An old acquaintance emailed me, and after the pleasantries, a mini-nostalgia trip, and the compliment of saying she enjoyed reading my blogposts, she abruptly applied the brakes in mid-sentence, when she said "I didn't think you would like blogging on many places, things to do and sites to visit, your Facebook persona led me to think you were much more comfortable being a homebody."
(Courtesy of livingroomdesignidea.com)
It got me to thinking what I do post on my Wall.
Her observation is actually with merit, as I find that many of what I publicly post (for my "Friends" to see, anyway) are the recipes Arthur cooks up with me as "taste tester", and how we always enjoyed "stay-cations" long before it became some kind of online and marketing buzzword. (And, as usual, advertisers have found a way to co-opt it to their advantage, calling resort stays as "stay-cations". Reminds me of the time coffee was advertised as a "health drink".)
And admittedly, I always, always look forward to lying in our own bed after a lengthy stay elsewhere, and even though some places have sleeping arrangements that are worthy of gods, nothing can compare with the simple joy of placing your head in your slightly deformed pillow on a bed that "knows" your body contour intimately.
(Courtesy of interiorarcade.com)
Here, then, are some reasons why I find staying at home can often be a far superior experience than anything else offered outside of it, no matter how attractive and enticing.
(1) Gone With The Wind.
And by that, I mean the gassy fumes you exhume after a heavy meal, and just preceding a run to the bathroom to do the colloquial "No. 2". Home means never having to apologize for being human - part of which involves us farting, picking at various orifices for, uh, gunk, conveniently "forgetting" to fix your hair. In short, the actions that all of us do but would be mortified if it were exposed in a public setting, you would - pun intended - feel at home doing it, as these things are just as natural as breathing.
(2) Play A Love Game
I really, really loathe Public Displays of Affection, especially the torrid variety. As has often been noted, humans are the only creatures that seek privacy in lovemaking. (Exhibitionists and adult film stars, you are hereby excused from this generalization.) So when I see couples doing anything remotely resembling lovemaking in public, I get nauseous being forced to witness a peep show I don't recall paying for. (Believe me, the mental trauma is too hideously high a cost.)
Keep it in your pants, do it at home, don't perform in public.
(Courtesy of michaelnus.com)
(3) Far And Away
That's the one place our car won't be going. It will be parked, in a shaded, secured area (that is what we pay for), it will not be using up gas (Have you seen gas prices lately? Whoaa!!), we don't have to stress ourselves looking for a parking slot, we do not get tied up in gnarly traffic, and we won't deal with idiotic drivers who seem to think that motorcycles are meant to weave beside side mirrors, pedestrians who get down in the middle of the road and cross without looking, luxury cars (always an SUV) with policemen escorting them sans the wang-wang (but with blinkers and lights on, and the same cocky "law enforcers" angrily waving for people to get out of the way, or drivers who think texting and driving at the same time is a multi-tasking act that should be emulated by children.
We save gas, mileage is intact, zero chance of a car accident.
The car gets a vacation. I talked to him, he'd like more days like that.
(4) And The Living Is Easy
Home is a place where the vibe is naturally relaxed. By definition, it is your literal sanctuary from the stresses one encounters with any form of contact with other humans in the outside world. You can lay around, read a book (lately, my e-reader) from whatever position on the couch or bed (believe me, I've explored a number of them), and not really care if you can't find the remote, as the trashy reality show onscreen is numbing your neurons to the point of alcohol-induced stupor.
(5) Close To You
I've heard so many advice columnists saying how important it is to "jazz things up", take a night out on the town, make a grand romantic date where you have to wear clothes you'll only use twice in your lifetime at best, all in the service of keeping the spark alive in your relationship.
While those are certainly appreciated, I find that it is in the mundaneness of everyday life that you can actually gauge your compatibility the best: I can't tell you how many times washing the dishes has lead to an impromptu sing-along in our home, and why the appearance of a cockroach always elicits laughter from Arthur. (I find them hideously disgusting. Seriously. You want me to freak out in a way that would make Roseanne Barr blush? Just show me a cockroach.)
When there really isn't anything "exciting" to do or go to, is that person beside you the one you can stand being with? Or are you using these "social events" to mask the terrible truth that you would rather be anywhere else than trapped at home with the person you are supposed to be the most initmate with? (And I don't mean sex. Well, for the most part.)
(6) The Ugly Truth
You can talk freely about everything and everyone when you're at your own fort. The things that you have to edit saying because you still want to salvage a friendship, the nasty thought you keep to yourself about your co-worker. All of these are given free rein and room to come to life - and gossip about - when you're at home, whether you chat with a friend online, make a telebabad call (how 80's), or make snide remarks for you and your spouse to laugh about. A place to let your guard down, another reason why staying in is more fun.
In the Philippines, or anywhere else.
(7) Sweet Dreams Are Made Of These
A chance to catch up on much needed sleep, in surroundings and furniture that have been with you longer than you care to count. I have not checked the official statistics, but if our own lives are to be the gauge, I am confident that people are sleeping less and less these days, and the time you spend preparing for an "event" until you come back home could be better utilized in nocturnal pursuits.
I remember medical advice stating that we need 8 hours of sleep daily to function effectively. No wonder it's so hard to get things completely well done. I don't recall being able to sleep more than 8 hours straight in recent memory - until this Holy Week, and we were at home.
I slept close to that, or closer than I've ever been: 7 hours. Dang. That was a good snooze.
(8) I'm Sexy, And I Know It
You could go au naturelle, without the accompanying "what the hell gave her the right to strip here" stares in a sauna or nudist camp, or the possibility of an indecent conduct charge from a law officer. (Of course, those with kids have to be more prudent about this, as children have a knack for showing up where they're not wanted.)
And you'd have to keep the blinds closed.
Hands down, given a choice, I would prefer to stay home. Which is vastly different from a house. I thought I'd make that distinction patently clear: Just because your house is a picture perfect, Architectural Digest cover-worthy creation does not make it a home.
So, yes, I am a homebody. Who likes to go out occasionally. So when I rave about a place or anything else, it must be something worth leaving the comforts of home for.