July 14, 2008

Street Walking

When I moved into my apartment last year, I did so for many reasons: proximity to public transportation, a bedroom, a balcony, hot and cold water that came out of the same bathroom faucet, etc. However, there was one reason overshadowing all others. My new apartment is a five minute walk from Mike’s condo. That distance (or lack thereof) was a blessing compared to the $20 cab or 45 minute public transportation ride that came with my old crappy, cramped studio. I could not have been happier when I signed my lease knowing I could walk to Mike’s place in a matter of minutes.

Now my new place was not without flaws. It didn’t have the dishwasher I had hoped for and it showed obvious signs of wear and tear from what I estimate is its 350 year history. (Yes, I do think my apartment building is older than the United States) There also was no laundry room in the building. The landlords advertised the building as having laundry “RIGHT AROUND THE CORNER!!!!!” I took that to mean free laundry at Mike’s place. He has a washer and dryer in his condo, so about every two weeks or so, I’d walk down to his place with laundry basket in hand and laundry bag slung over my shoulder. He also has in the wireless Internet at his place. I successfully stole the Internet at my apartment up until a few months ago. At that point, Mike’s place served as my own personal Wi-Fi hot zone. In case you can’t tell, Mike’s place is much nicer than mine. Oh, he also has a dishwasher.

We have been dating for more than a year and a half now. When I moved to his neighborhood we had been dating for about 8 months - granted we had worked together more than a year at that point. Moving up here was a bit of a test for our relationship. He and I were both pretty sure living closer to one another would be a good thing. It has been good - so good I think that I’ve earned a reputation in this community.

You see, for the past year, I think I’ve been known as the crazy bag lady of Wolcott Ave.

As is apparent from the paragraphs above, Mike’s place is far nicer than mine, so consequently we spent much more time at his place than mine. About mid-way through my year lease, I began spending most weekends there. And it was a rarity when I wouldn’t bring something with me - a change of clothes, my laundry, my laptop and occasionally my cat. So on most Fridays, more often than not I’d be walking down the street carrying something. Usually not just one something though. I’d have the laptop/cat combo, knowing I could manage both. Or the laptop/laundry combo. Or on a rare occasion, the laundry/cat combo. Never all three though. I’m not that strong. Or perhaps, I never wanted to be perceived as that crazy.

Channeling my inner Sherpa, I would walk down the street Friday night carrying whatever I was to live with that weekend. Mike and I would spend the weekend doing whatever it is that we do that makes our weekends pass so quickly. But as always Sunday night rolled back around and I’d start thinking about my long, five minute walk home. I found myself staying later and later on Sundays, until it was too late to walk home. So then I’d stay another night and walk home in the morning. I can’t begin to guess how many people I passed those early Monday mornings - they on their way to the train, in their nice work clothes with coffee in hand, and me doing my modified version of the walk of shame, in need of a shower and with cat in hand.

The good news is my crazy bag lady days are coming to a close. I am moving again. Not too surprising I am sure, but I’m moving into Mike’s place! It was the path we thought we were heading down when I moved last August, so it makes me incredibly happy to think that in a year we’ve grown close enough to believe that a five minute walk is too far.

Although I guess that bad news is I actually have to move, so my crazy bag lady status will stay intact until August 1. If anything, I’m ramping it up a bit. Why yesterday night I carried a backpack, purse, shoulder bag bursting with dresses and hangars, and a tub of cat litter to Mike‘s place. And tonight, well tonight it was two purses, an armful of winter coats and hoodies and a plastic bag with shoes, a cook book and a hair dryer. My goal for this move is to have it go as smoothly as possible, which means as gradually as possible. I figure if I take a little at a time it won’t seem so bad. With any luck (and a lot of arms muscle) all my things will successfully be moved down the street and into Mike‘s home in a little over two weeks. At that point I’ll have a new goal - to walk down the street with two free hands.

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