Today I write because I'm homesick--not homesick for the little town I grew up in but homesick for Thailand. I've started an assignment for an English course I'm taking called, "Creative Non-Fiction." My writing prompt is to write a story about being ambushed by a smell. Think about it. This happens to all of us--you enter a room filled with a certain smell and it takes you back to a place in time. Well, the smell I am writing about is typical of a TCA because it is the smell of shrimp paste wafting into our house from the neighbour's house almost every morning like clockwork. The smell assaulted me with memories that occurred in that house for 7 years of our lives as a family--especially morning memories when the smell was pungent in the air. Mostly mornings of trying to get the kids ready for school--mornings of loud arguments with my daughter who hated mornings, mornings of hunting for school uniforms, whether skirts or pants or even sports teams, mornings of trying to get my son to eat a little something before heading out the door.
There were also happy memories mixed with the sad ones. MANY happy memories. Our dog Rosie would almost always make us smile in the morning as she attempted to attack our cat, who wanted nothing to do with the dog. I think Rosie was a morning dog and our cat, Kitty, was a night cat. Two opposites clashing in the morning like my daughter and me. But also memories of eating together, celebrating birthdays and holidays together, playing games together. Lots of love and good times.
And so I am homesick, all from writing about the smell of shrimp paste. Nothing triggers the TCA syndrome like food. Sometime I'll have to write more about that. But not today. And now that I've written here, I feel joy instead of sadness and am thankful for the gift of memory. God is good.