“The fact is, whether you’re a rock star or whether you’re a welder in a shipyard, or a tribesman in the upper Amazon, or the queen of England, at the end of the day, we’re all in the same boat.” -Sting
When I was in Elementary School our music class put on a performance of Sloop John B (the Kingston version, I think). I had really no clue what that song is about, and even now I wonder. But it seems like someone is giving up– “send for the captain ashore…let me go home” and “I feel so broke up. I want to go home.” The original Bahamian folksong turned into a hit for the Kingston Trio and eventually the Beach Boys….why? Why do people enjoy listening to a song about giving up and going home? There are countless songs about going home. From “My Town” to “The House that Built Me” to one of my favorites, “Carolina.”
Home is a connection to the past. It feels safe. David Brooks wrote a beautiful piece about how important it is to ground future vision in historical consciousness, and he reflects on a beautiful TED talk where Sting talks about the importance his home and his past played in getting him back on musical course. He connects not only with his own past, but the collective past of his neighbors. He talked about how your best work isn’t always about you…it’s about someone else. And that’s what home is. It’s not just about you. It’s about relationships. Family. Community. Others. I love that I can be home for the summer. I’m with my kids, and I’m recalibrating.