Snuggle Time on the futon. Cuteness.
I also realized that after 4 years, the Capital Region feels like home. That I'm happy to be living here-- it's a good fit. I finally know where to get the best sushi, or sandwich, or brunch. I know which grocery store is cheapest, what Target is the best, what time of day to avoid certain parts of the city, who makes the best coffee.
I also really like living in Troy. I do miss Albany, being in the center of everything. But I don't miss the traffic, and the character-less malls. If it's lacking anything, Troy certainly isn't missing character. The hipsters, the farmer's market, the beautiful buildings, coffee, pizza, and fried chicken.
Julie enjoying chicken 'n waffles after a long bus ride.
The Flying Chicken, Troy, NY.
And as much as I want to gush about my old friends, I have really great new ones, too. Patrick and I threw a costume party last night, and brought together his friends and my friends, old ones and new ones. And it was FUN. That's really the best. You know you have a good crowd when they all mix and mingle and mesh like that. Magical.
The "new" friends :)
Three people at the party last night were brand new to the Albany area, and since many of us others in the room were also transplants, I think we tried extra hard to make them feel welcome. Because we remember that starting over is hard. Whether it's your first semester at college, or first month in a new city, many lonely days are going to precede the fun ones, and sometimes it can feel like nothing will ever change. And then suddenly, four years later, you will pause for a moment in a room full of costumed, laughing, hugging, dancing friends and think to yourself, "I finally know enough people to throw a party!"
So, to my friends, old and new, thank you.
Julie, Marisa (City Mouse), and I...Then:
May 2006, SUNY Binghamton
October 2012, Troy NY
(P.S. We're wearing costumes. We don't normally look like this.)
And to Patrick... thank you for always being such a good sport for my schemes ;)