Where Are You From?

When I am out of California and am asked where am I from, I usually say, “Saratoga.” Sometimes I say Silicon Valley. When on the internet, it is easy to find the city. Most people are satisfied when I say we live 60 miles south of San Francisco.

A Little Story:

When I placed my father with Alzheimer's at the Mission Skilled Nursing Facility in Santa Clara, I required his roommate be a "live wire." I actually interviewed the roommates in advance, as I felt an older person with a lot of personality would be very good for my father, rather than a person who lied in bed and slept all day.

It was an easy choice to make. The person I chose was eighty-four years old. He was mobile, talkative, outgoing, and most of all, not confined to a wheel chair. He smiled a lot. He was friendly. He liked to wear a hat tilted on his head. He was very glad to meet me. One of the first questions I remeber asking him was, "Where are you from?"

"I'm from Portsmouth, New Hampshire."

"Oh, a New Englander, huh?" I responded. "I bet you don't miss the weather."

"Not at all." I remember him saying. "New Hampshire is a great place to be from."

He spoke about it for ten minutes or longer. During the course of the conversation, he told me he moved to Santa Clara and that's why he chose this facility, because he had many friends living nearby.

"Oh, how long have you lived in Santa Clara?" I asked.

"Eighty-three years," he answered.

Here is a fellow who moved to Santa Clara eighty-three years ago who, I found out in the course of our conversation, had never been back to New Hampshire and left when he was less than a year old. But he still considers himself to be from New Hampshire.

This is where I have lived since I was born: