Room is my nickname for my roommate. Room is my room's nickname for me. And tonight we had our final roomie hurrah at Shake Shack at Madison Square Park. Granted this is a picture from over a year ago - before Room cut her hair to shoulder length - but you get the picture.
Shortly after I returned from Africa, Room told me she is going to miss my spirit. She went on to say something about me having a sweet presence. The sentiment is mutual. I've been super blessed with an awesome roomie over the past 2 years, and am sad our time together is coming to a close. As I'm heading back to Michigan to finish writing my book, she's heading off to Brooklyn to live with a gay guy, and to continue her pursuit of fashion photography. She'd like to be doing fashion photography full time (and eventually she will), but for now, she primarly shoots weddings. http://blog.shannennorman.com/
Over dinner I told Room I'd like to update my facebook status to say, "Great dinner meeting with my wedding photographer," Room gently reminded me I might give people the wrong impression as well as scare away the 6 men who might interested in me. (She didn't say 6, and to be honest, I'm not certain there is even one, but I'd like believe that out of my 1800 facebook friends there are at least 2 or 3 unmarried men thinking about asking me out.) I explained to Room I already scared away all the men so such a post shouldn't matter. Still, I listened to her wisdom and refrained from making such a declaration to the world.
BTW, if you'd like the dirt on me, simply hold my roommie at gun point or offer her large sums of money (the second method is preferable over the first). She'll have much to offer if I get famous one day and the tabloids come searching for the inside scoop on me. Not only does Room know my quirks - like how I easily get spooked, and scream when I do, she also knows my deepest darkest sins - like how I made a few trips to the tanning bed this past winter (my dad disapproves of tanning beds as much as he does marijuana), and she knows who I shouldn't have kissed Halloween 1 and Halloween 2. Room could also confirm my coke addiction (she'll be sure to tell you it's diet) as well as my liking for Peanut M&Ms, Stella Beer, Jimmy Eat World and certain men. I'll let her fill you in more when you present her with the wad of cash I suggested.
So dinner was late night in the city, but this morning I woke up at a House in the Hamptons - not too far from my friend Thomas. To clarify, we were on separate couches; I wouldn't want to get any rumors started. Although, I will say, Thomas is looking for a wife to help him gain US citizenship. If you are interested in this service opportunity, please let me know. You can read about Thomas and how he helps orphans in Kenya at his nonprofit's website below. If you're a guy, already married, or simply not interested in marrying my friend, you could also help him out by giving to this organization.
Many Hopes is raising the generation of children who will lead with justice and fairness and defeat the causes of extreme poverty in Kenya. http://www.manyhopes.org/
I intended to roll out of bed and hit the road right away, but instead, I enjoyed a cup of coffee and a poolside chat with this gal named Alisha. She's currently reading a book called Blue Like Jazz. I wanted to tell her I've never heard of it ask her if it is any good. But I didn't. Instead we chatted about the dangers of separation of church and alcohol. And then reminisced about the great watermelon slushie shots my church friends and I enjoyed together the night before.
I finally hit the road around 11, but got stuck in traffic right away. Rather than staying in it, I pulled into a prime parking space I chanced in front of the Hampton Library. I then took a couple of hours to leisurely write, and meander about the downtown area. I had no agenda but to simply enjoy being in the moment.
The remainder of my drive home could be a book in and of itself as I listened to a couple of Erwin McManus's old talks from his Chasing Daylight Series and then broke down in the middle of a road upon my arrival back in Queens. I called my Dad. He's no mechanic, but he was able to pray to some help my way, and my car issue was resolved within minutes.
When I did finally arrive back at my place via subway with all my crap, my door men commented on the many bags I had with me. As I stepped out of the elevator, and glanced at the mirror on the wall in front of me, I acknowledged, yes, today I look like a bag lady. Awesome (less than, that is; please take note of the sarcasm.)
I suppose there are worse things to be mistaken for... such as... well, you can read about that in Chapter 21 of my book.
One aspect of living with Room I greatly appreciated is we never kept score. In working with college students I often encounter one person feeling like the other person owes them something. Room and I would simply pitch in, helping each other out, without tallying who cleaned what last. Granted this system works when there is eb and flow to the give and take...
Conversation with Drea & Erwin's CD #2
Pick Me! Pick Me! Hiding in a clothing rack at a store... and Young Life competitions
Evening run in Central Park - oh those ducks
Ted Talk - The Prefrontal Cortex
Americans like choice, but they don't like to choose