I hate the plane ride from JFK to LAX. It is entirely too long, there are inevitably old ladies coughing on you and babies crying, and you just want to get home already. (This is Miriam by the way. Just in case you couldn’t tell from the crabby complaining.)
That’s right… I said it. Home.
When I flew to New York last week I assumed that I would feel giant pangs of regret for ever leaving in the first place. Instead I discovered that all those things people who don’t live in New York say about New York–all those things that when you live in New York you’re like, no, that’s not true, this place is amazeballs–they are actually true. Don’t get me wrong, I adored seeing my friends. But the city is wealthy and status-concsious and cramped, both physically and emotionally. I had a story to write and I tried to go to my favorite bookstore to do it, and I couldn’t, because there were so many goddamn people talking so goddamn loudly around me, I couldn’t breathe.
Even Ellyn is having second thoughts about the city:
The colder it gets in New York, the closer we get to changing the name of this blog to LAX.com. I’m not the most appropriate candidate to represent the JFK. I have a love/hate relationship with NYC, and I’ve spent the last ten years of my life vowing to move to California. But New York keeps roping me back in. First, I stayed because I signed a lease. Then my mom moved West, so I rebelled and signed another lease. Then my long-distant boyfriend moved here, and now I think I’m stuck until he gets sick of it or one of us gets an amazing opportunity on the “Left/Best Coast.”
Whenever I have a bad day, it ends in me crying and making Shaun promise we’ll move to California soon. He thinks it’s impractical to just leave now, but he said eventually we will. However, it’s possible he just wants me to stop being so dramatic. Boys never know what to do when girls cry.
To be clear, there is plenty to dislike about LA too. As my writing teacher’s husband put it, “everybody in LA is in their own movie. And if you’re not in their movie, they’re not really talking to you.” But it’s up you to create your movie, and that can include a whole bunch of really smart, adventurous people. And you can stay at home and write all day because you can actually afford a beautiful apartment or house with a dedicated writing room. Or you can go hiking. Or play Taboo and drink wine with friends. Mainly, there is a sense here that you can do whatever you want, so long as you put your mind to it. And nobody judges you based on the book they see you reading on the subway.
Maybe Ellyn said it best: Something about California in general tugs at my heart strings though. It’s more laid back, I bet people don’t push each other around on the street (because everyone is in their car?) and sunny winters probably make people much happier. At least that’s what I imagine when it’s sleeting in NY.
I for one am perfectly happy to shelve my designer winter coats for this lifetime.