Wanderlust, Home

We’re at the Burlington airport at four in the morning, in a rainy darkness, in that discombobulated airport way — where the everyone in town seems to be at the airport and then, outside, it’s just me and my teen driving through intersections amped down to blinking lights.

The way is familiar, but the night is so solid — and, honestly, I’m so tired — that we might be in upper New York state for all I know, and not Vermont, or maybe wandered farther away, all the down to mountainous Virginia.

The commuter traffic begins only as we’re nearly home. Then, with still an hour and a half before high school starts for the day, my daughter walks around the house, doing this, that, and finally stares at me on the couch. I close my lap and ask simply, Yes?

She looks out the window where the dawn is trying mightily hard to push away some of the dusk. Wanderlust, I see. There’s nothing more to say.

“There are days when I feel I am becoming good at what I do. And then I wonder, what does it mean to be good at this?”

— Francisco Cantú, The Line Becomes a River: Dispatches From the Border (elegantly written by a former border patrol officer — I can’t recommend this book enough)

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Photo by Molly B.

By Brett Ann Stanciu

Brett Ann Stanciu lives with her two daughters in Hardwick, Vermont. Her creative nonfiction book, Unstitched: My Journey to Understand Opioid Addiction and How People and Communities Can Heal, will be published by Steerforth Press in September 2021. Her novel about rural life in Vermont, Hidden View, was published in 2015.

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