As my world has suddenly shifted from cabin in the woods to city living, I’ve been thinking a lot about place—how we are the products of our environments and our environments are a product of us, how seemingly disparate, trivial things can get woven into our identities, and how it seems impossible to circumvent all this. Maybe deep meditation is the antidote. This glum feeling lately seems to stem from not experiencing the things that remind me of who I am: nature, animals, my home and the art inside it, my books, my guitar, nearby friends. They were all reflections of me and my way of understanding myself and my place in the world, and they’re gone, if only temporarily. I feel like an island. And it’s a bit depressing to be an island.