It’s been three months since I moved to NYC. These last few months have just been dedicated to adjusting to the change. I’m homesick already, which I didn’t think would happen! I was in such a rush to leave DC, I didn’t stop and think about what would happen should I actually miss it. And miss it, I do. I miss the people I left behind every single minute of every single day. I have some great friends and DC and though I celebrated them often when we lived in the same city, now that they’re so far away, I am appreciating them so much more.
I was walking around saying that I miss the people in DC, but not so much the city itself. But now, I miss that too! One morning, I was lying in bed remembering Georgia Avenue. I have driven down that road so many freakin times, I know it like the back of my hand. I can conjure up near perfect images of it in my head, but not seeing it live everyday is tough. A lot tougher than I expected. Speaking of driving, I miss that too! I never EVER thought I would say that, but some mornings when I’m waiting to get on the overcrowded subway, there’s nothing I want more than to hop in my moderately-priced mid-sized sedan and roll the eff out!
And then, there’s the cleanliness issue. I never noticed or appreciated it before, but DC is one of the cleanest cities I’ve ever been to. New York, while lovely, beautiful, trendy, and fabulous, is a dirty cesspool of a place. For a germophobe like me, functioning here has been a real challenge! Riding the subway everyday and getting coughed and sneezed on by all manner of sketchy people, I’m basically living out my worst nightmare! I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve nearly fallen when the train accelerates because I’m trying not to hold on to the poles on the train. Those things are a breeding ground for germs! It’s been rough on the kid!
The thing is, despite all of this, I am loving this experience! Getting out of DC and living in the one city that I have found so intriguing for my entire adult life is a dream come true (even if that “dream” is sometimes a “nightmare”!)! But I must admit that the situation would be even better if I lived alone. I love my apartment… like, it is THE best apartment that I’ve seen in New York. Well, with the exception of Jack’s apartment… that thing was sick! But other than that, my apartment takes the cake. The only thing is… it’s not MY apartment. I live with a roommate who actually owns our unit. And even though I pay rent here, and I suspect that I probably pay the majority of her mortgage when you really break it down, I will always feel like a guest in this house. That’s why the last couple of weeks I’ve been literally obsessed with finding my own place.
I’m sure you were wondering what I could’ve been doing all these months that was so freakin important that I couldn’t be bothered with updating this blog? Well, I couldn’t focus because I literally spend all of my free time searching for apartments. And what’s the best way to find apartments in New York City? Well, I polled a bunch of people and they all assured me that, these days, everyone uses Craig’s List. I found this unbelievable, but no matter who I asked, I was directed to CL, and so I finally decided to use it. That’s how I ended up in my current situation, which is not “bad” by any stretch of the imagination. It’s just not “good” either. I am looking for the perfect NYC apartment, and what I’m discovering is that the perfect apartment is as elusive as the perfect man… is hard to locate than the Holy Grail, is more difficult to secure than an Olympic gold medal or a Super Bowl ring. Yeah, it really is that serious. Ask anyone who lives here. It takes WORK to find the “right” place. I don’t have a ridiculous list of criteria that this place has to meet either, so I really don’t see the big deal. I mean, basically, I’m looking for a studio or 1BR apartment, in Manhattan (preferably the Upper West Side or Southwest Harlem), that’s close to the train, with a doorman, an elevator, and a convenient laundry situation, and that won’t break the bank. Doesn’t sound hard, right? Well, guess what? Apparently, that shit is damn near IMPOSSIBLE to find. I look everyday, and the things that I come up with are always subpar.
I did find a really nice furnished 1BR apartment in Soha (South Harlem… and, yes, the real estate folks really call it that! There’s also SpaHa, which is short for Spanish Harlem – a place I am trying to avoid!) for a great price, BUT even though the unit was nice the building itself was a dump… AND you had to take your clothes to a Laundromat. But, um… I don’t do the Laundromat. That’s not a part of the deal. So, I had to scrap that. The highlight of that trip was that the owner and I had been going back and forth and he seemed like a decent guy. His name was Sal and he was a nice older Italian man who was always available when I called to ask questions… or so I thought! I woke up early on a Saturday morning to meet Sal so that I could view the apartment. When he showed up, I was surprised to find that he was an uber-tall super fine really sweet Dominican dude that was around my age! Of all the luck! But after we talked a little more, he explained that he was renting his apartment because he is moving in with his long-term girlfriend. Of course he is!! Again, of all the luck… BAD luck! Argh! Anyway, it was nice to see that there are fine professional brown male homeowners out here in Harlem. Gives me a bit of hope, I suppose.
I’ve met a few other really cool people as well, but those are stories for another day. Right now, I’m faced with a dilemma that I’m having a hard time solving. So, basically, I found an apartment that is damn there perfection. The only thing is, it’s in the same complex where Mystery Man lives. Oh yeah… I suppose I should also tell you a little about that. We’ve actually spent quite a bit of time together since I moved here. We’ve had some really great times, and, again, those are stories for another day. (Hopefully, I’ll get around to writing them all down sooner or later!) At any rate, despite all the great times we’ve had and wonderful memories we’ve made over the last three months, we’re no closer to being together than we were when I lived in DC. That’s disappointing. But what’s worse is that now we might end up living literally around the corner from one another. That could be a very good thing, but it could also be a very bad thing… a thing with numerous repercussions… some that aren’t even foreseeable at this point. This worries me (cue Tim Gunn).
Prime real estate in NYC, especially Manhattan, is a rare find and, should it present itself, must not be passed over under any circumstances. So should I consider giving up an apartment that basically meets all of my criteria to keep from creeping Mystery Man out? I mean, he knows that I’ve considered his apartment complex before, but I wonder if he’s considered how he would feel if I actually moved in there. I mean, whatever… I am seriously considering it. Teresa made a good point – what would I do if I happened to see Mystery Man around there with another woman. Well, basically, it would kill me, but maybe that’s what I need to see so I can move on! My thing is, the community is HUGE… there are like 11 buildings. And I refuse to live in the same building as he does, so that’s not even an option. But a surrounding building shouldn’t be off limits. I have every right to move in there. It’s a free country and I can do what I damn well please… but I also don’t want him to feel weird or to feel as though I’m a stalker. It could get weird! Honestly, this place is just the best fit for me, and I’m drawn to it for some reason. I’m gonna go for it!
But if it’s such a great idea, then why do I feel so strange about my decision?