Thursday, February 10, 2011

Three Year Thing

New York was supposed to be a two to three year thing. I would get the big city out of my system then bounce. I was sure of it.

During my first couple years here I had trouble committing to anything that seemed to dig roots. I let winters pass without an expensive "real" coat, sure I'd make a move before the season rolled around again. I never upgraded from a set of ugly plastic drawers in my bedroom. Why spend on furniture I'd eventually lug cross country? I constantly imagined myself elsewhere- in Boulder, in Tampa, in DC, in Chicago, even Buenos Aires.

At the beginning of the month my roommate moved out, leaving me with an apartment that looked like it had been robbed- next to no furniture, not even a spoon to my name. She had furnished our tiny two-bedroom years before I got there and of course boxed it all up for her new place when she left. I needed a new everything. Plastic furniture was unacceptable in my bedroom; It would be blasphemous in our living room.

Alone, sitting on the floor of my empty kitchen the day after my roommate moved out (and a few days before my new roommate moved it), it all finally hit me.

I had spent the last 24 hours punching my credit card number into furniture Web sites, clicking yes to everything that would make my abode livable again. I never hesitated. In fact, the idea of finally making an apartment my own excited me (even if it is exclusively furnished by Ikea and Craig's List).

Through all the transition it never occurred to me that I could just get up and go- toss those plastic drawers and leave NYC, like I always planned. Really, it's been months- maybe even a year- since I've even thought about getting out of the city like I constantly used to. Instead, three years after moving from Florida, I find the idea of permanency here comforting. I'm eager to commit and grateful for the attachments I've already made. I'll paint my walls, splurge on a dresser, maybe even fall for someone here. I don't mind the ties.

I plan to stay awhile.