Turn and Face the Strange

Anytime one moves somewhere new changes are to be expected; things as miniscule as shower water pressure or finding a new Chinese takeout place or drycleaner all become major adjustments. Moving to New York is sort of like a baby step towards moving to a new country, say, England: we speak the same language, but we just do things slightly differently. There have been several things that I’ve had to get adjusted to beside the obvious, things that I didn’t really expect.

For one, we don’t have a garbage disposal, and I never realized how useful they are. It takes so much longer to clean up knowing I can’t just rinse a bowl that may have some food in it – I have to scoop it out first and I mean, really, who can be bothered with that? The apartment also didn’t come with blinds. I guess this is normal for other cities, but neither John nor I have ever had to buy blinds before, they’ve always just been in apartments. Plus, our windows are pretty big which made things more difficult, and now that we have them we can’t install them because, duh, why would we have a drill?

Our apartment is bigger than our old place, and it even has its own separate kitchen – yay! But the fridge is Playskool size – FAIL. This means we have no choice but to put the milk on the rack on the door, which I HATE. While all of our other appliances are full sized, things in New York are generally smaller – the fridge is one example, but so are the sizes of say, cereal boxes or the quantity of most food items at the grocery store. In a way this is nice, because you’re more inclined to buy fresh things. On the other hand, you go through them faster, so you are at the grocery store constantly. And speaking of the grocery store, I have found it impossible to find canned chopped black olives! So strange. I realize that I could just buy regular black olives and put them in the food processor, but come on.

All of this sounds like a lot of complaining, and one might gather that I’m having a hard time adjusting. Wrong! As horrifying as it’s been to not have chopped olives for my tuna salad and showing off my ass to my neighbors through my bedroom window, it’s been balanced by the famous New York energy, the farmers markets, the interesting neighborhoods, and the insane amount of things to do every single day.

I’ve found that things here aren’t really that much more expensive than in DC (well, except rent), it’s just that there are SO MANY THINGS to spend your money on. The vastness of choice in this place is unbelievable, olives aside. You don’t have to wait for Wednesday for the farmer’s market – there’s one every day. Have a peri peri craving? No problem. And once I have a job I will discover all of the boutiques that I have been strategically avoiding, because I desperately need a new handbag.


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