Snowflakes in France

Reflections of a 20-something woman in publishing

Category: Lodging

I’m all grown up…almost

My college friends are finding out slowly that I’m not in Kentucky anymore. Inevitably, when I tell them I’m working in New York City, their reaction is something along the lines of “Wow, you’re so grown up! I feel like I’ll never get there,” even if they have also graduated and found a job.

So it seems that just by being in NYC, I’m officially a professional, business lady on a much grander scale than I would be in Kentucky. I’m still laughing at this idea. It’s absurd. Especially when I look at my bedroom.

Lumpy futon covered in pale pink sheets with stars on them (I swear my mom bought them in the kids section of the home department), usually strewn in a corner of the mattress and in need of a wash. Wardrobe with doors thrown open (they can’t close actually, but still looks sloppy). Thin and brightly colored rug that slips around on the floor (I’ve been meaning to by one of those rug pads…). The rug also happens to be covered in strands of white-blond hair (I blame the blowdryer) and a few drops of wax from a candle. And last but not least, two mismatched plastic chests with Target stickers still on them, pushed up against the last available wall space.

In short, it looks like a dorm room. I haven’t even put up curtains! This morning I looked it over, actually looked at it for once, and I was ashamed. My roommates have nice, organized grown-up rooms, and mine is a teenage dump.

If I can manage to move to NYC on my own, get a job, find and pay for an apartment up here, and build new friendships, then surely I can make my bed on a daily basis. I think it’s time to grow up a little.

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Moving In New York

It wasn’t until I saw the sweat dripping down Katie’s temple that I realized my face was dripping with sweat also. Moving in New York is a work out.

Forget complaining about hauling boxes out to the moving truck on the street, agonizing over the careful wrapping of dishes, that’s normal. It’s nothing. Nothing compared to trying to get a grip on a futon mattress, an awkwardly shaped object that surprisingly weighs 59 to 75 lbs, according to futonlife.com, as you drag it down the street and into an old, towering apartment complex among millions of old, towering apartment complexes.

Katie and I, along with a helpful man from the street, were on the third spiral staircase in my building. Luckily my apartment is on the fourth floor. I wonder how many people a day struggle to squeeze futons, couches, sound systems, dining room tables up tiny spiral staircases into buildings with narrow, uneven doors. Clearly the architects responsible never considered moving in to the buildings they were designing.

But somehow we managed, and now, three hours later, I’m looking out the living room window and I can see the Empire State Building! Did I mention that I love Hoboken? All the fun parts of living in the city, none of the busy hassle. My room is about the size of two futons laid out next to each other, but it’s cozy and bright. Most importantly, it’s mine.

For the last three weeks I’ve been living out of suitcases. I began at a hostel, a decent enough place if you don’t mind sleeping in a room with five people you don’t know and protecting your food from mice (something I learned the hard way), but it quickly ate up about $350 in a week. That’s what I was paying per month for rent in Kentucky!

So I moved in with some co-workers, and became very familiar with their couches, beds, futons, roommates, boyfriends, cabinets, and bathrooms. But it wasn’t mine.

When I arrived here, I added two dishes to the kitchen. A Cincinnati Post coffee mug (a trinket from my internship there) and a brand new McDonalds plate (a fresh version of the plates my family has used for at least 10 years). I arranged my clothes in the closet, and I think they’re relieved to be out of the stuffy suitcase. My roommates are out of town, but I inspected their collection of DVDs, books and alcohol, and I think we’ll get along.

I feel like a stronger person for finally completing this move. I got a job. I got from a hostel to Hoboken. And now, I got a place to call my own. Now, you can come visit!