Something I think about fairly regularly in my new home is the idea of “fitting in” and what that even means. It’s not something I can profess to be particularly good at, since from a very early age I rejected the idea of having a peer group that consisted of, well, other children. Not that I didn’t like other children. I liked some of them just fine. But I thought I was an alien, and since none of them appeared to be other aliens disguised as children, they weren’t my peer group.
Now I really am an alien — sadly, not the kind I dreamed of being as a kid — and my delusions of extraterrestrial grandeur have mostly abated. My focus has turned to hanging out without sticking out. But I’m a newbie here, and I talk funny and forget where things are and which way to look before crossing the street, and so I stick out.
At the same time, I feel more at home here than I have anywhere I’ve ever lived. If sticking out is the price I have to pay for that, I will pay it.
This is a snap of a sentiment I thought I wanted to express, but I don’t feel like that anymore today. I feel more like The Observer, but I didn’t find a bald, suit-wearing alien in time. And I was unwilling to shave my head.