As the season changes from autumn to winter in New York City, the sun starts setting at 4:30pm and the temperature drops to 40 degrees. Leaves go from green to yellow to red and brown and eventually cluttering park roads and sprinkling city streets. I dig out my thermals and long underwear, all the while daydreaming of what my days will be like in less than three weeks. I look forward to a time when the biggest decision I have to make in my day is which mountain to climb, or who do I want to hang out with, or what kind of satay (Indonesian BBQ) would I like for dinner. For now, I oscillate from daydreaming to stillness, an attempt to savor the beauty of change happening around me.
I move out of my apartment 11 days from now and depart the country 5 days later. I haven’t begun to pack up my belongings. My friend Sarah renewed the lease for my apartment so I’m leaving my bed, dresser, bookshelves, and kitchen appliances for her. All I have to pack really are my clothes, linens, books, files, and travel gear–all of which I’m hauling up to my mom’s house to store in her attic while I’m away. I’m staying with friends in the city leading up to the day I fly out. These next couple of weeks will be exciting and eventful as life gains momentum.
As for work, my editor wants to spend a day with me visiting religious sites we embarked on during the first months of us working together. Our time working together is an important chapter in both our lives and I’m blessed to have a terrific relationship with him. I do have an assignment to finish with work, perhaps my last one before I leave, and I hope to finish before Thanksgiving this week.
Speaking of Thanksgiving, I’ll be at my mom’s house in Westchester, about an hour north from NYC. I’m training it up Wednesday evening. My middle brother is driving down from Massachusetts (where he attends college) and we’ll spend time together as a family. I have another younger brother who’s in high school. I’m the oldest child out of three and only girl. I’ve spoken to my brothers a little bit about my trip and how much it means to me, but I’m not sure they understand or see it the way I do. My brothers were both born in the US so their connections with our heritage differs from mine. But, that doesn’t mean we can’t give thanks together for our presence in each others lives. This Thanksgiving in particular will be sweet and bountiful.