Last week, I moved. Up to a posh neighborhood, in a building where men with white gloves open doors for me, and a shuttle van chauffeurs myself and a select few to the subway (so long crosstown bus!). It’s a bit surreal, and I kind of can’t believe this is my life yet. I’ve had to go to my old apartment a couple of times to clean up and pick up odds and ends left behind, and oddly, it’s still felt like home. A smaller, shittier, lonelier home, but still, it was my sanctuary for two years and the first place I lived in the city on my own, and for better or for worse, it holds some sentimentality to me. It was a rough start though.
When I moved into my last apartment, I spent the first week cleaning and sanitizing the crap out of it. It was a while before I felt enough bleach had seeped in for me to feel comfortable enough to take a bath. I battled cockroaches for the first few months, and invested a small fortune in poisons and traps. As time passed and the roaches finally got the message that I was their Grim Reaper, it started to become home to me. The first friend who visited me dubbed my little apartment, “The Bento Box,” as it resembled one of those lacquer boxes that Japanese restaurant lunch specials are served in. I didn’t realize it was so small while I was there, but being away from it now, I’m seeing it in a different light. When I went there tonight to do the final cleaning, I was surprised to feel that I didn’t like it anymore. I could no longer see the charming and cozy space that I used to call home, even though it’s the same space it was before. I didn’t have a lot of stuff when I lived there, and I’m not a person who’s overly attached to stuff anyhow, so that wasn’t it. I couldn’t put my finger on it at the moment, but when I left and walked into my new place, and sat down on my new couch, it dawned on me. Home is where the heart is. And my heart is here now, in this apartment in the sky with the man I love, and starting a new chapter in this life of mine. Correction, in this life of ours. I’m glad I had a reason to move on.