Where to Begin
It’s been over a month since I last wrote. I wasn’t writing because I didn’t have anything to write about but it was because there’s been so much going on in my life that I didn’t have time to put my thoughts into my writing. It had me thinking that with my life being so chaotic that will there ever have enough time to write again or will anyone care? What made me want to write again was because a reader clear across the world (China to be exact) asked me what was going on with my life. This is a person that I’ve never met before but apparently waits for my next chapter to discuss with his friends about my life in New York. So, for that reader…this one is for you.
Where to begin? I think I will begin with the biggest news that has happened to me and that is; I got a new job. The job did not fall into my lap but rather it came to me with the help of a former coworker. There were so many reasons for me wanting and needing to leave my old job. Upper management wasn’t treating me properly and even though Mr. D. had left and moved to Boston, I could still feel at times like he was still present which I didn’t care for. It was time to move on and once I put my mind to looking for a new job; it was only a matter of two weeks before I got the offer, a promotion and a nice increase in salary. After I told upper management that I was resigning and officially put in my two weeks’ notice; that was the last time they spoke to me. For the following two weeks after my announcement, they acted like I never worked there. The worse part was on my last day of work when I asked human resources about a time for my exit interview and they no idea that it was even my last day. My bosses dropped the ball and they never said goodbye or thanked me for being there for three years. There was no question about it; I had made the right decision to leave the agency and it was certainly time for a new beginning.
With a new job under my belt, I decided to continue this new path of new beginnings. I only took a couple of days off between my old job and starting my new one. On one of those days, I decided to go shopping for new furniture. In the twenty years that I’ve lived here, I never had the opportunity to buy brand new furniture that would be mine and mine alone. It felt liberating as I was shopping for couches, end tables and lamps. In a city like New York, where it can be treated as one big adult playground without any real responsibilities. It’s only until you decide to try and be an adult where you see the city from a different perspective. I felt good about the choices I was making and more importantly they were my choices and no one else.
Two weekends ago, I went to Boston to visit my best friend, her husband and their baby. It would be my first Boston trip without Mr. D. and after all the trips with him over the years, I had a good grip on how to navigate the city. On my bus ride to Boston, it was surreal knowing he was there, knowing he was up in his penthouse apartment that I picked out and how I wouldn’t be seeing him at all. And older version of myself would’ve most likely contacted him, seen him and started things back up again with hopes of change. However, my fingers didn’t even want to look up his contact information. Instead, I read my book and got excited to see my friend whom I hadn’t seen in months. The visit was short and sweet but we managed to cram in a lot of baby time and once the baby was with her parents, we bar hopped which was also fun. I came back full of life and ready to tackle my new job and anything else that life had in store for me.
This past week/weekend, everything was starting to fall into place. I was learning people’s names at my new job, my couch and end table were getting delivered (and put together since I can’t be trusted with a hammer) and I also began chatting with a new guy that I met on Tinder. He was the oldest man I had chatted with (51 years old) and my main reason for entertaining the correspondence was because his sense of humor was fantastic via text. He would send me “dad jokes” and was persistent on meeting me in person but I had so much going on that I wasn’t free for awhile. However, I did let him know that this past Sunday I could potentially move something around and meet for a coffee. He lives in my neighborhood, so I knew of a bunch of places to choose from should he want to meet on Sunday.
After having a semi-late night with my friend on Friday, I told myself that I must have a productive day on Saturday. So, I got up early and took myself to a store that I have only been to once and it was torture for me…Trader Joes. There is one on the Upper West Side, so I figured that would be one where everyone is more civilized and not so chaotic like the other ones in the city. I got to the store at 10 a.m. and began placing things in my shopping cart and as I was shopping I got a craving for spaghetti. I figured that is something I can make and not burn the apartment down. I wasn’t paying attention as I got to the aisle where the marinara sauce was and I don’t know how this next part happened but I grabbed a jar and it slipped from my hand and shattered! An employee there said to me, “Don’t move, I will be back with a mop.” I stood there for a few minutes as customers walked by and gave me their side-eyes and one kid even laughed and pointed. The very nice employee cleaned up the mess and offered me a wet paper towel to wipe off the sauce from my shoes and legs. I put my groceries back, left the grocery store and realized that there are certain stores where I just don’t belong.
Yesterday, I woke up and one of the first messages I received was from the guy whom I had been chatting with for about a week or so. He was asking me if I’d like to go to brunch with him. I was hesitant to agree to a brunch on a first-time meeting and he was also the first person I’d ever met from Tinder (an app that I wasn’t sure how to navigate). However, we had been chatting for over a week, he was in his early 50’s and who the hell am I to judge? So, I told him that I could do a brunch but that I wouldn’t be drinking and he agreed for us to meet. He picked a little place on Tenth Avenue not too far from my apartment and when I arrived; he was already waiting for me at a table.
He stood up as I got closer to the table, gave me a hug and asked the waitress for a cup of coffee for me. Everything was going along rather smoothly for a first meeting. He was making jokes, telling me about how he moved here from Cincinnati about a year ago and still getting used to the “city” ways. This man had an apartment in a nice building, good job, well-spoken and as we began to talk about travel that was when things took a turn. We were well into an hour of the brunch when he told me how much he loves going to different beaches. Anyone that knows me, knows how much I love summer and beaches, so I was excited to hear about his enthusiasm for beaches as well.
“Would you like to see some pictures of some of the beaches that I’ve been to?” He asked with a big grin on his face. He motioned for me to move my chair so that I’d be sitting side by side to him. As he opened his phone and began showing me pictures of sunsets, white sand and clear oceans, the pictures began to take a turn. Next thing I know there were pictures of him completely naked on beaches, naked on rocks and naked under waterfalls. I looked at him and said, “Those pictures aren’t really necessary.” He then asked, “After brunch do you want to go back to my place and get nude? I love being nude.” I declined the offer and he got upset with me because he mentioned how in the past when he’s shown his nude pictures to dates that they tend to go back to his place. I just told him that I’m not one those other guys. I moved my chair back to the other side of the table and motioned for the waitress to send over the check. I wasn’t sure if he was pissed or embarrassed or both but he paid for the entire meal and I went home.
As this week begins, I can’t help but be grateful for where I am now. New job, new furniture, great friends, family, readers and the city even with it’s nudist.
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