I love the magic of opening my eyes, sitting up slightly and peaking out the window to see white. It is easy to forget it is a normal weather situation but becomes this miracle. The whole streets-cape is different. It is quiet and no footprints on the sidewalk yet.
A few hours later the concrete appears everywhere, feet sweeping it away. The distant sound of shovels scraping, the prettiest sound in the world. And a little bit of sadness fills my mind, like the day after christmas or when summer is fading. The excitement was short lived.
There is a man that lives above me that gets puffed by the time he reaches my floor. I can hear his breathing under the door. It happens everyday. Then onwards and upwards he goes, each heavy step stretching and creaking the wall beside my head.
And I regret this, as part of the fun of the writing is just saying anything. Cause someone will understand, even if it is just one person. And that person may nod while reading or smile or close the page down and say “never again” or something to that nature.
I tried writing a comic strip today. It amused me. I feel that we are told we are bad drawers unless we have a standard. But maybe I just want to set a new standard that everyone sets themselves. It felt good to do and I shared it around the office. I doubt they enjoyed it as much as I did or even understood it. But that is not the point, I was creating and sharing like we all should.
Last night I sat beside an ice skating rink in Bryant Park, the Christmas stalls now closed and empty. Spending time with my good mate and just being in the space really made me happy. I feel home here and I imagined seven rats trying to walk across the ice and they were into it.
I often hear songs that I have strong memories of a past love. And it will never be able to be anything else but a memory of those times.
Once or twice I have heard one and love the song so much I force it to be relevant to my current life. Or I flag a song when I have been single thinking, you know what I want this song attached to my future.
Today that happened, where I heard a song and instantly was brought to the memory of the past where a man I loved was so moved, every time he heard this song, he cried. Like really cried. I was never that moved by the song but was so intrigued at the reaction I will always remember it. When he sunk low under the jets of the shower he was in and sobbed. The power of music.
Now I heard it today and I feel thankful. As it makes me think of where I am now and where I have been taken. I smiled, and then the lady with the fluffy pink coat on the subway thought I was smiling at her and she smiled and it got weird. Thanks.
Its 3:35pm so it means its time. The yellow that hovered across the sky through summer has landed on the leaves. The leaves landed on the wet road and met the other leaves who kissed many colors of orange. Some people think its cold enough to wear sleeping bag jackets while some wear a long sleeved shirt. The cats sit in the window getting the sun, their world hasn’t really changed yet.
I wish I had a tool that let me seek out the brightest and most colorful tree. But then that tool wouldn’t allow me to discover the others while I search for that tree. I do proudly say the one outside my house may be the most vivid orange and red I have ever seen. A woman sheepishly snapped a photo on her way to work. She saw me see her take the photo and we had an unspoken exchange. “It’s beautiful huh”. The next morning the rain carried the leaves down to the ground and they look like a messy artist who had been painting the trees left splatters everywhere. An artist so carefree and generous that they didn’t care where this color pallet landed. As long as it was for everyone to see. It was their duty to make sure people looked up from their walks with their heads in phones and just stop and look at the color. Even if it was to take said photos on their phones and continue on their way, boosting the saturation and adding filters for everyone to click “like”. The next hour or two will be a sporadic collection of likes of those around the world who have never seen such hue.
These leaves are then carried inside, onto the worn apartment corridor carpet. Not as social in here, as the leaves can barely make out the next, one or two steps higher than them. “Hey, its warmer in here huh”. “Yes, even more so up here on the third step”. “Oh you are new, you just come in?” “Yes, on a boot with this yellow fella”.
I wonder how many leaves go into the ocean. Cause that is an adventure, from a still quiet yard. A blast of air and rain took them over the roof and into the front garden. Then the next day another gust carried into the gutter. From there it was very dark and lots of pauses. Meeting many interesting and not so nice characters until a gush pushed them out underwater into the salty cool.
I remember a photo where my dear friend heather and I had a leaf fight. June 2003 and my friend Rachel who was a budding photographer snapped it. We were I want to find it, maybe she has a copy?
I loved how traces of leaf would stick to woolen sweaters after an adventure as a kid. It really was the mark of fun that had been had.
My possum Peter used to like touching the leaves on the front grass. Gently treading on them, one footstep at a time. Then a car would drive nearby and he wouldn’t be as gentle and crunch across the rest and up the bare tree. Hiding in the sticks and branches. He looked below him from up above and the car drove away leaving the quiet in its place.
