Thursday, February 21, 2008

Of no fixed address

Whenever filling up any form, I come across the usual entry: Permanent Address. I always hesitate a bit before filling up this entry……which address should I provide? The address of my ancestral home in my native city….which I haven’t visited in many years? Or the address of my parent’s retirement home bought couple of years back, where I’ll perhaps never live? Do I really have a place to call my permanent address?

Ever since I remember, I’ve never lived in a single place for a long time. When I was a child, my dad’s job with a nationalized bank and consequent transfers ensured that my family kept moving from one place to another at short intervals. If it was not from one town to another, then it was from one rented accommodation to another.

When I grew up and finished school, I moved to another city and state to join university. After graduating, I enrolled for my PG in an institute in yet another city and state. Then I started working and continued moving from job to job and from city to city.

My address changes every year…at times every few months. I don’t know whether I’d ever be able to stay put in a single place long enough to call it my permanent address. No, buying my own home is not a solution…or rather is an out-of-reach solution. Settling down in a relationship isn’t a solution either…there is no guarantee these days that relationship will last or the partner himself will not be moving frequently, for work or any other reason.

Do I hate moving so frequently? Do I yearn for stability now? Not really… Maybe I’ve become used to it. At some point of time it stopped being an inconvenience and turned into a habit instead. That might explain why I like to visit far-flung places every year on holidays, why I fidget and can’t sit still in a place far too long.

So the problem of permanent address remains…..

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