Sometimes the strangest things will make me feel homesick. Last night, I was just tucking myself into bed and I heard the sound of a dog’s bark float up through the narrow space of air between the high rise buildings, through my now opened windows (Spring is definitely here), and into my ears. And while there are, despite the tiny apartments of Hong Kong, still lots of dog owners, and it is not unusual at all to see dogs, this sound suddenly transported me back home to the place where I grew up, in one of the boroughs of NYC, where we, and a few of our neighbors, had dogs who often stayed out in their backyards.
The sound of a dog barking, or even a few dogs barking back and forth to each other, was a sound I grew up with in my family home (not a sound I was too accustomed to when I was living in Chelsea, Manhattan), though I suppose I might hear more dog barking if I were out in Sai Kung or Tai Po (though, even way there, it would depend exactly where I was staying, as there are just about no places in Hong Kong free of large high rise complexes). But since it had been so long since I’ve heard that familiar sound from the comforts of my own bed at night, that single instance last night just made me feel a funny warmth with the memory of “home.”