Wednesday, January 2, 2013

On Life in New Jersey, Honestly (Pt. II)

I wrote "On Life in New Jersey, Honestly" in September, when I was having a really difficult time adjusting to living here. But somewhere along the way, in the last few months, something changed. It was subtle, at first, but it happened.

As I drove to D.C. at the end of November, I found myself running low on gas. As I approached the Delaware state line, I thought to myself, "It sure is cold out. I should get gas before I leave New Jersey so I don't have to get out of my car." And that's exactly what I did.

Here in New Jersey, my car's brakes are getting a workout (because the drivers here are still crazy & I'm still not), & my left turn signal is atrophying from lack of use. I occasionally still miss my jughandle, which sends me a mile or so out of my way before I can turn around, but on the streets I frequent most, I know exactly where to turn right so that I may then turn left.

Nathan & I recently tried out the Bagel Station, a Red Bank "bagelry & java house" that a local recommended as being the best in town. We went early on a weekday on a day he had off, before I started work. Faced with a looming menu board full of breakfast options, I made my decision: "Can I get pork roll & cheese on a sesame bagel?" Not bacon, not sausage, but pork roll. Not for a blog experiment but just because I wanted it.

Little things, but they add up to something big: I'm getting used to life in New Jersey. I sometimes say, "The worst part about living in New Jersey is telling people you live in New Jersey" - which means that the place itself isn't as bad as the reputation it has.

It's OK here. I'm OK here. And life is good.
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