On Monday morning I woke up feeling fuzzy and hungover. I was feeling low, even after a successful party and a good meal. Mentally, I was preoccupied. However, I had a typical day of work, writing group, the usual lonely hours in Flatiron between work and writing group.
On Tuesday I decided that despite my emotions (mostly feeling abandoned and sad) I decided to indulge in something rare -- I was going to shop it out. I took the train after work to Soho and stopped in the Nespresso store. Then I walked a few blocks to Barbour.
When people ask me what I want to be like when I'm older, I always see the same thing: a woman with a mature version of my face, wearing a Barbour jacket with a dog tucked under her arm. I see myself ducking underneath a Park Avenue building awning in the rain, and telling my doorman that "I don't think it'll stop today," or something to suggest that we're familiar. Obviously, I never told people this when they asked. The vision is too embarrassing, too rooted in material things. In my mind it's more about having a dog and feeling comfortable wherever I am.
But, you see, I've wanted a Barbour jacket for eleven years now. Several times I've had the money to get one but I've booked trips instead. I opened the door to their shop and twenty minutes later and I was handing over my debit card with sweat running down my face. I left the shop feeling lighter.
Thursday night Alistair and I attended a friends birthday party. His parents have a place on the Upper East side with the most beautiful view of midtown and points south. We left at 9 pm, and went to sleep early like old people.
On Friday one of my new friends invited me to see Dorrance Dance (a modern tap company) at City Center. We grabbed Mediterranean food in Hells Kitchen and rushed over for an 8 pm curtain.
"I secretly love midtown," I said to my friend. "I always agree when people complain because they 'had to go to midtown,' but I actually really like it." The weather was perfect that night. I knew I was in for a sublime evening.
I hadn't been to City Center in ages. It reminded me of the good old days, when I had a dance blog, tons of readers, and I was really committed to being an arts critic. My day job pulled me out of all that, I stopped going to shows, I gave up on being an arts writer or a reporter at all. It's a depressing thought. At some point I had some good momentum, but I took it for granted. The critics I knew are no longer close friends. If I have any great regret in life, perhaps it's this.
Dorrance Dance was clever and electric and definitely worth seeing again at some point. In the dark, with just my program sitting on my lap, I itched for my notebook. I even craved a deadline! How things have changed and all because of me!
Sometimes things just fall apart.
Saturday, the sun shown and we were promised temperatures in the 60s. I put on my new jacket and took a walk with Alistair to run errands. Everyone was out enjoying the sun. We dipped into a market for lunch and bought doughnuts to-go for dessert. Later in the afternoon, I went out and bought a chicken and roasted it for dinner. The recipe I know by heart, so chopping the vegetables, stuffing the cavity felt meditative. We left the windows open and enjoyed the breeze.