They shouted out “Megatron” and a burly dude walked up and took his Venti pumpkin spice latte. I’m now sitting down and watching the morning pedestrian traffic on 54th and 3rd. The line for coffee goes out the door. Everyone holding their side bag while looking at their phone. All just came from beds scattered across the five boroughs and beyond. And now I am part of this. My latte is a little too hot as it warms my throat in the Fall air, I have a pass that gets me into my building. I sit at a desk all day, answer questions about health insurance and laugh with my colleagues. A few days a week I see the man I fell in love with and ponder what is next. My evenings are filled up most nights with the new friends I have made. I spent a Friday night at a friend of a friends place knitting. I went to a broadway show on Thursday night and felt cynical about it and it shows how spoilt I have been. That distant myth that I will write something to satisfy my ache of creativity disappears around the next block. The next block after has another hot dog stand. I keep getting notifications of bands I have always wanted to see live, are performing in concert. But then I cannot afford to go, and then I am more honest and admit I really can’t sit through live music events too often. I need a chair and no one bumping against me in their own glee of seeing the band they have always wanted to see and saved up for. People walk by me asking each other “where are we? Is that the subway entrance?” in many languages. Every store is selling pumpkins and five dollar scarecrows. I can already see them face down in the trash. I rely too much on spell check. People are polite in NYC, always opening doors for each other. Movies tell us they aren’t. I am avoiding going up the elevator to my floor. I don’t like sitting down so long. This pumpkin spice latte does OK.
It has been an eight year wait while Robyn went on a creative adventure to explore and be inspired. Now she is back with a classic Robyn track, which has made me so happy. The lyrics themselves are sad but she has the incredible knack of creating an intoxicating dance beat to marry with the words. You really can embrace sadness and walk out of it.
I have been in in the city of New York for five months now.
In that time, I spent three months seeking my next role, obtaining that role and then slowly setting up life here.
Two days ago I got my own apartment in Brooklyn, a walk-up. This is the term used for no elevator but flights of stairs. I love my little new home. I have a mattress on the floor and an old bed side cabinet I found on the side of the road from the 1930s. There was a pack of condoms in the drawer when I found it. I jumped on Amazon and bought with same day delivery a Dr Who shower curtain because my old house mate and best buddy refused to let me have one in my home in Melbourne. Priorities hey. Now to find a couch (not from the street though).
It is warm and humid. I have always raved about how I could live in this sort of weather everyday. Not in NYC, it is like walking around the mouth of a homeless person. Dripping by the time I get to work after travelling the subway.
I now work in an office cubicle on 10th floor in Midtown Manhattan. 18 months ago, if you told me this I would not have believed you. It is like I am living some dude’s life In a film before some giant wave hits the building. I have no idea what this city may bring, but as a wise woman told me last week , “if you are open to NYC, NYC will open to you.”
I have been down the path, where I feel you shouldn’t go. When a loved one, like your grandmother, begins to get dementia. But instead of making yourself available to not miss the moments, you run. You run because you do not know how to approach a loved one not remembering who you are. You are unsure if the call you make or the hug you give will be one they are recognising. And you forget that you should DO it anyway. You assume they wont. I barely understand it all and its new to me. So many reasons, none of them are needed.
“Hey Nan, it’s Me!”
“Oh love, hello! Are you still in Melbourne?”
Smiling. “Yeah, I am Nan, still down here. Warm day today!”
“Yeah, you with your brother?”
“Oh I mean, your uncle, have you seen him?”
“Not as much as we should Nan! Has he come to visit?”
“Yeah, he was here for Christmas!”
“Yeah, when I was! Was a lovely day. Sorry I wasn’t there longer”
“That’s OK love. Understand you have your life to get on with too.”
“But that life has you in it, Nan!”
“Yes I know, but everyone has to move and grow up. Some days it is tough, but I love you all”
“I want to come up there again soon. Can I stay there in April?”
“Love, of course, you can! Plenty of room.”
“Great, you will see me in April then!”
“Oh, this has made my day!”
She shouts out to my cousin down the hall, “Yes, he called me! I was only thinking of him this morning!”
Smiling, and getting a few tears. Why did I hold off on this?
“You there? Love, OK I have to go, but thank you for calling”
“I love you, Nan, look forward to seeing you soon!”