Monday, August 29, 2011


I didn't take the threats of Hurricane Irene seriously at all until Saturday morning. The Boy had stayed over and it was my turn to go and get us coffee from Starbucks. 

I walked to my local one to find that it was closed. Undeterred, I walked to the next one to find it shut too. As far as I am concerned, no Starbucks means "the end of the world as I know it" ... hence when I started to panic.

I went home, empty handed, to find the Boy ready to leave my place as the MTA was about to shut down all public transport and his brother had to be evacuated from Long Island and stay with him in the Bronx.

We both set off on our own grocery missions. Me to Gristedes for ham, bread, cans of tuna and inexplicably (although it seemed like a good idea at the time) a jar of artichoke hearts. Him to Fairway for his favorite roast chicken and a baguette (who's the French one in this relationship?!). I also made a pit stop at the liquor store which had the longest queue of all. I felt an extra pang of love for my fellow New Yorkers then - we may have been facing an indefinite blackout but none of us were prepared to do it sober and conscious :)

After the Boy left, I met with a bunch of my friends for a boozy brunch that lasted until the evening, while the rain poured outside. CS and I had already agreed that she would stay with me for the weekend so we went home and pooled our "groceries" together which by this point included what I had bought earlier and her snazzy selection of cheese and biscuits, as well as no less than six bottles of wine between the two of us.

We woke up the next day hungover but surprised to find a clear sky and a gentle breeze sweeping the Upper West Side. We managed to find the only bar/restaurant open that day in our neighborhood and met some more friends for yet another long brunch with bottomless Mimosas.

Many areas of New York State were badly affected by the storm and I hope that everything will be repaired soon. But I can't help but being amused by the reaction of people in the City. I have since read that during this whole experience, Whole Foods had sold out of organic hummus first or other "luxury" products, before any of the other life saving things people might need.  Manhattanites (me included) can be so out of touch with reality sometimes!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

The Boy

By now, you must have noticed how much I have mentioned the Boy in my posts as we have been spending so much time together.

While I initially called this whole thing "The Great Dating Experiment", I no longer feel (and have not for a while now) that it is an experiment at all. It did start out as a concerted effort to let someone in, even just a little bit. It was about me trying to trust a man for a change after being hurt so badly a couple of years ago. It was about giving a chance to someone lovely, very interesting, available and who seemed to want to get to know me. And I guess it was also about giving myself a chance to be happy.

But we are past that point. The Boy simply has never let me down, a fact that continues to surprise and amaze me. Of course, we have only been together for three months, it is still very early days and neither of us knows where it's heading but we are enjoying the present. But it feels real.

After 5 years of being "technically" single but tangled up in dysfunctional trysts, I didn't think I was actually capable of being in a normal, straight forward relationship again. With all the good things and not so good things that come with it.

I promise that I will never become a smug "coupled up" person. I have too much life experience to ever take it for granted or expect that it will last forever. I also would never jeopardize the wonderful friendships I have here. My priority is to ensure that I spend as much time as I always have done with my adopted family, the dear friends who are the bedrock of my life, while still nurturing my burgeoning relationship with the Boy. Of course something had to give and so between my friends, the Boy and the gym, I'm afraid the gym had to go! Tough choice but someone had to make it ;-)

Right now I just feel incredibly lucky that I am able to balance everything and get the best of both worlds. To have met someone who likes adventures (cultural, intellectual, physical) as much as I do, someone who is not threatened by my ambition or thirst for life, who does not want to change my life but adds to it, is a wonderful icing on top of what was a pretty tasty cake in the first place!

But (and there is always a "but" in this crazy City) nothing is ever as straight forward as it seems. I remember writing a while ago that everyone here is slightly damaged and it remains a true statement - between his emotional baggage and mine, things are not always easy. But it's worth it. And regardless of what happens, I hope I will never regret trying.