While sitting on the airplane yesterday, it struck me as sad that there would be no one waiting to pick me up from the airport. I had no one to depend on, but it’s not like I needed someone. I was perfectly capable of getting to my apartment by myself (and I did).

That’s not the case when I go home. In Vegas, my dad’s and my routine is solid. I text when I land. I call when I finally have my checked bag. I walk to passenger pickup. He pulls up, my suitcase and I get in. Then we usually go to In ‘N Out next to UNLV, because he’s well aware that I think no burger on this coast can compare.

It’s not as predictable when I fly into Reno. Different people pick me up in different cars. I stay in different apartments and eat in different restaurants. But last Thursday, when I wasn’t sure if Dana was awake yet, I called up Adam. Thirty minutes later, he pulled up in his new car that feels so old and we spent the next few hours wandering around parts of the city that changed while I was away.

Had he not come to get me, someone else would have eventually. That’s just a fact. Perhaps that won’t always be the case as we get older and more people move away, but for now, it’s true.

I know D.C. is different. This isn’t the West, where a vehicle is a necessity to life. For every friend who has a car out here, I have many more who don’t.

But despite knowing that, when I was on that plane yesterday, I felt like a place won’t ever be home unless there’s someone waiting to pick me up from the airport.