I want to start my first WEEKLY KICK with a topic that should resonate with all us immigrants living in Shanghai N O S T A L G I A. Feelings of bittersweet longing for the country we were born and lived in for most of our lives creep up on us. A place in our minds that remains subconscious until a smell, a sensation, or perhaps a piece of music - shakes them out to reveal a flood of memories.
In my case it was a book. I have been reading Isabel Allende's "My invented Country" in which she takes the reader on a journey through the collective memories of her native country, Chile, which also happens to be my homeland.
I love her definition of Nostalgia as a pastiche of real memories and half imagined stories built up over time. She sees nostalgia as an inspirational place where all creatives should go to.
So I am "mind traveling" back to Chile, a country so long and remote it almost falls off the map. And I am gathering the bits and pieces of my past, both new and old randomly exactly how memory works. Perhaps they will help me construct a partial imaginary of my home.