Saturday, August 11, 2007

Late at night

I'm so sick of packing. Pack this, pack that, re-pack for a better fit. Pack for my parents, pack for the storage, pack for re-packing for Paris.

But, ahhhh, Paris. I'm finally starting to get excited. I might have landed an awesome 30m2 (=323 feet2) efficiency on the top floor (5th) of a building just off of the Moulin Rouge in Pigalle. How apropos would it be for me to live in the heart of the red district?

Anyway. I have to get to packing some more. I'm down to 1 spoon, 1 fork, 1 knife, 1 coffee cup (the coffee maker is staying until I walk out the door), 1 glass, a few bathroom items, my bed, my laptop, the gin, the fridge is full. I'm almost all done. Almost. Dad comes tomorrow at noon, we haul into the trailer and head off into the sunset - literally, driving west. Then, we unpack some of it, collapse, sleep, and run the storage stuff over at 7am Monday. I head back to my 1 spoon, fork, knife, etc and start the god-awful clean. I'm outta here on Tuesday at 1pm-ish. Might stay in town for a last hurrah with the colleaguey friends or might just leave.

I've said a few additional goodbyes, but it sure feels weird. Thanks for stopping by yesterday, a. It was nice to see you. Not sure we can have that drink at this point, but I'll keep you in mind next Monday night when I'm scrubbing away.

So, I've started a Paris blog which will be viewable by my family, friends, and maybe some of you - if you behave. (Although I have a feeling I'll have to invite you individually and not post a direct link here.) Late last night I wrote about going to graduate school and how that process started and happened. And then, I got a bit personal. Here's that, and I'm off to ... yes, pack:

So, yeah, on a totally personal note, I haven't really cried too much yet. I've lived here for 6 years and have made some amazing friends and have loved my job - I'm quitting to further my career not because I want to escape it.

It hasn't felt too hard to leave, but leaving feels hard. I've been tempering my excitement and have rather blushed when telling folks around here that I was going to Paris for grad school. I say that it's a departure for me - knowing full well that I've traveled all my life except for spending the longest amount of consecutive time here. I say that, knowing full well that my supervisor always reminds me of the time when we were interviewing her - about 3 years into my job - and I informed her that I wouldn't be here much longer and that I was going to go to grad school. I guess there's something to be said for incubation.

It's kind of odd though. Once you tell people you're leaving there's a window of time for your welcome and spotlight. After about a month people tire of hearing about you leaving and after 2 good-bye parties they're ready to see you to the door. For the movers-on it's a bit harder. Although it's always been said that it's more difficult for the left-behind. While it seems that everyone around me has moved on and keeps trucking, I feel a little stagnant - packing, seeing the same walls day after day, wondering what they're doing, spying on my colleagues through the secret leftover passcode-entry email. And I know what it's like to be left. You gotta pick up and move on, continue on, feel the sting of the pain of sadness and then keep going. If the sting keeps reappearing over and over it makes the separation harder.

I got new glasses and showed my ex-boyfriend (now good friend). I went from thick rimmed glasses to no rims. "What's different about them? I can't remember what you wore before." The after-work drinks I was going to get a week after I quit suddenly dissipated into one person going on early vacation, another having her parents in town, and suddenly I slip off the calendar because life continues.

I don't expect to be noticed or remembered. I just wasn't ready to be forgotten so soon.

I've been looking forward for a long time though. I think that's why I haven't cried much yet. I will feel that homesickness when I get there. I will want to look back and thank god for online photo albums so I can cry over this and that back then.

But there are these odd little things that make me tear up:
I didn't wash the towel my last lover used and when I packed it I felt sad. In cleaning and packing I found a few things my ex might want. It's almost like break-up all over: these should be your things. The last Friday in town when the sun is setting so perfectly rosy over the buildings and lakes. The sound of the buzzing cicadas on fire. The slow yellow glow added to the green leaves as a sign of autumn. The last dive weekend where each block hosts a pile of used couches, clothes, desks, cookery, tvs, more clothes, books. The last time I visit my local liquor store.

I did my tarot cards last night. No, I'm not a hippie but I got it as a gift and tried it once and it was dead on. So, every now and then, I tap in. It confirmed only good things in the future, only good lessons in the past.

We shall see. Nous verrons.


a said...

I think you know I can behave...

I'd love to read...

noman said...

Let me add my voice to the chorus of 'bon voyage' you hae proabably been hearing. I'd love to hear about your new life.

Have fun!