On commuting on other things

We took the plunge this year and moved from the city to the suburbs of NJ.  And by city, I mean NYC. There's this Friends episode when Richard and Monica first meet, and Monica is catering a party at Richard's house, and he talks about how people do this sympathy head tilt when he tells them that he's getting divorced.  This is how I feel sometimes when I tell people in the city that I've moved to the suburbs.  There's this slight gasp followed by a head nod, then a sympathy tilt, ending with a "how are you adjusting?".  As if I've grown a new limb and need to adjust to a brand new reality.  Then, almost in an effort to make me feel good about my new awkward limb, they open their eyes wide and say "well you must be so excited by all that space!"  To which I think "yes I love the space, and I love being further away from you!" Cue my 16 month old daughter saying "byebyeeeee!"

In all honesty, I love the suburbs, the adjustment is fine, in fact it's great. But the commute in and out of the city 4 days a week is annoying.  It's not hard, because nothing in my life is hard, but it's just a real annoyance and a timesuck.  From crowded trains, to delayed trains, to cancelled trains, to long waits, and to Newark Penn (which if you haven't been, is a really special place). The whole process is an annoyance because I could be spending that precious time doing anything else.  I could be getting more work done, spending time with my family, getting things done around the house, working out, the list could go on.  But then I realized if I'm to spend +2 hours a day in a state of annoyance while commuting, I'm going to end up dying earlier.  And that's not good for anyone.  So let's focus on the positive.  There is one thing I could do during this time, and that's to be by myself with my thoughts.  Let's face it, we are the most alone when we are in a crowded place with strangers.  Nobody looks at each other, nobody talks, nobody cares, everybody just wants one thing and that's to get to where they are going.  And while some might look at this as a depressing state affairs where rapid technology has turned us into zombies, I'm going to find the positive.  I'm going to put on my headphones and zone the fuck out, even if that means my face is in someone else's armpit. 

So I realize none of this post involves food or travel (well maybe some travel, but not the fun kind).  But life has evolved to become more than that.  I still think about and consume food (too much).  I cook (much more now with a big kitchen).  I travel (though a bit less).  But I also spend time thinking about and doing other things such as parenting, being a "working mom", attempting to garden, attempting to decorate, becoming a yogi, writing, meditating (someday), reading (someday), finding inspiration, finding purposefulness, being "full".  I don't know what alot of that REALLY means, but I'm looking forward to figuring it out.


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