In my effort to be a little more real, I’ll give you the highs and lows of this past weekend.
Friday night was great. My gay boyfriend (yes – you read that correctly. He’s one of my faves!) and I decided to celebrate my New Yorkiversary with dinner at this little hole-in-the-wall Dominican place, Punta Cana. He says it is like serving “memories on a plate” from his mission days in the DR. Mostly tasted like chicken, rice, and beans to me. There is a Chilean bakery in Queens that he said he would go to with me so I could have my own “memories on a plate” experience.
Afterward, we went to Ros’ apartment for a little dance party. Ros is my lovely British scientist friend. She studies malaria and infectious diseases and is wicked smaht. Not only is she wicked smaht, but she is a delight to be around, so making the trek up to Inwood (tippy-top of the island of Manhattan) is worth it. The party did not disappoint. 20+ people (most of whom I adore/like) at any given moment in her little flat, disco lightbulbs, great playlists, and plenty of sugar (the Mormon drug of choice) in various forms made for a pretty fantastic night. I busted out most of my moves, surprising a couple people who don’t know me well. The dancer in me has been a hibernating for the past year – there haven’t been many opportunities to wake her up!
The next day was sunny, breezy, and begging to be enjoyed. My awesome roommate, Kelsey, decided to keep me company on my Saturday run (she’s been doing that lately and I really love it) through Central Park. I came back and got ready for something I had been dreading – lunch with the ex. Backstory: In May I started dating a guy that a mutual friend introduced me to. I liked him…really liked him It actually surprised me how much I liked him. But, it was fun because he seemed to like me, too. Things were going pretty well for about two months and then we experienced a little turbulence in July. It was a tough month – I had a lot going on with work and, at the beginning of the month, we’d had one of those uncomfortable tiffs that every relationship, with its ups and downs, experiences. However, I felt pretty confident in us and wasn’t too worried. He had given me enough reassurance that this relationship had some staying power.
And then he broke up with me.
It hurt, as breakups often do. Were a perfect match? No way…I don’t really believe that exists. What I did think was that he had some great qualities and a few quirks (me too – both qualities and quirks) and that I really liked who he was. So the fact the he bailed so quickly, without giving us a real chance, stung.
I had left my yoga mat at his apartment (back when we went to weekly yoga classes together) and started to get to the point where I wanted it back. It had been two months and I finally decided to reclaim my property. I waited that long so I could get to a place where I wouldn’t harbor any hope of getting back together.
When I’d emailed earlier in the week, he offered to bring it by and take me to lunch. I didn’t know what to expect, but it was pretty much the low point of the weekend. The 45 minutes we spent together (yes, only 45 minutes from start to finish…including lunch at a sit-down restaurant with waitstaff and all) was so sterile and felt empty. I almost would rather have had a fight with some real emotion rather than the painful chit-chat we exchanged. It was like bumping into an acquaintance that you don’t really care to see on the subway and you’re forced to make small talk until one of you arrives at your stop–painful. After having been so wrapped up in someone, an experience like that makes it feel like something was a charade. After that lunch, I don’t know if the whole relationship was a farce or just the awkward lunch date.
Ultimately, I do have a little bit of closure. If the guy that I fell for had taken me to lunch that day, I have no doubt I would be wishing we were getting back together. But, he didn’t show. And the guy who did take me to lunch, with the meaningless chatter and the feigned interest in my life, I could do without.
After that, I needed a pick-me-up. And I got it, thanks to my wonderful friends!! Nicole and I both have September New Yorkiversaries (each year survived/accomplished in this crazy place deserves a celebration) and we decided to celebrate together with our favorite New Yorkers. We started off with amazing pizza at Grimaldi’s in Brooklyn — worth the wait, folks. Promise.
Afterward, we hit up the Brooklyn Bridge Ice Cream Factory for a scoop of heaven in a dish. The kid behind the counter must have wanted to make my day because he loaded my single scoop of coffee ice cream sky high, adding hot fudge, whipped cream, and toasted almonds. Delicious!
Then we walked the Brooklyn Bridge, taking in the Manhattan skyline, caught the subway to K-town (Koreatown) and got our karaoke on at Gagopa Karaoke until the early hours of the morning. Karaoke is, by far, one of my absolute favorite things to do here. You get a private room with all of your friends, a book of songs 2″ thick, and the best (and by “best” I mean worst) music videos out there (this one won for the evening). It was the perfect pick-me-up and the best reminder that 52 weeks ago, taking into account all the highs and lows, I made a fantastic decision to come to The City.
(Photos stolen from Nicole — thanks, NR!)
PS – Regarding breakups, I fully acknowledge there are two sides to every story. And at the end of the day, I would much rather be with someone who wants to be with me. I guess the hard part is when they realize that they don’t want to be with you before you realize it about them. I wish the relationship had had more of a chance, but I have been on the breaker-upper side of things and I would venture a guess that I’ve made others I’ve dated feel the same way I did this past weekend. That’s just life (but that doesn’t mean I have to like it).