Yesterday was my four month anniversary of arriving in Portland. Time flies?
Date: November 16, 2014
Days Spent on Project: 636
Location: NW Portland, OR
Person I would have sent it to: Matt.
Again, someone else whose last name escapes me.
I lived on the Upper East Side, right on Second Avenue, in the low 80s for just over three years. Looking back, even though the apartment was incredibly, stereotypically TINY and the apartment building itself was in an odd sense of disrepair, I do look back fondly on those years and that living situation. It was extremely “New York,” with it’s size, disrepair, but also with its proximity to so much that I would learn to accept and embrace and enjoy.
Strangely, though, it was also prime territory for running into people that I had met during my relationship with The Ex.
Matt was a good acquaintance of The Ex; I had met him originally at a Halloween party in 2008– he was dressed as a Geisha and I was dressed as The Sartorialist (no one got that)– which was also the night that I learned that the Scottish Terrier I had grown up with was going to be put to sleep the following day. (I eventually left that party in Harlem by myself, taking a cab to a diner around the corner from The Ex’s place. In the middle of the night, I ate an omelette and cried. The Ex was a little confused by that.)
Two years later, when I lived on Second Avenue, I discovered that I lived across the street from Matt. I ran into him a few times around the neighborhood and the dog park. We eventually decided to get drinks one night to catch up… as if the past years had weakened some kind of relationship.
Learned a lot that night. Like a lot of my conversations with people met during my time with The Ex, we eventually wound up talking about him. I remembered that my time with The Ex hadn’t been so closed off, like I thought it was. I guess I started to learn- or believe- what really brings so many gay men together and what creates bonds between friends.
I want to put those years of my life behind me, while acknowledging that I grew up a lot during 2007-9. I grew up even more after that relationship ended, I guess. It’s so funny how letting people in is really the catalyst for so much of our identity, experience, and evolution as adults. And humans.
Music I listened to while sewing: I’m listening to Kaskade today, after having spent almost all day with their song “A Little More” on repeat. I’m sure my neighbors love the ruts I get stuck in.
Thoughts/Feelings behind the block: After being super responsible last night, coming home from work at 6, walking the dog, eating dinner, and cleaning up some of the apartment, I went to bed at 10:30. I was up until 3am, thinking of all the things I could be– and should be– doing.
I re-arranged my apartment. My sewing and drawing desk is now INSIDE, out of my sunroom, so I can sew and draw in a heated space. I positioned my desk to face outside of one of the main windows, so I can stare at Portland in the distance while I work. Why I originally chose to place my desk with it’s back to this view… I don’t know. I feel very Carrie-Bradshaw-esque, with the exception of not seeing the Upper East Side outside my windows.
Again, when you’re sitting in bed at 3am, everything just seems to make sense, doesn’t it? It’s so easy to plan and know what you want and fear and hope. I will say, one of the great things about being somewhat more lucid and clear-headed here is that my mind doesn’t always shut off easily. Maybe that’s why I liked the anti-lucidity and foggy-headedness; it was easier to shut down when I wanted to.
I named my hypothetical theater company last night. I flagged several books on Amazon that I want to read to help with The California Project. I hunted for Alexander McQueen artwork so I could put a stamp on my space at work (no luck). I made plans for quilting fabrics and colors to use. I updated paperwork for my wardrobe crew, and the work they’ll start doing this week for our Christmas productions. I decided I would volunteer to design any– if not ALL– of the productions next year here just to keep my brain going and myself busy. I decided I have to figure out a way to get back to New York at some point.
I made a plan to find someone to date here. I decided I wouldn’t feel so guilty about not getting to the gym more than once or twice a week here. I planned how to pay off my student loans.
There’s a part of me that wants to be more social here. I want to explore Portland and discover why everyone seems to love it here… but then I sit down with myself and I realize there are so so so many things that I want to do and take care of and accomplish. Being in New York, with its 24/7 push-push-push, I was having a hard time sitting myself down to tackle these things. Here, with its slower pace, it seems right to just relax and focus on what I want to do.
That sounds so anti-social.