I know I'm almost home when...

Ravenel Bridge, Charleston, SC
Ravenel Bridge, Charleston, SC

Traveling back from Fripp Island this weekend, I exited Highway 21 onto Highway 17 North to Charleston. And somewhere around there (you know what I'm talking about?) there's a stretch of marshland that hugs both sides of the rural highway and extends almost as far as I can see. Each time I drive across that piece of road, I feel like I'm crossing some imaginary threshold. It tells me I'm almost home. I get the same feeling on I-26 East, when I pass Exit 199.

And when I'm on the Ravenel Bridge.

And I felt it years ago, when I was a student at the University of South Carolina, and I crossed the Congraree River and entered Blossom Street.

And when I lived in Portland, Oregon, and the Burnside Bridge escorted me to the west side of town. Portland never felt quite like home, but something about driving across the Willamette River was familiar to me. And that familiarity provided a sense of comfort.

When you're traveling, do you cross thresholds like these? When and where do you feel the shift?