A study in the mundane. I now have a punch card for our neighborhood coffeeshop where a cup of coffee roasted in Oregon sells for $2 in the middle of Manhattan.
There are no Targets anywhere near us, so I found myself this afternoon in the basement of a Kmart a few blocks away shopping for Christmas gifts for Abe. It was crowded and claustrophobic. I started pushing the buttons on a NYC firetruck. A woman next to me asked if there was another, explaining that her 3-year-old son is begging her for firetrucks this year. I had in my hand the only one. She looked completely despondent. I handed her the toy, telling her that our son is only marginally interested in trucks. She asked, "Oh, well what is he into?" She raised her eyebrows when I said, "cooking." We laughed about how good it will be to encourage this in him, that his future spouse will thank me one day. Then she thanked me for the truck, and I wandered away, finding a kid-sized toaster oven and pizza making kit for my boy who really likes to cook.
I called my mom as I waited in line. I paid for my things and chatted with my mom on my walk home through streets that are still harboring enormous piles of dirty snow in the gutters. I had my messenger bag slung around my chest, a Kmart bag in one hand and my cellphone up to my ear with my other hand. If I hadn't been gushing about how much I love it here, how beautiful the central post office is, how I cried when I first glimpsed the Statue of Liberty from South Ferry, and how much I could see myself actually living here, I might have felt like a real New Yorker in that moment. It was a lovely moment, maybe my favorite so far.