i’ve arrived in seattle.
There is something very different about arriving in a place you’re just visiting and arriving in a place you think you might be living for 5 years or so. Everything gets judged, filed, every impression is stronger, and the things you know will be close to become so important. Do I really like this apartment? Where is the nearest grocery store? Is this really a nice campus? Will I be able to handle the rain? The clouds? Why is it sunny today? How much longer will it be sunny?
It’s thoughts like these that have made this first day sort of a mental and emotional marathon for me. Here’s basically what my day has involved so far:
1. Arrive at apartment building at 10am to sign lease that begins tomorrow. Have no quarters to feed the meter. Jog over to coffee shop to beg for change. Experience excruciating pain in thighs because you thought it would be a good idea to run a couple of miles two days ago after not exercising for two weeks. Feed meter. Limp into apartment building and fill out paperwork. Visit apartment to find it is still trashed–the lease doesn’t start until tomorrow, so they have until midnight to clean things up. Be suprised at size of apartment, but remind yourself that (in spite of strong personal inclinations) you’re living alone. Discover that waterbeds are not allowed. Sigh, and go to move your car before the meter runs out.
2. Park car in a free spot 15 blocks from campus that is tow-away from 4-6pm. Plan a 2pm meeting with advisor. Eat lunch at student union.
3. Meet advisor at 2pm. Many exciting projects are offered. Try to pick one to start work on by tomorrow at 11am. Try to arrange for building key, employment papers, budgeting forms, computer accounts. Realize that it’s 3:55pm.
4. Run/walk/limp 15 blocks to your car, reaching it at 4:05 unticked and untowed. Drive aimlessly looking for overnight parking, give up and buy a parking pass 4 blocks from apartment.
5. Limp some more to some random building and plug in your laptop. Post new pictures of UW on gallery and try to determine direction of your life for duration of Ph.D. program.
So this is the point that I’m at now. Maybe it was the 13-hour drive from the Bay yesterday, or the fact that I’ve been effectively on vacation since the beginning of June, or the stress of moving to a new city, but in any case I’m utterly exhausted. And the best part is that I can’t go to my apartment until around midnight, so no sleep until then unless I get a hotel again (and I’m just too cheap for that).
So hopefully I’ll have some pictures of the apartment up tomorrow sometime. Whee.