A new found love for an old friend. I seem to have grown fonder of you with each passing day. The more miles between us only strengthens my need for you. Your strong back bone of green that holds us together. The melody of your voice that croons the soft music of the mountains. The pride you take in your people.
Alaw. My name is simple to say, and yet nobody can say it like you. A-law, Allow, Alan. The correction is repeated. “It means melody,” I say, “It’s ok, everyone gets it wrong the first time around, I’m used to it.” They smile awkwardly in return.
The beats are altered here, harsher, stronger, empowering. But I miss the familiar tilt of your words, open and welcoming. It is different here. More different than I could imagine. The pace of the pavement, the stride of life is slower. I seem to have more time to think, think of you. Think of what we had. Everything will have changed once I tread on your soil. And then what will be familiar to me in this big world, will be no longer. My horizons broadened, thoughts expanded. But I will return to the familiar hold of your presence, where the land meets the sea, and the heart of the country beats with the rain, and I will listen.
Once I am back, protected in the shade of the mountains, I promise to appreciate you. I will be sure to proclaim my affection for you every day. And no matter the distance, no matter the time and change, you will always be my home. Some may call it nationalism, but my dear, I call it love.