Hi guys! I moved into my first apartment last weekend already! It feels like yesterday, though, I have been keeping so busy.
My fantastic parents came all the way out here (a very long drive) to help me get all settled in and to bring a whole bunch of my stuff (clothes, mostly) across the country. We kept busy this week, going to Ikea and Target, grocery shopping, craigslisting, setting things up. Craigslist is such a rush. That sounds silly but it is the only way I know how to explain it- it is really fun to be able to get exactly what you want for very little cash, to take things off of people's hands that they don't want anymore, and to be sustainable when choosing furniture or even pots and pans. It is like a win, win, win! Plus, winning equals being able to tell your craigslist story over and over, too. Like how I had picked out a queen size black brown Ikea Malm bed frame at the store in Bloomington, planning to buy it when I got here. I found one (partially assembled- perfect for transport) in exactly the color and size I wanted right here in Silver Spring! With a craigslisted bookcase, desk, and even some pots and pans, most of my stuff was cheap and it is all in amazing shape.
Living in an apartment is weird. Unlike many of my friends, I have never lived in an apartment before. I chose to stay in on campus housing all four years of college, and as much as I loved Macalester's residential life, my roommates, and living in Kirk for two years in a row (shoutout to the legend that was #Kirk924 and the amazing human that is Maya), dorm life is not anything like real life. Kirk had many advantages, including being able to roll out of bed ten minutes before class and still be on time because the walk to everything was so short, never having to cook for yourself because the meal plan was mandatory, and living with a whole bunch of your peers, even if you never talked to them. (It is kind of weird and apartment-like that way.) But it also had it's disadvantages, such as that it was old, I shared a bathroom with eight people of all genders, you had to walk downstairs, outside, and then downstairs again to do laundry, my room was tiny, the carpet was kind of suspicious, etc. So living in an apartment is weird for a lot of reasons. The size and newness and physical appearance in general here is weird. It is possible this place has all new carpeting. It is spacious- my room here is bigger than my room at home, and about the size of five of my Kirk rooms. It is gorgeous, recently renovated, all new faucets and a modern kitchen and all that jazz. It is also weird to look at your shower curtain and be like- that is mine, I bought it. I bought the dishes too. Even though I own nothing about this place (though I'm sure I'll pay enough to have owned it in Minnesota several times over soon enough), I feel a sense of ownership over this space like I haven't felt before. It is kind of empowering. It is also weird to live alone, but that won't be true for long. I will have an amazing roommate moving in soon.
I'm excited about the general living situation around here. Silver Spring is an amazing place- it has a bustling, but not crazy, downtown, with street performers, cool restaurants, some upscale and some affordable clothing stores, fro yo, and a fancy library, and it seems like people are out and about every night of the week. I can also walk to the metro in about 10 minutes and ride until I get just a block away from my work- or use it to access anywhere in DC. With its smaller-city charm but big city resources and lifestyle, I think Silver Spring will be perfect for me. (It actually isn't a city at all- it is a geographic area, but it is governed by the county. The east coast is strange, guys.)
Plus, if I don't want to leave the general apartment vicinity (even though downtown is super close), I have a gym and a lounge on the first floor of my building and a grocery store a block away. The gym offers free fitness classes (group fitness is the only way fitness really happens for me) three nights a week and weekends and is open 24 hours.
There is a lot more to write about, but I just remembered that I forgot to eat dinner. I do not have this whole adulthood thing down, yet. I'm probably not going to cook anything. But I will eat my sandwich or whatever on a plate, which I which I will wash by myself and put away, and then I will ridiculously congratulate myself. Because it is not a lie that I went from adulthood zero to sixty (no cooking, no rent, no worries to moving across the country by myself... with lots of help :P- bold moves) and I am so far doing AWESOME.