The Place Where I Belong: Sikkim

They say that the Home is where the Heart is and my heart for as long as I know has been in this small town of Sikkim. Whenever I am in the city or otherwise I can never stop gushing about this place. I can just go on and on about the beauty and the magnificence of this place. My friends often say, “You really love your hometown, don’t you? You never leave a single opportunity to back to the place.” According to them I really do not need to answer that, my smile says it all.

I have travelled to a few countries and lived in multiple cities in India; no place has ever touched my soul or given me that feeling of warmth, love and joy like Sikkim has. Also, no matter whichever part of the world I move to in the near future my heart will forever belong to this paradise.

Every time before I am about to leave this place I start getting chills down my nerves and begin to panic that I will be leaving soon. On the contrary, people keep telling me that, “Oh, you must be so excited to leave this place and go back to the city to live your independent life.” To which I think, yes, I am going back to the city to live my independent life and no, I am not excited to leave this place. No matter where I move, part of heart is always left behind.

Sikkim, Gangtok par se, is just not a place. It’s feelings and deep-rooted emotions. It’s peace and happiness. It’s where I was born, it’s where my parents live; it’s living in my parents old house, I’ve never loved my own places the way I love their place. It’s my mother’s food, her smile, her laughter. It’s the little fights with my brother; my friends. The tall majestic mountains, the clean air, the greenery, the smiling faces and the bond between the people. It’s my roots. It’s where I belong.

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For me, “Home” is the place where I feel in control and properly oriented in space and time; it is a predictable and secure place.  In the words of poet Robert Frost, “Home is the place that, when you have to go there, they have to take you in.”  In short, “home” is the primary connection between ME and the rest of the world.

It was only while living in the cities did I realise how I have really been influenced by my hometown; my thoughts, philosophies, choice of music and food, my beliefs. What living in the cities has given me is something priceless, it has taught me the value of home. The things that I once took for granted became extremely beautiful and precious. I can never look back at this place the way I did before.

It’s a funny thing about comin’ home. Looks the same, smells the same, feels the same. You’ll realise what’s changed is you. – The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

For people all around the world, home is the center of the world and a place that contrasts with the chaos elsewhere. When asked to draw a picture of “where you live,” children and adolescents worldwide invariably center their drawings around the home, making it the anchor for everything else.

The Tiwi of Bathurst Island (off the coast of Northern Australia) even believed that their island was the only habitable place in the world and all other places were thought of as the “land of the dead.” The Tiwi believed that sailors shipwrecked on their island were dead spirits, and they were killed because they did not belong in the land of the living.

As you reflect upon where your home is, ask yourself why this particular place out of the many places that you may have lived stands out as the one that feels like home. By doing so, you may also gain a deeper understanding of how you think about your self and your connection with the world at large.

Lastly, I would like to leave you all with this quote that perfectly describes my current state of mind –

“Where we love is home, home that our

feet may leave, but not our hearts.” 

Oliver Wendell Holmes

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