Friday, September 2, 2011

525600 Minute Anniversary

When I exited Grand Central Station last night, I walked right past a someone playing bagpipes. It was almost a minute later that I realized, that one year ago, I would not have seen a bagpipe player in the street as normal. I've gotten used to things that would amaze most people. Life in a city with this many people is full of characters and events. And after a while, sadly, you start to take them for granted.

I have been living in New York for one full year, as of today. That makes this the first time I've lived in one city for a full year since I was 17 years old.

This photo is the home I made out of mostly an empty apartment over the course of a year. It feels a bit sparse , nothing inside it is fancy. But it's furnished and decorated, with electric heat and a/c. The walls are covered with memories from before New York.

I don't feel satisfied. I mean, I've made plenty of professional progress. I've been in three Off-Off Broadway shows, the last one paid on a union scale. I've performed the lead role in a short film. I've managed to live and pay for a one bedroom apartment in Manhattan by myself. But it feels a bit empty. Mostly because if someone sat me down and asked me for stories from my year here, I'd draw a blank.

Partially that's because of the competition. When you've push-started a car onto the German Autobahn, nearly gotten killed on a bike in the mountains of Peru, and ziplined off of the Great Wall of China, you become kind of a tough audience for yourself.

That and I think I've spent the vast majority of my time here preparing for the future. Most of the things I've done have been in an effort to get something else later. It feels like a long time since I've done something big for its own sake. I guess when you spend that much time preparing for the future, you don't really notice whatever is happening now.

But I have gained something: a genuine social life. Turns out when you stay in a place for a long time, you actually make friends. Not just people you have one great conversation over drinks and a couple days of hiking with. Friends you see every few days. You get to know their lives, significant others, music tastes, catch phrases. I hardly ever have to say goodbye anymore.

So, yeah, I miss adventure. Life feels a bit static. But it's good to have a simple, reliable set of people you know and trust.

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