I am sitting in my sublet (yes, mine, she is not here, and she has moved most of her stuff out, mine is such a lovely word) on a comfortable couch on my computer watching Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King on TNT. Legolas just toppled an Oliphant on his own. It is a good, if silly, thing.
Last night I moved to the UES (Upper East Side, for those of you who asked), and I am pleased to be in my own space. My landlord was still here last night, and she slept on the couch (I love beds, I forgot how much I love beds), but we talked a bit before we went to sleep. She teaches math at an all girl’s middle school near here, and basically her students are little Blair Waldorfs in training. She says that money is no object for these girls but that many of them are fairly screwed up because their parents (designers, bankers, generally self-important people with lots of money) don’t pay their kids much attention. This isn’t the case for all of the girls, but more than a few fall into this category. I actually saw my landlord and her students as I was walking to the museum this morning: lots of little middle school girls in plaid skirts that seemed to have gotten a little shorter, and most were wearing very Blair Waldorfesque headbands. This is a whole new world into which I have entered.
Anyhow, my landlord is fairly friendly, I’m glad we got a chance to talk before I moved into her apartment. I promised her numerous times that i would keep it clean and new and lovely. However, I wasted no time unpacking my suitcases. Last night my landlord was snoring rather loudly and despite my exhaustion I couldn’t sleep, so I went into her closet and unpacked my larger suitcase. I unpacked my other suitcases this morning before work, and am now more or less settled into the space. I am lacking hangers, however, so my clothes are folded on shelves rather than hanging–I’d like to remedy this as soon as possible, for the wrinkles my work dresses are no doubt accumulating are making me unhappy.
The apartment, however, makes me extremely happy: high ceilings, newly rennovated, new appliances, spacious lots of light. I just took a few pictures of the apartment and the inside of the building, so you can see for yourself. Here they are, click on the thumbnails for larger images:
I’m still working on the final bits of settling in: buying groceries, getting hangers, etc., but I hope to be more or less entirely settled by the end of the weekend. Hopefully I can start cooking a few things soon!
Today was also my first day of actual work. We had a bit of a rocky start due to our not being authorized to access our files on TMS (The Museum Service, just to remind you) and our not being connected to the printer. However, once the kinks were knocked out we were able to get cranking. The work is a little mundane: going through old documents in files and verifying that the information checks out in the file and on TMS. We’re also reorganizing the documents in the file andcleaning up some of the language in TMS. If we have trouble verifying information via the files in front of us we head down to the library to do some research. I’ll be popping down tomorrow to verify some publication information regarding the last file I looked at today. The files themselves are object files, each containing all the documents the museum has pertaining a specific object; for this project, all the objects are drawings. Occasionally the project gets interesting when I stumble upon amusing artist comments. Each artist is asked to fill out a sheet with questions regarding his or her work, and sometimes their answers are hilarious and/or sad. One artist, who I did not know, stated that his artistic goal was “to create a new paradigm in painting.” Another artist, when asked to describe the subject of work, scrawled a smiley face on the page and stamped “TOP SECRET” above the smiley face. When asked the same question about another of his works in the collection, the artist said: “It would be interesting if I filled this space with words but it would be more interesting if I left it blank.” Ah, artists.
Diana is also a fun supervisor. We spent the first fifteen minutes of the morning talking about New York as it was in 1983, when Diana moved here–as you can imagine, it was mostly about how the city had changed and been cleaned up. Around 1:00 Diana shouted at us to go to lunch, which I spent grabbing a quick ricotta tartine at Le Pain Quotidien and then running to the grocery store for round one of stocking my refrigerator. Around 4:30 Diana grabbed us and pulled us to the upstairs conference room, saying: “They’re giving away free gift bags! Let’s go get them!” We were able to snatch the last few bags and I am glad that we did: white Donna Karan tote bags with a large tube of scented moisturizer and some perfume. Win!
After work I went home to unpack the groceries, then headed down to St. Mark’s Place to meet Trisha Baga for dinner. Trisha is an artist who studied at Cooper Union and is now in the Video and Media Arts MFA program at Bard. I went to Pine View with her, and have always been a fan of her work. She’s headed to Bard on Saturday (the MFA program only has classes during the summer), so we decided to meet up before she left the city for the summer. We went to this amazing restaurant called The Hummus Place (website says they’re going to have an Upper East Side location soon! Yes please!) where we ate lots of hummus and pita. We talked about art and Pine View and our current lives and later her friend Philip joined us and we talked about art and stuff some more. We also drank the most delicious mojitos. They tasted the way they looked: green and fresh and swimming with mint. Also, they were slushy, and slushy is always positive. I’m not a huge mojito fan but these were delicious.
I think St. Mark’s Place is adorable and fun and full of great people watching and I want to try every restaurant there. Especially between 3rd and 2nd avenues, totally a bizarre, New York place.
After dinner I headed back uptown, grocery shopped part two, and came back to my apartment around 9:30 to shower, collapse, and write this blog. I have to admit I feel a little guilty when I tell people I am staying on the UES: It is so swank, kind of Disney-ish in an odd way, very much not where I thought I’d be living when I found out I’d be here this summer. It is a different part of New York than where I go to socialize, but I have to admit, the proximity to work is awesome. I’m sure after living here for a bit or so I will find the restaurants and cozy parts of the neighborhood, and make it my own. And the LES (Lower East Side) is a mere fifteen minute subway ride away when I want it!
Exhausted, time for bed. Not sure what I am doing tomorrow night, but the rest of the weekend will be filled with a park day in Brooklyn on Saturday and a Tony Awards watching party on Sunday. Speaking of which, I leave you with this affirmation of both mine and my sister’s existence, which is displayed right across the street from my apartment: