Countdown

WordPress helpfully offers blog post topics when you post.  Their latest prompt was ‘describe what you are looking forward to this autumn.’

*Snort.*  That’s a no brainer.  Since August 30th, I’ve been looking forward to November 22nd.  Now there is just a month to go until that Tuesday, and I could not be more…hmm, let me ponder some adjectives.  Ecstatic.  Relieved.  Expectant.

I think you get the idea.

I cannot wait to be in the same place.  While I owe a great debt of gratitude to the people at Skype and MSN for the invention of video chatting, it’s just not the same.  His voice gets garbled, or he’ll look like an impressionist painting.  More than that though, I want to do things like rest my head on his shoulder.  Hold his hand.  Turn and talk to him without having to rely on an electronic ping to get his attention.  That’s just the beginning of the list.

So obviously I’m just plain looking forward to seeing him again, having a chance to do all the things we can’t do now.  But there’s a whole other slew of things I’m looking forward to.

  • Meeting my parents and family: He’s coming to Thanksgiving dinner, and he’s the first boyfriend I’ve ever brought to a major holiday.  The ex wouldn’t even consider going.  I’m convinced he’s going to charm my whole family, and I really hope I’m right.  And finally, I get the pride of having someone at the family dinner table, that I don’t have to be the sad spinster daughter next to my younger sister and her fiance.  Plus, my boyfriend is cool.  I am optimistic that my family will really like him.  He likes his meat rare and full acknowledges that the East River is in fact an estuary.  That’s my dad, the toughest customer, taken care of.  For the rest, I think his English accent should do the trick.
  • Meeting my friends: This one is less about impressing people and more about bringing important people in my life together.  Some people like divisions between groups of friends, I do not.  I like all the people I love gathered in one neat little package.  So I’m hoping to introduce him to some of my oldest friends, and I really hope they get along.  Signs look good–he is chock full o’ trivia and random conversation topics, and he also has an absurd sense of humor.
  • Double (or triple) dating: I’m a teacher, which of course means that 95% of people I work with are in relationship.  In the past, this was a major contributor to my singlehood.  In the present, this means there are some really cool couples to hang out with.  I will make a rather sweeping statement, and say that by and large, teachers are pretty cool people.  They’re kind, working in a field that relies more on altruism than any other job I know of requiring an advanced degree.  They’re interesting, because a) kids are funny, and so make for great stories and b) they have a breadth of knowledge.  They’re also engaging because they work to capture the attention of 34 kids at any single moment.  That takes some sort of magnetic social power.  Sweeping statement no. 2: Teachers tend to choose similarly cool people to be with.  I haven’t met one teacher who I thought was awesome, then met their other half and went ‘meh.’  Even the ones I’ve had raging crushes on have amazing wives/ fiancees.  So now, when the bf comes, I’ll be able to go out with a couple of my teacher friends and *not* be the third or fifth wheel.  I can’t wait for the company, and I can’t wait for the novelty of being in a couple around other couples.  It’s a totally new feeling.
  • Exploring Queens:  I grew up in Bayside, and so I know every store on Bell Blvd.   I can see the whole strip in my head.  But recently I moved to Briarwood, and there are some cool new neighborhoods which I have yet to explore: Forest Hills and Metropolitan Avenue.  I drive down Metropolitan Ave. frequently on the way to the gym or Trader Joe’s and it’s so old school NY.  Although the stores themselves may have changed, it still retains the feel of NY from a bygone era–something you can’t say about many neighborhoods at all anymore.  There’s an old movie theater and some amazing restaurants, tiny shops that are not boutiques, and the cherry on the sundae: Eddie’s Sweet Shop, an old time soda fountain that really is from the 1950’s, the exact sort of place I’ve always wanted to visit.  I could have gone before now, but somehow exploring by myself doesn’t have the same appeal.  Now I have someone to share with.
  • Showing off the real NYC: The bf has been to New York before, but his experience mostly consisted of wandering through Midtown, and any New Yorker will tell you that Midtown is but a small, tourist centered sliver.  In addition to Queens, we can wander through the Village, find an excellent dim sum place in Chinatown, eat pizza at Lombardi’s (ok, that last one may be slightly touristy but totally worth it).  We can shop at Zabar’s and explore Carroll Gardens.  He can get a real taste of what NY is, rather than the tourist taste.
  • Being a tourist in my own city:  He’s only been to NYC once, and so has only done a fraction of the touristy things there are to do.  Sometimes it’s fun to make sure you do the stuff normally reserved for the out of towners.  Take, for example, NY at Thanksgiving.  Any wise New Yorker watches the parade on tv Thanksgiving morning.  We are too, but we’re also going to watch the balloons get blown up the night before.  I’ve never seen the balloons in person, and I have to admit, I’m kind of excited.  Likewise, I have not been to see the Radio City Christmas Spectacular since I was a kid, and now I’m getting to go again.  Radio City Music Hall is still pretty spectacular in itself, and the Rockettes are a New York staple.  This will be pretty fun.
But really, if we did nothing else but stay in for four days, I would be so happy.  All this other stuff is just icing on the fact that for 6 days, we get to be with each other.
28 days now.
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