I’m sitting at a new table in a new kitchen. (A small miracle in itself–to fit it through my new door I had to forcibly detach its new legs from its new top with my new flathead screwdriver.)
A new cat is trying to reach my keyboard with its nose. Conversations of restaurant-goers drift through my new open window framed in new red curtains. My new cat jumps down from my lap to lap some new water from its new bowl.
Sometimes the newness is overwhelming. Mostly, though, I’m carried away by what’s happening now, unable to consider past or future. Or maybe I don’t want either to catch up.
Like all new things, New York took some breaking in. It’s taking some breaking in still. Mild discomfort lingers, but I’ve reached the point at which I no longer need to fear blisters and bleeding.
But it’s all happening at an overwhelming pace. So here is a post about me trying to make sense of my life–of the things that have changed. I’m taking inventory of the new.
1. New digs
My ‘hood is the best. I live in Soho, which is in south-central Manhattan. My apartment is a 10-minute walk to Washington Square Park and a 20-minute walk to my classes in the j-school. It’s a 26-minute ride on the C train to Fort Greene, Brooklyn. It’s a 45-minute subway ride to 110th street.
I live above a restaurant that serves good coffee and better wine. On the other side is a shop that sells salvaged furniture and art. An old man with a white beard runs the shop. I like him because he owns a long-haired cat, and because he is reading “The Book Thief,” but hides the book if a customer approaches.
There’s a bodega on the corner run by an Asian woman and her husband. She’s curt and quick to calculate the change, but smiled at me when I told her I live alone. I complimented her apron with the teddy bears on it.
Every day I walk past a new coffee shop or book store or cafe I want to visit. I could get used to this whole ‘never getting bored’ thing.
2. New job
Levo League’s mission is to promote women in the working world. Its employees (all women who work with drive and passion and dress very chicly) accomplish this by posting constructive site content, offering job matching services, and hosting live events. The office is in Union Square overlooking the park. Everything is white and fresh mod and full of possibility.
I’m in charge of posting Levo’s partner content, coming up with posts of my own, and providing input for all things editorial. There are meetings and g-chats and company emails and stats and Luna bars and a Keurig and visiting dogs, sometimes. Working for a startup is the most exciting, energetic thing I’ve ever done. You should all try it.
3. New feline
We all saw this coming. Her name (after an agonizing day of brainstorming which produced 27 total options) is Eve. She is eight months old and black as my soul with green eyes. She had a cold and sneezed a lot, so I took her on the subway to see the vet. Now, she’s better.
She likes to do whatever I am doing, which means I don’t get anything done. Right now she’s surprisingly well behaved. She’s keeping my right thigh warm while I type. She just moved–she knows I’m talking about her.
4. New love
Believe it or not, I know how it feels to be in love. The requited kind, I mean. (But of course I know what the other kind feels like, too.) The giddiness, the inexplicable grin that you try to suppress, the feeling that every song speaks to you, that you might just float off the sidewalk.
I love New York, and it loves me back.
Walking down University Avenue to the Levo offices a few mornings ago, it hit me. Since childhood I’ve fantasized about living and working in New York. Now, I’m doing it. I am living my childhood dreams. And it feels right.