Thursday, November 13, 2014

Moving and Settling

I think I'm finally settling into my new apartment here in San Francisco. Which is amazing because moving is hard and doing it three times in three months pretty much killed me with a bunch of stress. Well, not the most recent move - I was so eager to get out of there.

Still, it's surprising how much moving disrupts little routines.  When I moved to my new place, I kept misplacing things because where I had gotten in the habit of putting them (table by the door) was no longer a viable option. Things had changed position, and it's funny to become of aware of how I was subconsciously setting up the kitchen. Spices were in the Ethiopia location. Condiments were placed where they are in my parents home. My bed is the same relative corner of the room as it was in Huruta, my bathroom stuff divided into drawers to match my childhood home.
Really like corner desks too.

It's kinda weird, I always assumed I would place things where they were easily accessible. Comparing what I was doing with small thing and what my new roomies were it was easy to see that what I saw as 'easily accessible' was actually just 'comfortable and familiar'.

It reminded me about one of those PC manuals I got before leaving for Addis. It's the little disruptions in your routine that make you go crazy and tire you out, because routines exist so you don't have to use all your brain power. Activities are automatic. And then you disrupt that and you have to pay hyper attention to what you're doing and you're all volatile and you blow up at an Ethiopian child trying to hold your hand.

Or in this case, try not to slam a cabinet door when you see that the spatula is in the knife drawer and harshly state the right place to a roomie.

I did mention that Peace Corps taught me patience, right?

Anyway - I feel like this is my first stable place in a while.  Yeah, I was pretty comfortable in Huruta but I also knew it was only for two years. And yeah, I don't know enough about where I'll be in the next year to the point I'm worried about getting a magazine subscription (maybe I'll get a job in SF next Fall, maybe not). But still, I can decorate the walls. I can add personal touches. I can set things up the way I want to and not have to worry about having only one outlet in a room. I can do things I want to do I haven't been able for awhile - bake, take a long shower, buy vegetables other than tomatoes.

Yet I want more. I want to start building up collections - I never truly got to replace all the books that where water damaged while I was at university. Where would I put all those books? Where would I put all the DVDs I want to buy, solid reminders of favorites and easy, big screen access to what I want to rewatch? Where can I put all the little items I want to collect, costume parts and baking pans and recipes and souvenirs? Not really here, but I'm gonna try anyway.

This is my first real (American) place to do this. I'm excited.


Annalisa Crawford said...

Good to hear you're settling in. Enjoy your new place :-)

Post a Comment