This must mean I've finished my first year here. So what I really want to know (and undoubtedly you do, too) is this: what have I learned?
Here, in random order as they occur to me in my caffeine-deprived state, are 10 things I've learned from my year of living solo in New York:
- How to ride a horse. Although this had been on my bucket list for years, it wasn't until a friend and colleague nagged me incessantly that I finally signed up for lessons. I'm definitely not a natural talent, but I'm improving. Hopefully I won't lose it all over the course of the summer
- How to meet strangers in the laundromat. The laundromat is a great place to meet people. Seriously. I picked up my hairstylist there.
- That when it comes to corresponding with people I have great intentions but horrible follow-through. If it weren't for Facebook and email, I would've lost touch with just about everybody I know who doesn't live in New York. (I always knew this one, but really saw it in action this year.)
- Fry cakes, when done right, are vastly superior to donuts.
- That trusting the universe will get me much farther than pretending I have all the answers.
- Also, when I shut up and listen to them, I have good instincts. And that trusting my instincts sometimes requires counterintuitive actions.
- How to make a terrific mustard-maple chicken. Heck, before, I didn't even know New York had a maple industry. Sad, but true.
- That I'm okay by myself. I miss my boys, but one of the things this year has required of me is that I function externally rather than internally. I may often be socially awkward, but I'm still social and I think this is strangely easy to lose sight of this when we're part of a cohesive unit.
- The pronunciation difference between Keuka and Cayuga is this: one has a voiceless velar plosive (k-sound) in the middle, while the other does not.
- And finally, I have discovered that I can do, or find a way around, pretty much anything I decide to take on. Sometimes it requires rational approaches; sometimes it takes the help of friends; sometimes it takes a little more hard work than I had budgeted but at the end of it all, the goal is met. (Or modified. What it isn't is abandoned--which may have been the hardest lesson of all)
Now, on to summer in Michigan.