You know I’ve made my way back to my apartment in The West Village. But it must seem like I fell off the edge of a map marked ”Here Be Dragons.” Once you’ve written a travel blog, it seems strange to write about “my stationary life here in NYC.“
The rhythm of my days since I returned home…well there is no rhythm, really. Every day is a new day, and I’m trying to figure things out here: to remember the subway map, to run my calendar without double-booking or standing people up, how to be on time so I don’t miss my Long Island Railroad train by one minute. Yes, the LIRR does occasionally run on time, especially if you’re late!
I’ve been doing the slow-mosey in terms of moving back into my place. I had it painted in a single shade of Landlord White, then decided I wanted my bedroom the color of the Pacific Ocean as I saw and photographed it off the coast of Mendocino. That took a few days, since I’m out of practice, and I’m neater than the rent-a-painters. Also, after having had other folks living here while I was away, I needed to clean, and clean, and clean—every corner of every drawer and cupboard.
Finally, I began to unpack and consider where I want to put things, as if I hadn’t lived here for twenty years. It’s been a meditation this time, unlike the one-day move that helped me up the stairs and out of the boxes in a whirl of wonderful helping friends and family.
Putting away the things I had with me in The Beast was the easy part, as I’d been traveling pretty light by the end of my trip. But I have an 8’ x 4’ storage loft that I built in the hallway over my entryway door, and that was stuffed full of all sorts that I didn’t bring along in the motorhome. There was also one closet that was pretty full of my stored goods, and the boxes of books that I couldn’t bear to part with. Weirdly enough I couldn’t find any of the queen size bed linens, so I went out and bought one set, to go on my new mattress. The rest must be in my son’s attic, where I have the last pile of my stored stuff. There was too much to leave in the apartment, and really not enough to justify renting a storage space for a year—not when you have great kids who were willing to help out.
Speaking of kids, I’ve also been spending lots of time with them and my three grandsons that I missed terribly all through the year of my travels. It’s fall, that busy back-to-school time in a family with three children ages ten, nine, and six. Many after-school activities, meetings, appointments, plus Alice, the best daughter-in-law on the planet, is re-entering the work (for-money) force, and I’m happy to be her backup with the boy-os, meeting them after school, to wrangle dinner and homework sometimes.
And of course, I’ve been meeting up with and hanging out with friends in NYC and Brooklyn—my people, whom I also had dearly missed these past many months. My re-entry has been filled with grace and joy in all the ways that are really important. The only worry I have is that I have not yet sold The Beast, after having her on the market for two months. I reduced the price, and felt like I was close a couple times, but not yet. I’ve got her in a storage spot over the GW Bridge in Englewood, New Jersey. I guess she is safe enough there, but I’m sure she’s lonely. If you know anyone in the market for a lovely, sturdy unit at a great price please let me know!
Funny, in my mind I just heard the echo of my mother’s voice saying, “That should be the worst of your problems!” And yes mom, that’s right. That is the worst of my problems, so I guess I have nothing to complain about.