« If I Can Make it There ... | Main | Insomnia, UK Style »

Enjoy your Journey ...

Sometimes the iPod just knows. I ended my last post with a reference to Kina. As I got on the subway tube this morning on my way to the first official "in residence" day at the office, I hit play and there she was on random shuffle ...

Things are lookin' up for me now ....

But before the London adventure begins, I have to close up NY.

My last weekend was amazing. An overused word perhaps, but amazing nonetheless. I've always said (as have a couple of my friends ... maybe I stole it, who knows) that the best nights in New York City are the ones you don't plan.

Monday was the perfect example. The movers came in about 10 am and were machines. They had my entire place packed, boxed and loaded onto a shipping container within 6.5 hours. And that was including the hour break they took for lunch. Fast, courteous, funny, and informative. "Just how does my stuff get from these boxes to my flat in London?" I asked. He told me the whole process ... they load it on to a shipping container which is on a flatbed on 23rd street, seal it, drive it to a pier and then it's loaded on a boat. Scheduled to get a call here on Dec 8, asking when they can move it it and unpack it. So cool.

So the place was empty, I didn't have the meltdown I thought I would, but was finally filled with the excitement of ohmygod it's really happening, I'm really going to go. I sort of wished I could just get on the plane right then and there.

But a dinner plan had already been set, and there were still some loose ends at the office to tie up on Tuesday. So I went to Time Warner Express, turned in my cable boxes and modem, paid the final bill, and then had a half hour to spare before dinner at 7pm. Found myself near g, so I downed a last Ketle Soda there, and then met one of my favorite ex-office colleages (we're dropping like flies out of the NY office) and her husband for a fabulous dinner at Sette.

The plan was to just call it an early night and head over to Queens for a last night at the Barn du Carpet Rouge, where my gracious host had offered to let me rest my pre-traveling bones.

But I had a voice message that said, "Hi, it's me and I'm on a train with Becky Nell headed into the city to see my sister in a show. If you're still around, let me know and maybe we can grab somethig to eat or drink after."

Dennis. One of my best friends who is now taking care of the cats while renting our place in Ptow. Have you been to his shop?

And then CB called to see if I was around for one final pop.

So fast forward to Den, CB, Matt, Becky Nell (in from Dallas who we lurve so much), Den's sister Nancy, and me ... hanging out at Arriba, Arriba, laughing and carrying on and swapping stories and gossip and chips and salsa.

CB, Denishoi, and Matt. The three best friends I've had in my NY stay. All together, unexpectedly, on my last night out. It could not have been better if I'd planned it.


So a fairly frantic day yesterday ensued (although I did take time out for one final rub -- Johnny at Service Station is quite lovely), and I made it to the airport with no undue drama. A few more goodbyes. Several tears held back(although in hindsight I find it interesting the only time I started crying in pulbic was walking out of 420, after giving Hector a big hug).

A new sleeping pill as the plane took off, and when I opened my eyes, we were 40 minutes from landing.

Yesterday was a jumble. Getting stuff up ALL THOSE STAIRS, wandering around the new neighborhood, running a couple errands, napping, and welcome to London pints with OB, who has enrolled me in his submersion course of London culture ... or London gay finishing school, as he calls it.

And here we are.

Getting out of the tube this morning at Liverpool Station, I had that first day of school feeling. I was coming into an office I've worked in for the past 15 months, with people I already know. But the floors have been restacked since I last left, and now I was to have my own desk, my own office-like space (we're on an open concept, but I'm situatted in a corner, not in a pod of people), my own London phone extension.

It's like starting a new year at an old school. Fresh notebooks, fresh pens, familiar but changed surroundings ... all very exciting.

As I walked through the revolving doors, I took a deep breath to start everything afresh, and the iPod knew my thoughts once more ...

Yay, though we venture through the valley of the stars ...

First day of school, in a new city, (country) and feels like I'm seventeen. Again.