Monday, November 5, 2007

Is the DigiNomad Homeless?

MON 7 June 2010

On Monday the penetrating sound of my alarm clock pulled me back into the real physical world. Where am I is a question you always ask yourself on the moment you open your eyes or maybe even a split second before that. Usually you know the answer before you asked the question, it’s at home. But sometimes, the day after that beautiful holiday to a warm and inspiring country you get confused. Today it took me al least a few seconds to figure out it was my own cosy bed I woke up in. It was the sound of the Saint Micheals (cathedral in Brussels) that tele-ported me back to Brussels.
So now I was back in place again it was time to get up. With a rather smooth movement swung my body in an upright position and touched the floor with my feet for the first time this day. This earthly contact and my self reflecting, not so charming, image in the mirror made my place in the world seem irrelevant. But in the afternoon I had a meeting at the headquarters about some sponsorship for a huge exhibition in New York next year. So I put on my clothes and slipped into my shoes suddenly remembering the running exercise of yesterday represented by a growing blister. I looked around the room, the only room my and my girlfriends place had. After adopting our nomadic lifestyle we decided to move to a smaller apartment while we didn’t need to live in the space that much. But while we loved the city centre of Brussels because it held so many shared memories we looked for a place right in the heart of the city. I moved here 6 years ago after growing up and studying in Amsterdam to work for the EU. I met my girlfriend and moved in with here after one year. So I can tell I feel at home in this city, although my heimat still is Amsterdam. Because of the little space we have I like to start my days in a quiet café. Something I do everywhere also when I am traveling. This morning I ended up in my favorite café ‘Het warm water’ specialized in day welcoming breakfasts. And always some fresh new papers and not unimportant a WIFI connection.
While walking to the EU quarter I saw a homeless man hiding under a big three trying to create some shelter for himself. I wondered if he despite the lacking of a physical home still felt at home in the same city I felt at home. When I was thinking this and therefore watched in his eyes he spit right next to my leather shoes, I had recently polished, saying: ‘How dare you walking through ‘my city’ with those absurdly expensive shoes made of harmless cows’. I smiled and thought, yes he feels at home, but kept my change from breakfast in my pocket.

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