It’s been a little over a month since I packed up my bags and moved overseas. To be precise, a band of movers came and packed up everything I own, including my desk, put it all on giant crates, and that’s the last time I saw my earthly possessions. Except for my beloved iMac, which I had the foresight to mail to myself, and which is now in front of me.
So, still awaiting my desk, my pots and pans, my blankie (literally—next time I’m going to send blankets to myself) and perhaps my sanity, I make do with a large cardboard box for a coffee table, another box for an end table, a few bits of furniture that we either bought or inherited with the house. I’m finding I kind of like the minimalist lifestyle. With no furniture to dust, no car to drive anywhere, no fully stocked kitchen to make me feel guilty for not cooking, I’ve more time to write, or to work on writing. (That means do promo stuff for the book that’s coming out in two days. Eeek!)
Oh, and did I mention I decided to paint the almost empty house? I guess that’s my way of making it my own. Plus, I have a thing for paint chips. As a writer, the descriptive names for colors intrigue me. My walls are now Sea Salt colored—did you know sea salt is a mild sort of turquoise? I didn’t either.
Anyway, to give this post a point, I’m trying to come to grips with living in America again. Sure, I’ve visited over the years, but that was to see family, and I didn’t pay much attention to my surroundings. Like the highways. They’re huge, and every intersection has a traffic light, so I’m constantly on guard. And television. There are so many commercials, including some you wouldn’t want to watch with a young child, and now celebrities like Matthew McConaughey are hawking cars and there’s a dead ringer for George Clooney smiling through a Cialis commercial.
I guess the movie biz doesn’t support their celebrity lifestyle, or maybe they just really love their Lincolns and Heinekens.
I’m also struck by the friendliness of everyone here, literally people on the street, or parking lots. At least three times I’ve had people strike up conversations with me while I’m wheeling my huge shopping cart to my car. One guy told me a joke about cats and dogs, seeing as I was buying a cat tree. (I don’t even own a cat. Don’t ask.) Another man had to explain why my shopping cart suddenly stopped moving—the wheels are magnetized to prevent theft, he told me, making me wonder if things are so bad in America that people can’t even afford their own shopping carts. No wonder movie stars have to seek outside employment.
Speaking of employment, I better get busy. That manuscript there on the screen needs editing.