I've been here for about ten days now, and I'm surprised how comfortable the transition has been. This is why I moved so quickly, I suppose, from commenting on the setting-up process to writing about work. I feel surprisingly even-keeled...
I've established quite quickly what it feels like to move through this lovely big apartment, with its surplus of space - to cook here, work here, sleep here. It does feel like home, and I can't imagine wanting to move for quite a while (thank goodness!). It has a coolness to it that I haven't lived with before - the colours are very light...of the walls and the upholstery on the furniture I chose, and the birch and pine I ended up preferring in the living room. I suppose it's a serene almost-minimalism, and I'm seeing the effects of that on my psyche. And I like them.
So my main living space looks like this:
I've even grudgingly gotten used to the carpet and tile!
I've used that big bookcase behind the sofa as a room divider, and behind it lies my office...so minimal that the only thing in it is my desk! Plenty of room for the mind to roam.
And my bedroom is similarly serene - vast expanses of light terracotta-coloured walls, punctuated by a few framed pieces of art. That's all. The same is true of the guest/TV room. There is a marked lack of clutter.
And here is my funny bathroom, with its big triangle of a bathtub:
I've not lived with quite such an aesthetic before - things have always felt heavier. This is having a palpable - and positive - effect.
And what of living here, in Scary City? Well, it's not as scary as I had imagined it to be. In fact, I hereby re-christen it City with Potential. I've been taking advantage of what is good about it - opportunities to be outside, and in water. I've been using a shockingly extensive network of bike lanes to get around - have only had to use public transit once, when I was buying large items. I've been munching on crepes at the farmer's market, and stocking up on produce there. I've found a cafe I feel at home in, and a bar I think I'll like. The other day I had a drink with a colleague, and yesterday he invited me to come along with him as he cycled the long route to the university - I'd wanted to be introduced to this back way in, since I plan to ride to work fairly often. We rode, in part, on country roads, past pastures with grazing horses (and llama!). This will be a treat, this ride. A marvelous way to begin and end a day.
And so, life feels pretty good. When it doesn't, it is mostly because of anxiety...I have stacked my plate with far too much for the next few months, and I can feel the pressure building. But that's nothing to do with this place, and in fact this place - and my home in it - will provide opportunities for respite from it.
I am not lonely, not at all - the people I talk to in Home Area keep expecting me to be. But as an only child, I'm very accustomed to time with myself. Sometimes I get bored with myself, with my own thoughts - especially when they are like a broken anxiety-record. But lonely? No. In fact, though I miss some people very much - R, of course, and Mr. K, and A - I am finding it quite calming to have little to do beyond my work, and few people to see. There was almost too much going on in my life before...
So, yes. City with Potential.