I got an e-mail the other day from a girl I knew in junior high school. We were in the same class for a couple years when we lived in St. Thomas. We were good friends for the short time we knew each other. Her house was so incredible it left a lasting impression on me. I used it for a setting in one of my short stories – The Devil in Me. I mentioned this when I wrote back to her, and she asked to read the story, so I sent her the link.

She sent me back a letter saying, ” I miss that island understanding. I still feel like a fish out of water here in the States. Though the last time I went to St. Thomas (’98 for 4 weeks on vacation) it didn’t feel like home anymore either. ”

It got me thinking. I always feel like a fish out of water, no matter where I am. I never felt like I belonged in St. Thomas (or I’d still be there) or in the States, or even in Europe. I love it here, and I am perfectly happy no matter where I am (Village Idiots ‘R Us) but I definitely feel like a fish out of water. I’m happy, and I feel content to be wherever I am, but no matter where I am, I have the impression that I’m a blue guppy in a bowl of goldfish.

I was about to write back to her that I was sure Everyone felt that way. But I’m suddenly not so sure. My neighbor brought my dogs back this morning (they got out of the garden and happily accompanied him on his rounds at the farm. He let them follow him, then brought them back. Auguste and Rusty were thrilled. A walk! A new friend!) I asked him if he ever thought of living anywhere else but here, and he looked at me like I was a…fish flopping on the bank of a pond, and shook his head. “Nope.”

So maybe my friend and I are the only ones who feel that we are fish out of water, no matter where we are. What about you? Do you sometimes feel like you’re a fish out of water? Or are you, like my neighbor, comfortable in your environment?

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