Monday, May 10, 2010

City Girl

My parents have always described me as a city girl. While both my brother and I technically grew up in a city, I was born in a far larger one and I guess the three years before we relocated had a pretty profound effect.

At 15, I was the one whose genius plan to escape from any form of hiking on a family trip to British Columbia (I know, I know, who doesn't want to hike in BC?) by quietly refusing to bring appropriate footwear was neatly foiled by my mom loaning me her sensible sneakers and teetering her way through the woods on my KISS-worthy platform heels.

Our family trip to Paris, however? A drastically different story.

Try as I might to blend in with the small-town locals, they called me on it every time. I think it was all the earrings.

Every time I've stepped off the train and into the city to visit friends over the years, I've felt a sense of coming home.

Today when I stepped off the train, I was.

It's been less than a month since we moved into our adorable little third-floor nest, but already my life in the small town seems like ancient history, or a really lengthy dream.

I mean, I know it happened. I've got the newspapers to prove it, but really? Did I really move to the middle of nowhere, not knowing a single friendly face or what precisely I was getting myself into? Did I really stick it out with no social life to speak of to write about giant mutant turnips, 100th birthday parties and bean festivals for two years? Did I really fly an airplane??? haha. Who does that?

This girl, apparently.

And while I will never forget and am hugely grateful for that rare experience, I am so happy to be where I am now. Despite things not turning out the way I might have hoped, and despite the fact that I remain, for the moment, dishearteningly unemployed, I am so excited to be here.

Suddenly, my calendar has changed. Photo exhibits, parties, and dinners with friends have replaced council meetings, donation photographs and interviewing the new minister.

About once a day, when we pass a fruit stand, or explore Chinatown or turn down our gorgeous street, or just sit people-watching from a sun-drenched patio, I turn to Sparta and exclaim, "We LIVE here! We live HERE!"

He just smiles at me, the preposterously happy city girl.

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