I’m sorry Sullivan County, but I have been unfaithful.
I just came back from Valentine’s Day weekend in New York City, and I’m still trying to shake loose the relish for something so unlike my day to day.
I love life here in our little corner of the world. But I flirt with life in the big city.
It’s easy to forget how close we are to Manhattan when you’re just trying to keep up with the day to day.
Monday through Friday – work. Friday night – get a pizza if you’re lucky.
Saturday – grocery shop, take the recyclables to the transfer station. Borrow a movie from the library. Plan a playdate.
Sunday – recover from it all.
And then it all starts again.
For a period of four years after my daughter’s birth, the two hours between Sullivan County and New York City might as well have been two days.
We were new parents with time only to work to buy diapers, to change diapers, to train her to abandon diapers.
And then the city came calling. Mid last year I was invited into the city to appear on a TV show.
That one call was all it took to break the chains that bound me to weekend after weekend spent in pursuit of nothing more exciting than a new flavor of yogurt on the shelves at Peck’s.
It’s not an every week thing – not even an every month thing – but after a four-year dry spell, it’s put a flavor back into my life that I forgot existed.
I can eat decadent cupcakes and walk them off between subway stops. I can peruse obscure books and up-to-date fashions.
I can indulge in the love of something foreign, if just for two days.
But it’s not all bad, Sullivan County.
At the end of the day, I’m still that country girl who prefers dirt under her fingernails to smog in her pores. I escape from the city only to rush home into a hot shower and settle in my jammies on a couch in a living room the size of many apartments (and yet on the small side for a “country home”).
This Valentine’s Day, I flirted, but I made sure I came home.