The smell of summer-heated tatami makes me feel like I've been away longer that I actually have. The way the scent envelopes me the moment I open the door, the particular fragrance of the rooms I inhabit. I've missed the smell of my home. It doesn't seem like it could possibly be so far away from my friends and family in my other home, the home in the States, the one that smells of earthy basement and breakfast bacon with a side of pet dander. But those smells don't feel like they belong to me anymore. I haven't been a part of those places and their odors. The tatami floor I'm laying on now to type this is somehow more mine, despite the fact it will be someone else's tatami floor this time next year. I'm going to savor it for now as mine, however, and fall asleep happily at home.
For those I didn't get to see, I'm sorry I missed you. For those I did see, I'm missing you even more. For those I'm seeing again soon, I've missed you.