We've had a week from heaven together and when I go back to New York, he'll be my hardest goodbye. When I went away to college, the biggest homesickness-related adjustment was this business of living without animals. With the family and friends I missed, there were phone calls, emails, cards, and letters; with the animals, all channels of meaningful communication were sharply cut off.
Someone once told me that she won't officially feel like an adult until she owns a house. I (an apartment renter) have felt like an adult for many moons, but has that feeling been official? Unofficial adulthood is intense; an official version sounds like it could reap more returns. I won't officially feel like an adult until I'm finally ready to adopt a dog or cat of my own. I was born for the role of mollycoddling primary pet caretaker.
I'll take the house(s) too - the Catskills house, the Bermuda house. Those could be fun investments. But first comes the four-legged fur.