Thursday, May 8, 2008

Leaving New York never easy (it's pulling me apart)

Another song lyric-inspired title, this one from a song I wasn't even aware of until a comment from Joey on a recent post. I have returned to Utah (flew back on Monday), which has its pluses and minuses. Three "signs" from the hours just before and after my departure that indicate I should get back to NYC as soon as I can:

1. While walking the three blocks back to my apartment from my going-away dinner I wrote about in my last post, I heard what I'm pretty sure were gunshots nearby--the only ones I heard in that neighborhood in the six months I lived there. It was as if the 'hood knew I was leaving, and was already beginning to unravel.

2. When I got back to Utah and saw my family, they commented that I looked a little thinner. I weighed myself (the first time I stepped on a scale, I think, since I was home at Christmas, eating several pounds of chocolate and peanut brittle a day), and found that I'm about 20 pounds lighter than when I arrived in New York. It's all from forced exercise: having to walk everywhere, climb a lot of steps, and the past few months, daily trips between libraries at Columbia carrying 30-60 pounds of books. I don't think I ever deliberately exercised in New York.

3. I got home and hung out with my family in Murray for a few hours, and was just about to head back to Provo when Quiana, my friend who's been using my car in my absence, called to tell me that it wouldn't start. She ended up getting it towed to Pep Boys, who replaced the starter and battery. So it runs again now, but the driver's side window is stuck down for some reason. And it rained a lot today. Cars suck.

So, yeah, right now the balance is heavily in New York's favor as to where I hope to be living a few months from now. In the last few days before I left, some people asked me what I would miss the most. The obvious answer is "the people," because it covers a lot of related things, and of course the people (both my friends and New Yorkers in general) are pretty outstanding. But here are some other things I'll miss about New York, in no particular order (well, besides the order I type them here):

--Nuts 4 Nuts
--kids playing baseball in the empty swimming pool in the park by my apartment (I wish I had a picture of this)
--"I know, right?" (a favorite phrase of Rachel, Amy, Jessica, Sarah, and likely many others; I think it comes from Mean Girls, but I don't remember girls in Utah saying it much)
--my per diem!
--not having to worry about cars
--seeing places I recognize from TV shows and movies
--having rooftop parties broken up by the cops
--hearing people say "Where you at?" into their Nextels in real life instead of just on commercials
--an amazing array of food options
--cool old buildings
--tons of other stuff

A few things I won't miss:

--humidity (although Utah's dryness isn't always great either)
--trash on the streets
--people talking to you after you've already walked past them (street vendors and panhandlers are the usual culprits for this; I find it really annoying)
--weekend subway service changes
--laundromats (Holly thinks they're great, but she's, well, wrong--doing laundry was definitely the worst part of my trip)

Utah's gonna have to make a pretty sweet offer to keep me here.


Megan said...

Welcome back, Jeff. Utah and I have missed. And, according to my coworker, you're home just in time for some American Idol hooplah that's about to go down in Murray, so be excited for that.

And I'm with Holly: I LOVE laundromats.

PS: I'm just now finishing up Day 3 of 24, in celebration of your homecoming. I watch it at work while doing other stuff, and my coworkers wonder why I'm all stressed out. Geesh.

Tamara said...

um... yeah.

i think you just need to come back. that pretty much solves the debate. let me know when we should throw your "welcome back" party, k?

Kristina said...

I love watching movies now and thinking, "I know exactly where in NY that is!" It's a fun feeling.

But the worst thing on your list is definitely subway weekend service changes. Those were the bane of our existence. Other than the humidity... and I'm from the south (but there's no escaping it in NY). Welcome back! LOL's missed you! See you tonight!