Sunday, July 10, 2016

My Next Chapter (As Kevin Durant Calls It)

Two weeks ago, I packed my entire life in five suitcases and moved across the country. It was hard saying goodbye to Los Angeles, my adopted home for the past 8 years. I'd grown accustomed to the busy downtown streets and mild California weather. I was even indifferent to the infamous Los Angeles traffic. But most of all, I loved the familiarity of home. 

Birds-eye view over Los Angeles
I've always had a romanticized notion of east coast living. After 8 years in Los Angeles, I knew I would regret it if I never lived in the east coast before turning 30. Harvard gave me a one-way ticket out of California for the next three years and I took it. "This is what you've always wanted," my mom reminds me. 

But nothing breeds anxiety quite like the unknown. 

Landing at Boston Logan International Airport. The first day of the next three years of my life. 
Move-in day was a blur. We fought through a maze of public transit routes in a foreign city. We picked up used Craigslist furniture around Boston in a rented Uhaul truck. Then we tried to finagle the furniture up three flights of the most rickety and narrow staircase I've ever encountered. 
This is what my first day in Boston felt like... 
I'm still getting used to the limited real estate space in Boston. I downsized my wardrobe to fit the tight closet space. My current kitchen is noticeably smaller than my walk-in closet in downtown Los Angeles. In-house washer and dryer units don't exist here. I store my pantry items on the floor of my closet and my toothbrush on my desk. 

My new bedroom in Boston.
The day after my parents flew back to California, I was taken over by a sobering revelation - I was alone in a big city. My network of friends and family was 3,000 miles across the country. Maybe I should have taken the easy route? Maybe I should have done my ortho residency back in Los Angeles?

Overlooking the Charles River from my program director's penthouse in Back Bay. 
But two weeks into my new life in Boston, there is some semblance of normalcy. My pantry is stocked with food. My bedsheets are freshly laundered. A blue peacock tapestry hangs over the exposed-brick wall in my bedroom. I have a few friends to call my own. I still don't have any clue how to survive a New England winter. Or how to distinguish the inbound trams from the outbound trams. But I'm starting to find a comfortable rhythm and place in this majestic city. I can't wait for the adventure of my life for the next three years in Boston. 

Slowly but surely, Boston is starting to feel like home.