Saturday, February 18, 2006

Cold in Chicago

Left work early yesterday at 3:30 and took a Southwest flight from Manchester, NH to Midway Airport in Chicago. The ride went a little bumpy but nothing to worry about after the trip.

The attendant who made the announcements had plenty of jokes, like "When you hit turbulence, shift happens," "I'm going to turn the lights off in the back to make the stewardess prettier" and after announcing a bunch of safety stuff, "Yada yada yada, due to lack of interest, the rest of this announcement has been cancelled."

Unfortunately, we had these two teenage girls behind us blabbing and in front of us, this guy with two kids who played some kind video player without headphones. I wanted to sleep, but instead, I put on my headphones and read a little.

After taking a train, a bus and braving the cold weather of Chicago (not all that bad, really. . .like Boston. . .even though there's something about feeling cold somewhere you don't know like the back of your hand compared to feeling cold in your hometown, even though Chicago gives me the feeling of home more and more), the fiancee and I reached the hotel, pretty much right next to the bus stop.

Check into the hotel at about 10:30. Clerk tells us that there's a Mediterranean just around the corner, but he thinks it closes at 11. We drop our stuff off in the room then run to the restaurant at 10 minutes to 11. The waiter lets us come in, serves us and we get out of the place with nice atmosphere in just a half hour (we got a great idea for having small tables and rolling them out when having guests and parties over for dinner or something like that).

Finally get into bed at about 12:30.

Got up this morning at around 7:30. It's now about quarter of 9.

We need to leave the hotel about 9:30 to make it to our first apartment search appointment. I think we have about five today, then we meet a friend for dinner. I'm expecting to get pretty exhausted by the end of the day.

Before I get off to breakfast and sign off from the blogverse, though, I need to express my ambivalence about this move. There's the usual distaste for the packing, unpacking, rearranging the apartment, working with movers, getting used to a new apartment, etc. etc., but that's not the center of my ambivalence.

Other than that, I'm actually pretty excited about the move. Mainly leaving New England excites me. From my limited experience, I find the people in the Midwest more friendly. The price of living is cheaper. Chicago is bigger and has so many more things to do, especially free things (like being able to see fireworks on Wednesday and Saturday nights during the summer, interesting art installations in the city, the zoo and so forth).

And up until about a week ago, I didn't feel all that bad about leaving Boston. Then I started noticing that I really couldn't spare the time to visit people further from my traveling comfort zone in Boston, mainly because I had a job search to do and didn't want to get all tired and sick from staying out late on the weeknights. I've been getting to like getting into bed at a good time on weeknights. But the weekends are pretty full of the job search and such, too. . ..

So it's not so much an ambivalence about leaving the city of Boston, even though I guess there's a little about missing the short buildings in Cambridge, Somerville and the other suburbs or even the skyline of Boston from Memorial Drive, the kind of view of a city that I wouldn't get in Chicago except if I took a ferry out onto Lake Michigan or hang out on Navy Pier. I guess, in the end, there's just an ambivalence about not having the "ease" to see friends, needing to make new friends and just missing the spirit exuded by the buildings and landscape of Boston.

It's kind of strange, really. I haven't really explored the feeling all that much yet just because it has shown its ugly head, but I need to get down to breakfast now. The feeling will probably make itself more known over the next month or so and give me more opportunity to become more articulate about it.

For now, though, I really need to get that breakfast.


1 comment:

June said...

I completely understand what you mean, Jesse. WHile I was very excited to be moving closer to my family and a special certain someone, there was a distinct pain in leaving the city of Boston and all of those that I had come to know and love over my 4 years there. No matter what, no city will every compare to Boston for me. Other cities are nice, but Boston was the place where I really found myself, and really holds a special place in my heart.