Snowflakes in France

Reflections of a 20-something woman in publishing

Month: November, 2008

Escaping The City

I find myself packing…again. When I first moved up into my apartment, I was amazed at how often my roommates traveled. Every weekend it seemed like. And when they weren’t gone for work, they took the weekend to go back home, to visit friends and family.

Most people in New York City don’t spend their weekends strolling down 5th Avenue and meandering through The Met and The MOMA. They escape. (I’m still looking for a statistic to support me on this, but all I can find are travel guides and tips for all the people who want to escape the city. I decided that in itself was good enough support for now.)

At my job, the traveling seems to come in spurts, and I’m in the middle of the first one. Three weekends ago, I was in Orlando. I spent the last week and a half in DC. I got back yesterday and tomorrow I’m going to Cape Cod.

I can see how it might become exhausting to travel every weekend, to avoid the grocery store because any food would just go bad, to unpack and repack a suitcase every few days. But traveling for work gives me a sense of adulthood. And yet the excitement of it all reminds me how young I am, how new I am to this life.

I didn’t take many photos in Orlando, but I did remember to document the first hotel room I stayed in for business purposes.

A Queen-sized room at Hilton Garden Inn at Seaworld.

A Queen-sized room at Hilton Garden Inn at Seaworld.

As I mentioned earlier, New Yorkers escape for fun as well as for work, so I sandwiched my week-long course in DC between two weekends on the town. Julie and Keith are still there, and as a little group of journalism nerds, we went to see the Library of Congress and the Newseum.

Schweeties at the Capitol!

Schweeties at the Capitol!

Front pages across the nation on Nov. 22, 2008

Front pages across the nation on Nov. 22, 2008

After I get back from a Cape Cod Thanksgiving, I’ll be off to San Francisco for one night, for one dinner, before flying across the country again to my little room in Hoboken, NJ. And as much as I’ve enjoyed all this escaping, I’m sure my suitcase won’t mind hiding under my bed for a few months after all this excitement.

I’m too young for this to be happening.

“Your diaper was the first one I ever changed!” Denise marveled at how far I had come since then and she launched into a story about how she and Kurt had argued over who had to change me and how it should be done. (A charming lunch conversation, I assure you).

But as my parents’ old friends asked questions, the details about my lovely bohemian life began to surface. Well actually, I live across the river in New Jersey…yes, I have two roommates even with the cheaper rent over there…Laundry? I walk a block and a half. And the kicker: I come home to a futon every night — alone.

“Yeah, living the life,” Denise reflected. “…if only you had a man to share it with,” she smiled sweetly.

“He could raise your standard of living a notch,” Kurt chimed in. “Upper East Side, Upper West Side!”

“Not that you should live with him before you’re married,” Denise quickly interjected.

Suddenly I wanted to go back to the diaper-day chat. I laughed, shook my head softly and changed the subject.

But, REALLY?! How does this offend me? Let me count the ways.

1. I’m 22. Who is husband hunting at 22?

2. Raise my standard of living? Pray tell, should I take up gold digging, or go for men 10 years older than me? Just because my first job is not making me big bucks does NOT mean that I need a man to be financially successful.

3. Ummm…weren’t we just talking about my dirty diaper? How did that transition happen? Also, it’s been 5 years since I’ve seen these people.

4. I got a job within two months of graduating. I moved to New York City from Kentucky. I lived in a hostel with nothing but a suitcase. I have made my parents proud. Can we just enjoy my success without wishing a man was attached to it?

5. No woman should be harassed about marriage, especially not without any invitation to do so. If this continues, I’ll be driven by mere parental-peer pressure to view singlehood as a burden rather than a choice.

Notice anything else? Please add it.