Thursday, August 9, 2007

Freaking My Face Off

So, my apartment is nearly packed up (just have to tackle Scary Closets #1 and 2, and of course I keep finding goddamn books hiding in every corner), but all in all things are going well. I move to New York in 8 days. EIGHT DAYS! Every day brings me closer to the mother of all panic-attacks.

This is the biggest move of my life. When I moved to Vancouver from Chilliwack, it felt earth-shattering, but it was barely 2 hrs away, and back then I still had a car. I still felt very much like an adolescent when I moved out of the house, but this move to New York feels...scarily adult. Like, I decided this, I implemented it, I made all the plans, I got the funding and the support, and now I'm actually getting on a plane and moving 3,919 km away (I counted). I'm bringing a few books, clothes, whatever I can fit into a suitcase--goodbye, sweet file folders!--and my very surprised cat, Guinevere Anastasia Battis, who is currently sleeping on the TV and has no idea what's in store for her.

To say that I'm freaking out would be an understatement. Matt and I have lived as platonic best-friends and life-partners and old biddies or whatever you want to call it (we just call it 'us') for 2 1/2 years now in our tiny studio apartment downtown, and now we're both going away to separate mega-cities (is metropolises a word?) We're cranky, tired, anxious, upset, excited, all of the above, and every time we try to just chill out and spend a quiet minute together, something always comes up--more to be packed, an appointment, a social function, some move-related crisis, schoolwork, a fire alarm, an exploding bottle of champagne (those last two really happened). I don't think we'll really have even a second to actually THINK about saying goodbye until it really is goodbye at the airport. Maybe that's best. We'll both just turn to jelly once we get on our respective planes.

Because of the crazy border stuff, I still have no official employee number with CUNY, no benefits, no funding, no office, no library card--nothing. I'm getting on a plane with about $50 in my bank account, and my medical coverage sucks ass. I won't see any money from either teaching, SSHRC, or my publishing advances and royalties until September, so I guess I'll be dining on ketchup packages and sesame snaps until then.

This is big. It's so big that I can't even really fit it inside of my brain. But I'm doing it. We're both doing it.



cynical romantic said...

sesame snaps still cost money. go for those free saltine cracker packs instead. also, packets of grape jelly provide a nice dessert. (everything i know i learned from jughead).

Xakara said...

I'm told New York is still one of the few cities where you can eat on charm if you work it right.

I'm not sayin', I'm just sayin'.

;), Good luck on finding a moment together in the midst of the chaos.


Rhona said...


First of all....I just now realized we are the same age. Second of all...I LOVED this post because you bared your soul to us and I freakin LOVE that!

cannot wait to hear all about the move!

Janice Unplugged said...

Excellent post, Jes. Maybe you and Matt will be like Hawkeye and BJ on MASH when BJ refused to say goodbye, and instead, he just wrote out GOODBYE in rocks on the ground, which Hawkeye saw as his helicopter lifted up and away. Do you have any rocks hiding in those closets?

jes battis said...

(Jes goes looking for some rocks)