I went to an Open House for a $2.4 million Cambridge property near Harvard University. The back page of the 10-page brochure that the agents handed out to visitors featured a quote from T.S. Eliot “Home is Where One Starts From.”
When I walked in to the house wearing the abaya, I could hear everyone, except the listing real estate agent, thinking: ”Well, there goes the neighborhood” and “would she actually live here or is she looking to for investment property?” “What are the neighbors going to think about this?” “Why would she need so many bedrooms?” There were six, and more possible bedrooms. Lots of families were there with handfuls of young blondish children running up and down the steps. I commented to the lightly-floating-near me agent that the price was rather low. “Well, that’s the point,” she answered. I was not sure if her answer meant ‘sell quick” or ‘bidding war.’ She pushed the sign-in book into my hand and a pen. “So we can contact you later,” she said.
No one talked to me after that, and I noticed the agents weren’t talking to anyone. Just sitting on the sofa in the front room watching people come and go. It was a gawker Open House event, which means they were looking to start a bidding war. I wonder if the agent will contact me.
Now back to the indwelling essence. Home. Where we feel safe. On Day 5 I am feeling safe in the abaya. As if I have an extra layer of protection draped over my shoulder. A shield. A physical barrier to protect me from having to interact, or shield me from more than the obvious assumption an outsider might make about me–which would probably be a wrong one. I guess. It is easy for me to fall into the outsider mentality no matter where I am, so wearing an abaya makes it that much more easy and comfortable.
When I got home, I looked up the T.S. Eliot quote, because I thought the capitalization was so odd. Only the verb ‘is’ is lower case and every other word in the phrase is capitalized. A quick internet search brought up a computer game, “Home is Where One Starts From.” It is a a short first person, non-linear exploration game told by the future self of a reflective narrator. HMMM. I wondered if the real estate agents did this on purpose or by error. Nonetheless. a clever syncronicity for the day.
On Day 5 the garment has become like a structure of consciousness that preserved the unity of what I felt inside and the reflection of the outer world.t Where we live? A house? A garment? A body?
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