Today, as I walked out of the Times building onto Spring Street, a text zazzed my phone.
"Hi Sasha, we're all moved in and the kids started school yesterday. We'd love to see you. Can we take you out for dinner soon? Maybe after a tour of Brooklyn? K x"
Back in late July, I didn't tell all of my friends that I was moving to Los Angeles. An Instagram post did some public work, a tweet did more, but loved ones outside those cloverleafs weren't necessarily going to know what was going on. I couldn't think of the right way to announce something so big and weird. Almost fifty years spent in New York and then, suddenly, ship it all to LA. Boom, done.
There's no sturdy explanation for why I didn't just send an email to everyone in my address book. The reasoning — which I am reconstructing, unreliably — emerged from my suspicion that a cross-country move was too hard to talk about. The transition from one place to the other felt both idiosyncratic and cosmically inevitable, which is a way of saying it would lead to even more rambling and tangential explanations than usual. "Only announce small or simple things" was my crude mantra. Also, I had been thinking of moving to L.A. for at least five years, and somehow the idea of potentially over-announcing the decision felt like a jinx. I was just going to watch the moving company leave and get on the plane and then talk about it somewhere, at some point. Like here.
Half an hour after I got the text, I was sitting at Gold Room with my friend, Joni. She had brought her daughter out to CalArts and stayed a few extra days. We talked about marriages come and gone and unrealized, and then drove a few blocks to Mohawk Bend. And then the spatial thing happened again. Because I don't yet have a car and am still internalizing the spaces around me, I am constantly discovering that points my mind has placed in two different neighborhoods are just a block apart.
When we said goodbye, I failed to find any LaCroix at the local Whole Foods — which isn't a Whole Foods but I'm never going to learn the name so fuck it, it's Whole Foods — and I felt a slight sense of failure. Then we walked outside. The heat had receded behind a low wind. I said, not for the first time during our night, "I love it here."