Last spring, right after Rob and I got engaged, I made mango popsicles and my friend Tina and I sat on the back deck of my parents house with my family, watching the sun set and the boats go by. Rocky sat next to me, trying so hard to get a bite, or maybe even a full popsicle of his own. The grass was green and the air was warm and flowers had bloomed already. My new ring felt so bizarre on my finger, and I probably spent hours admiring it over the course of those first few months. I was still working at my old job and knew that I had a move to plan, but there was also a wedding now at the forefront of my mind and I wasn't sure what step to take first.
We talked about the wedding (it was still just this abstract idea, which is so weird to me now because it's happening in three weeks and the cake baker is emailing me to confirm that we're doing the textured frosting with little pearls around each layer) and my eventual move, and at that time there were no real details--it was just so fun and exciting to imagine what life might be like in Minneapolis.
Most days I stay home and work--I talk to my mom and write blog posts, try to read or muster up a short story or an essay, fold laundry, plan dinner, work on the blog some more, etc. I usually get a lot done. Sometimes I don't. But I always spend a lot of time alone.
I made a list of errands and set out to spend Tuesday morning away from our apartment. An almond milk latte at Spyhouse, where I would write at least ten thank-you notes. Then to the post office, where I would buy stamps for those thank-you notes. After that, to Mall of America for false eyelashes at Sephora, Victoria's Secret liquid eyeliner, and a BCBGeneration dress that was not on the list, but was on sale. I found myself deep in conversation with people working in each of the stores, which is something I never did before moving to Minneapolis. I did some grocery shopping at Trader Joe's (another favorite because the cashiers are always so chatty) before heading back home for lunch and a cup of tea.
As I walked away from Spyhouse toward my car, pulling my jacket closer around me in the 22 degree April morning, I thought about warm spring nights in Virginia and how complicated it is that I still don't always feel as though I live in this city. There's so much to see and do and eat (and I've befriended so few people) that I often feel like a stranger here, even after eight months. But still, I love this place.
When we talk about our next move and the possibility of being within driving distance of all of our friends and family once again, it feels like everything is falling into place, but then we both sit on the edge of our bed and feel sad at the thought of leaving Minneapolis. This place has been good to us, and even if I don't always feel it, I like that it's my home. But I guess by now I have a lot of homes.
Will we leave little bits of ourselves everywhere we go?
This post is in response to the following prompt: "Write about a memory of a Popsicle." (From Old Friend from Far Away, page 209.) If you've written a response of your own, please share it below in the comments!
P.S. Visit this post for future prompts.