My lease is signed, sealed, delivered. It's mine. My savings, well that's another story, for another posting. I want to make sure I spend as much time as possible in this fabulous moment of victory over the New York rental housing market. I'm glowing.
My landlords seem lovelier every time I speak to them. Joe reminds me of my Ethics professor from Darden, Ed Freeman. Like Ed, Joe is mild mannered, a bit shy, intensely brilliant. A professor. As easy-going as they come. His wife, Ann Marie, is equally as kind. She is a photographer who has just had her first book published. Together, they are that kind, interesting couple living in a multi-floor apartment on the Upper West Side that I have heard about, though never actually met. Going into their home, I feel like I am stepping onto some sort of movie set where I will learn some very valuable life lessons. (I’ve, perhaps vainly, cast myself as the young ingénue striving to get her life together in the big city while fascinating people with their own stories come to her aid. However, this is my life so I feel a certain sense of artistic license in creating it.)
Some times I look to the rain as an inconvenience, something I need to slog through to get my errands done. Most of the time though, I am grateful for a rainy day. Actually, if I go too long without one, I tend to get nervous. One because I am obsessed with water conservation, and two because I like to have an excuse to stay inside and putter around my home reading, watching old movies, and cooking comfort food.
Tonight the sky opened up just as I got off the subway and was on my way to sign my lease. I got drenched and I was rushing to make sure I wasn’t late. With my umbrella flapping with the wind and my soggy, squeaky shoes, I should have been annoyed at the timing. And instead, I was grateful, gleeful even.
I like to think of the rain as literally washing away what needs to be washed away. It’s a fresh start. I also like to think that it’s the Universe’s way of blessing us, of reaching out to us so we know she is there, guiding us and watching over us. And this rain in particular seemed to me to be holding out its arms and welcoming me to this new neighborhood that I have honestly dreamed of living in for quite some time now. For the next two years at least, this will be home.
After the deal was done, I measured the main room, the only room, of my apartment to get a feel for dimensions as I consider furniture, decorations, etc. I stepped outside, soaked and surprisingly tired. Though it was all in a good way.
The rain continued, but not nearly as much as when I first arrived at my new digs. I was supposed to meet my friends Katie and Monika for dinner after signing the lease but I was soaked through to the skin, making the prospect of sitting in public like that more than a little uncomfortable. I considered cracking out the umbrella and instead, put it away in my bag. I let the rain wash down over me, letting it carry with it all the anxiety I had built up around finding a job, an apartment, and beginning to build a new life in a new town that is at once familiar and also still a mystery. The Universe has been acting in my favor these last few months and I wanted to drink it all in while I have the chance.