This Is What It Means to Say Phoenix, Arizona

          In Tuan’s chapter Attachment to Homeland, Tuan classifies the idea of home is considered important place in people’s livelihood. Home is like a center of the world that people feel free and comfortable to stay with, and it fills in with all valuable items and memories of individuals. The conception of attachment to homeland reveals the same ideas from the story, This Is What It Means to Say Phoenix, Arizona. Sherman Alexie tells that Victor, the main character, travels to the Phoenix, Arizona to handle the dead of his father caused by heart attack. In the purpose of this trip, Victor needs to collect the money from his father’s saving account and brings his father’s body back home as well. Thomas, friend of Victor, helps Victor with the financial support for the cost of airplane ticket and travels along with him. Thomas is not storyteller that nobody likes him so as Victor does, but he is important to Victor because they have a lovely childhood when they helped each other and had a lot fun together. While having this journey, Victor recognizes the characteristic of Thomas that either benefits him or bothers him in some case. He learns how to identify a person through the behavior and feeling in the reality. After they have done their journey, Thomas requests Victor to listen his story when he stands by and Victor accepts that like it never should happen in his own life.

        According to the story that Alexie has told, carrying the ashes of father is Victor’s purpose. It is what he believes his father should return to where he belongs to as home. Also, Thomas considers a dream is his home that he can listen to a story telling him the true of the reality. Tuan states that “A homeland has its landmarks, which may be features of high visibility and public significance. These visible signs serve to enhance a people’s sense of identity; they encourage awareness of and loyalty to place” (159). It reveals that a homeland can identify personal needs and the place where an individual belongs to. He/she figures out what is valuable and significant to him/her in particular place.

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