Saturday, November 28, 2009

Moving on

I literally brought 2 suitcases with me when I moved, and still haven't brought the majority of my belongings...

So here I sit, surrounded by a moat belongings in my parent's home. I'm sorting what I need to bring back to the city, what I'm giving to goodwill, what I'm bringing to my brother's for storage, and which items of clothing will also double for a noose in case moving really gets to me. (Okay, I probably shouldn't make suicide jokes here - I'm using a little poetic license. Plus, aren't most writers a tad suicidal anyway? Just pretending to fit that mold).

Lesson #10: Moving should resemble removing a band aid if at all possible - do it as quickly, and seamlessly, as possible. In particular, I mean moving one's belongings. I have drawn this process out over literally a few months, and it's been more painful than it should be. My advice would be to just take care of it all at once - just hire movers, storage space if necessary, and so on.

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, though, I'm just happy that I have family and friends to help with the enormous amount of work that moving entails! Honestly, I would be utterly lost without my mom's insane knowledge of storage, moving, etc. Plus she made me a blanket with old t-shirts from age 4 to 24 (favorite shirt being the "We Love Recycling - 1989," my parent must have known that I would be a tree hugger). It's great. Plus it got rid of like 30 t-shirts that I would have to otherwise sort through and store, so it's also been the saving grace of my sanity.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

a Modern Day Belle

(FYI, I mean the Disney Belle, not a southern belle.)

I realize that I sometimes walk around carrying a book. Okay, not just carrying...actually reading a book. I also realize that having my nose in a book isn't a smart idea, but sometimes I just.can't.stop.READING a page (or few). I recall doing this a lot in Ann Arbor, but I didn't really need to worry about getting lost or running into rude New Yorkers. For some reason the fact that it's probably the nerdiest thing one could do has never bothered me.

Another kind of bad habit I've fallen prey to is never having a fully charged cell phone. Because what I've noticed is that it tends to die at the most important times. Like when I'm trying to meet a friend (which was the case tonight) or when walking home at 3am, at which point it'd be good to have the "phone a friend" lifeline (wow, a 'who wants to be a millionaire' reference? o rly?).

Lesson #9 in moving to a big city: Always have a fully charged cell phone on you. Or walkie talkie. Or laptop, if you must. Just make sure if you need to be in contact with someone, or need to pull up a map, need to know the closest pizza place, etc, you can figure it out. You won't have to ask randoms on the street or rely on your gut instinct (which is wrong a noticeable amount of the time). While I love feeling disconnected from technology at times (funny, I know, that I'm writing that in a blog.), it's probably best to at least have access to it when necessary.

But then again, people survived for generations without cell phones. Though also didn't have libraries, CNN, diet Coke, and other necessities.

Friday, November 20, 2009

If you like Piña Coladas....

I do enjoy getting caught in the rain from time to time, but prefer to not be caught sans umbrella.

Lesson #8: Prepare for anything. Just buy a big bag and before leaving each day, make sure to prepare for any type of weather/event/whim. 

I'm not advocating bringing heels with you in case you find yourself needing to look fancy (well, unless it's the weekend. Then I might advise this), but more of your daily necessities. For instance, I often bring a snack with me because I don't know if I'll be hungry at some point, and a hungry me = an unhappy me. Plus it is sometimes hard to find vegan food around, though arguably easier here than anywhere in the country.

Other things that would come in handy to carry on a daily basis:

Book (obviously good for commutes. Or if you're eating alone and don't want to look really alone or something.)
Floss (I don't actually carry this, but I should. Days have been ruined by the agonizing feeling of something caught between teeth.)
Bandaids, in case you get blisters while walking. Or in case you get bloody nipples (wait, maybe that's just for marathon runners? hmmmm. Happy that I've never experienced this.)
Snack, umbrella, sweater (the necessities)

The list could go on and on, but just bring more than you think you'd want. Then in case you can't make rent, you'll have lots of cool things to do to pass the time.

Friday, November 13, 2009

20something in a Candy Store

Though I recently wrote a post about not needing less sleep than one thinks (which I still consider to be true, as does this guy), I also am realizing that it's okay, and good, to take a break from the city madness. Maybe this is my small town roots pulling me down to earth, but I seriously wonder at times how people stay sane here without actively pursuing sanity.

I honestly feel like I'm in a gigantic candy store at times, full of delicious vegan goodies.

(side note: I know some claim that Vegas is an adult playground, but I disagree - New York is much more so. Playgrounds are full of more than tourists, strippers, and drunk college students (at least where I'm from.). Playgrounds have kids from diverse backgrounds, and they aren't always such a fun place. Instead of drinking, lots of kids are on ADHD meds, and I think many New Yorkers should be (though they probably drink a lot too. Oh well). Kids can be cruel, and so can adults. But playgrounds are also a place where you're on the fast track to learning who you are. That, and let's be honest - men still flirt in many of the same ways they did at 7 years old.)

Most nights, I don't get home until fairly late... almost as if I'd feel guilty to just have a simple, relaxing evening. Well, it's safe to say that the city will go on without any individual and will provide ample opportunities to indulge one's passions another day. Besides, it's pretty tough to really enjoy life/the city/yourself if you're too busy to recognize or appreciat it.

Lesson #7: You don't need to figure out everything at once, or even soon after moving. Allow yourself some precious "me" ("you," to me) time every now and then. Of course, this goes for just about everyone, everywhere, but it's easy to get caught up in the constant activities - my hedonistic self just wants to take advantage of what the city has to offer. Therefore, it becomes easy to forget life's simple pleasures - one of those being the blissful times of doing nothing. Or reading for pleasure. Or actually catching up on sleep now and then (I never claimed to be consistent.)

Monday, November 9, 2009

One, Two, Three Strikes You're Out..

Face it - no one really cares where your team allegiance lies when the Yankees with the World Series. You're in New York, and the Yankees/Mets/Rangers (and so on) run supreme.

Lesson #6 in moving to a big city: You can't just turn on or off your sports allegiances based on location. Just realize that you will be bitter if your hometown team doesn't do as well as your new town team. It takes time to develop feelings for these teams - and I've noticed many 'transplants' never do let go of their hometown team love. For me, I'll be happy if I'm able to retain my devotion and add a few NY sports teams to the mix as well. I will say, though - as much as I am bothered by bandwagon fans, it's hard to not get caught up at least a little in the excitement of an entire city celebrating a championship.

Plus, the poor Yankees have had such a rough century! They deserve a win more than any team. (please, please sense the sarcasm there. Normally I'd assume one would, but with a statement as bold as that, I've got to cover my pun intended.)

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Get Ready to Live to the EXTREME

There's not much moderation in this city. It honestly thrives on extremes.

Lesson #5 in moving to NYC (and this one is specific to NYC, not any city): Don't worry about fitting in and being "normal" (whatever that even means, I sometimes feel so detached that I don't even know). There's basically no such thing as 'normal' or 'ordinary' people here, and pretty sure people don't move to this city to "fit in."

This city draws people from every extreme walk of life, and it seems like people's lives get even more amazingly bizarre while living here. So I'm learning to just own it, be exactly who I am, and just grow in a city that could really care less (which is both a positive and negative, but that's another story...)