Saturday, September 06, 2008

Blogging should not take precedence over potting soil

Sometimes I wonder if, on some subconscious level, I partly start a bunch of projects and mess up my apartment just so that I can clean it later and feel really accomplished.
For example, right now I have unpacking the vegetables I got yesterday, arranging the flowers I picked yesterday, removing inedible greens from and cleaning the vegetables, sorting out compost, unpacking, and making lunch all started. Blogger has been open for about an hour, but when I sat down to start this post, I realized that there had been potting soil on the carpet for hours, from me knocking over a plant, and I had managed to go to the bank, start all these projects, and check my email before it occurred to me ... wait a minute, before I write in my blog, maybe I should vacuum up that potting soil!
It has been pouring, without letting up, for an hour now. It has been cloudy all day, with rain on and off, and I was kind of hoping that this pouring spell would temporarily let up so I could get in some rush gardening and perhaps go to the store.
It's one of those days where in order to get one thing done, I have to do a bunch of other tasks first. For example, I can't go very far until I buy gas. But in order to buy gas and many of the other things I wanted to accomplish today, I absolutely had to go to the bank. Because I had no cash. Only Canadian change and assorted Euros (also in change.) I spent my last $10 on gas. I am aware of how nice it is that $10 of gas gets me through a week now, as opposed to one trip to work and back. That alone is adjusting in getting used to this new town.
As quickly and as dramatically as my new-home-loneliness set in, it seems to have disappeared. Probably because I went out last night and have a whole social day planned for tomorrow.
In general, I am just bad with transitions. It doesn't matter what I'm transitioning to. It doesn't matter how nice the new situation is and how bad the old one was; I will start missing mundane things. For example, I found myself getting really upset with myself for leaving behind two perfectly good Rubbermaid storage containers. I meant to put them in my car, and I just forgot. And when I was leaving my apartment, I almost left behind a bunch of perfectly useful household items--paper towels, cleaning supplies--thinking, "The new people can use them--They can HAVE them!" in this bizarre urge to somehow sever myself from the old life. As though severance from replaceable inanimate objects symbolized something. When I went back to get a second carload of stuff, my practical side took over--well, almost. It was practical to seize a lot of the paper goods and cleaning supplies for the new place, but there was also an element of, "How could I leave anything behind? How can I leave my old home behind? How can I leave my old life behind!?"
In fact, a former roommate and I were eating pumpkin seeds this week, and we realized that this communal container of pumpkin seeds had been purchased long ago, when classes were still going on, and found ourselves musing on how long ago that had been, how fast it had all gone, and meanwhile this container of pumpkin seeds regarded us without emotion, perhaps considering how much everyone had gone through during its tenure in our kitchen cabinet. And yet it remained the same, just diminishing in quantity a little bit over time.
I'd like to write about the new town, but I'm not sure what to say. My impressions are still scattered. For one thing, I do love that it's a true walking town. And yet, there are still all kinds of impediments to pedestrian life...businesses that have no pathway to the door, so that one has to walk through the parking lot, risking getting flattened by Escalades and other such vehicular monstrosities, the drivers of which aren't looking because they aren't expecting to see someone walking to the bank! Yes, those parking lots comprise a short but treacherous distance!
One of the few places in America, or at least New Jersey, where everyone can walk, yet nearly everyone chooses to drive.
One thing I find interesting and odd about it is that living here has elements of city life, yet also I have to re-adjust myself to things that were habit when I lived in the country. Morristown is very much unlike rural Sussex County, where I grew up, but in some ways it's eerily like going home. I guess it's in the Highlands or something--the natural landscape is very similar to what I grew up with. My neighborhood especially is woodland.
On a side note, I was thrilled when I realized that it's deciduous woodland and therefore, in the wintertime when I will most need sun, I'll have a nice reprieve from the dense shade and it will actually not be horribly dark at my house all the time!
I love woodland, but I miss the sun a bit. Only a bit--I really like stepping outside my door into cool darkness, with the familiar smell of North Jersey forest soil surrounding me.
I hate transitions, and it hit me the other day that my life has been nothing but transition since early May. So four months that were not settled. No wonder I was so neurotic!
Anyway, I'd like to go out and take pictures of the town, too. The architecture is great. It looks like what you see shadows of in other New Jersey towns and cities (Newton and New Brunswick being examples.) One of the rare places where old buildings and old city charm was preserved. It looks more like Europe (though not really like Europe) than say, strip mall-laden state highways. Old churches tower above the shops. When I was out earlier today, I noticed that some old house or something (there's no sign identifying this building) has a very long rectangular reflecting pool leading from its front door nearly to the street. Kind of amazing. I mean, it's unusual and beautiful and I wonder if that's a public building/park or what. And I've driven past it so many times without noticing!
That's why I like walking--you always notice something different, and you notice dozens of things you'd never notice when driving.
I think I'll close this meandering blog post now, give up on the rain letting up, and venture to the grocery store.

1 comment:

Oilbird said...

oooh oooh! I think a photo walk would be super awesome. I need to branch out of flower photos.