1. I'm living in San Francisco
It took about ten minutes of typing and backspacing and typing and highlight-deleting to get that line out. At first, I put off writing about this in any form because I figured my family would like to know that I was moving away from Las Vegas first, but then that obstacle was hurdled, and still nothing. Nothing here, nothing documented. Before this most recent ten-minute fight to write a five-word list item, I’d written no fewer than three posts about the move, and I deleted all of them.
Even now. Even now, 90% of what gets typed, gets cut. I’d honestly rather this post not exist at all, as though by not stating that I live in SF, it isn’t really a fact. And, yes: People move all the time! What’s the big deal? I don’t know, exactly, but strangely enough, it is a big deal for me and I’ve been having trouble swallowing the fact that this is where I live, now. Now, not forever; the truth in that is a small consolation.
I’m not unhappy here, the allergic reaction to the apartment aside. There are Friends and Places to Visit and Things to See and Do! up here, and that’s exciting and fun and interesting. We live by the parks so we’re close– really close– to the museums and the buffalo and a big Dutch windmill and a public track and even the coast; the first day I got in, three of us biked from the apartment to the beach and it was such a quick, easy ride. There are buses that go straight from our street to the Mission and downtown and basically just all over the City, which is convenient. (There are also lots and lots of things that are not exciting or fun or interesting or convenient, but I’ve been trying to stay upbeat about the move, so there’ll be none of that in this post.)
I’m not unhappy. I’m not. But I’m not happy, either– not yet, at least. I feel like I’m living in an extended vacation rental and am thus reluctant to put my clothes away or develop any real attachments, to either the apartment or the surrounding neighborhood. I feel uprooted and untethered– and a bit detached, as though I’m reading a book about a girl who’s just moved to the City, and I’m turning the pages waiting for significant plot development but instead she’s just turning into a ho-hum drab filler character.
It’s my own doing, of course; Noah didn’t ask me– he gave up hope some time ago that I would ever move here. Clearly I chose to do this because *some* part of me wanted it, but now that I have it, I’m panicking. This isn’t home! None of this feels like home. And not-home is fine and dandy for visiting because at some point you always get to return home, but when you’re in the middle of not-home and the only place to return is more not-home? It leaves one at a loss, when one is me. It leaves one wondering why this was so desirable in the first place and what prompted a willing departure from the home it took so long to find in the first place.
After all, home is more than just the place you hang your hat. I’ve been to a lot of cities, even stayed in a number of them for a good period of time– but as much as I enjoyed them, they were never a “home” because home was simply the place where I ultimately looked forward to returning. But people can be homes, too, and so what’s happened is that I’ve moved away from my place-home to be with my person-home. Because that’s how Noah is for me. As much as I enjoy other people’s company, as much as I enjoy the occasions when I’m on my own– when the socializing and solitude have come to an end… with Noah is where I want to be.
And for now, that’s enough.