December 17, 2009

A house or a home?

When my old man was still alive, I asked him to come to stay with me every now and then. Most of the time he declines the offer and even when he agrees to come to stay with me, it will only be for a day or so and then he wants to go home. Not that he don’t like me, it just that he is most happy to be at his small little flat which he called home. Even though my siblings and I can afford better houses and wanted him to come stay with us, he said to us … “This is your house but it is not my home”. And he will quote a popular Cantonese saying “loong chorng putt kup kau tau”. It basically means that you can give him the dragon’s (emperor’s) bed but it is no match to his dog's kennel. To my old man, it is not about the house, it is all about the home.

Those who are old enough will probably remember “SINGER”, a very popular household brand many years ago. If you do, I am sure you will also remember its tagline and its advertising jingle. I can still sing out loud the popular jingle …“SINGER, has a way to make your house a home”. It is a simple phrase but have a very strong meaning about house and home. And this is what I want to talk about here …what is a house and what is a home?

A house is bought, a home is made. A house is built by the hands, a home is built by the heart. A house is made of walls and beams, a home is made with love and dreams. A house is where you stay, a home is where you live. A house is your body, a home is your soul. And strangely, we leave our house to look for our needs, only to return home to find it.

I have a house. You can say I have a very nice house. But that is exactly what it is … a house. It is a home? Yes, it is my home and after so many years, it is still in the making. You know what? It will take my lifetime to do it. By the words of SINGER’s popular tagline, I am always making my house a home. I am doing it bit by bit, day by day because like my old man, I love to go home. I feel most happy to be at my home.

For the rich it can be a multi-storeyed bungalow or a luxury condominium. For others, it may be a cheap low-cost apartment. The question is …“Is it an expensive house you bought to show off or is it a home that you have made for you and your loved ones?

So whatever it is, a big luxurious bungalow or a small low-cost apartment, ask yourself this, when you step into your house, do you find a home?



The trekker, agnes said...

home is where seed of equilibrium nestle, home provides many seats that make you warm in the heart, home is where you feel belong to, home is where love is.