I had been so busy with work these past few weeks. It was lonely here in the big city. I had just recently moved here because of the promotion I got. I worked on Wall Street in one of those typical skyscrapers you think of when you think of New York City. I liked my job, it was everything a 32-year-old would want. It paid well, and I was happy with it.
The only downside of working in the Big Apple was being away from my family. My wife and two kids lived in Georgia. That’s where I lived before the big promotion. It was a lot quieter, and life was a lot simpler. Our home was located in a small town called Helen where everyone knew each other. The homes were very small and quaint.
With the holidays around the corner, all I could think about was how warm and cozy Helen was during this time. Don’t get me wrong, NYC was also a sight to see. The streets were always bustling with people, and holiday cheer was everywhere. The famous Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and iconic Rockefeller Center were a thrill. Yes, there were Christmas lights and decorations everywhere. However, it wasn’t the same as Helen.
It was December 15, and I had just gotten out of the office. It was snowing like crazy. I waved my hand for a cab. Within a few seconds, one pulled up from the left of me. I got in and quickly shut the door. “Where to?” asked the driver. I gave him an address, and we were off.
About 15 minutes later, I was dropped off at the front of my apartment. I heard muffled voices coming from other rooms in my hallway. My keys rattled in my hand as I searched to find the right one that opened my door. Soon I got inside, turned the light on, and dropped my coat across the couch and sat down. I took a deep breath. I watched the snow pile up further at the corner of my window.
It was dark and cold.
I closed my eyes and imagined back home. Warm smiles and hugs from family and soaking in the smell of food. After a few minutes, I got up and poured myself a drink. I sat back down in the same spot and kept on reminiscing.
My apartment was great, don’t get me wrong. It had an amazing view of the city skyline. I could see all of the taxis, bikes, buses, cars and people from here. They seemed so small and far removed from where I watched them. Buildings lit up across from where I was. It was a sight to see. However, it just wasn’t home.
A week passed; it was December 22. I got word from the boss that I’d be getting time off for the holiday. I would have a week to myself.
I was filled with joy when I got the news. This meant I could go visit my family in Helen. I would surprise them. They hadn’t seen me since September. It was a disappointment to miss Thanksgiving with them.
I booked my flight to Georgia as soon as I could. I would be leaving on December 24 to get in during midday. I would get to spend Christmas Eve with my family!
Two days later, all of my bags were packed and I got on the plane. I watched the snow fall from the sky through the window. Luckily, the flight was not delayed.
As soon as I arrived in Georgia, I called for a cab to take me home. As the driver pulled up, a large smile came across my face. I was going home.
My cab took about 30 minutes to take me to Helen. When we arrived, I paid and tipped the driver. It was exactly how I remembered it to be during December. White lights hung from all of the houses, and a tall Christmas tree sat in the middle of the town center.
The driver dropped me off in front of my house. It was cold as hell outside, yet I felt my heart melt. I was filled with joy to be home. I could hug my wife and kids and see the smiles on their faces. I walked up the driveway and thought to myself, there’s no place like home.