are found out in the wilderness. I remember when I used to go to a summer camp there were lizards everywhere. One that got a little to close to us that one of the people in my group were able to pick it up, it detached it’s tail. They screamed and dropped it. The lizard hobbled away unharmed.
I want to remove this phrase from my vocabulary. Not because I don’t want to remember Kansas, but because this is my home now. I need to tell myself that. Nevada is where I live now.