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7.28.2011

the hudson (from where i sleep)

i have a skewed sense of money. i'll pay four bucks for a cup of coffee with only the slightest twinge of regret, but i absolutely refuse to leave the refrigerator door open for one second longer than necessary. don't get me started on running a half-empty dishwasher--i feel bad enough running the full one.

and then there's air conditioning. my guilt at turning on the small window unit in my room knows no bounds.

my stomach is in knots just thinking about it. actually, come to think of it, my stomach may be in knots because i just broke one of the keys on my brand-spankin'-new-macbook-air...sigh. kerfuffle. splat. {feeling like a bit of a disaster today. most days, really}.

but that's another story for another day.

back to the air conditioner.

when new york got hot this summer and the heat rash broke out on my stomach i swallowed my guilt and started pressing that glorious little button of that cooling machine. at first i'd pull my reading chair right up to it and let it blow over my face. i'd close the doors to my room and create a little ice box: air conditioner, fan, closed windows, closed doors, and me in the corner--a greedy little kid stealing cool air from the pantry and hoping not to be caught.

from there my idea of it expanded. i'd turn it on and walk about the room, unapologetically. i even took to sleeping with it on at night (though usually i'd wake sometime just after three to turn it off in a half-wake/half-sleep/half-guilt stupor.

and then new york got hotter. and these old buildings--these buildings that have seen it all and tell countless stories began to take that heat on and in and i started to lose my mind.

and just as the mind went, clarity arrived (go figure). why not move my bed as close to the window unit as possible? why not switch my room around for the sake of the practical.

when i took this room--this room with two separate window looking out over the hudson--i knew one thing: my desk would sit between those windows. and mornings would be spent there with coffee in hand taking in the water's gleam and getting work done.

from there i arranged the bed. the bookcase. the dresser. and it was just right. just as it should be.

but having flipped the room, for the sake of the practical, well, i can see the hudson and the green of the palisades when i wake in the morning (from my bed). gone is the image of the red building across the way--a building who's facade i loved and was always glad to greet upon rising. turns out river and trees trump red brick, every time (go figure).

i'm not sure why i'm writing about this this morning. i think because there's a metaphor in it.

i didn't want to move my bed. i thought it was in the perfect spot. but i did because i knew i'd be cooler at night. turns out, the air conditioning isn't even what i most love about the shift. it's the view. the view i least expected. the view that i'm not quite sure how i didn't work out months ago was best seen from this position.

my mind is in a fog this morning. what i'm getting at (and what i need to take away) is that shifting one's perspective can illuminate a lot more than you bargained for.


hmph. something like that. and because i always like seeing people's space and home and such, i give you some of mine:

chair

lavender

dresser

thru the window

45 comments:

Taylor Yves said...

ugh, i totally wake up at 3 AM and turn off our air in the half sleep-half guilt stupor.

Sarah McCabe said...

That really is a BEAUTIFUL view...

Tucker said...

oh i know about being cheap about some things and then not about others.

and that view. meg fee. is to.die.for.
lucky girl.

by r. said...

TOO too lovely! I am dying for a view like that and the crown molding and those windows...oh la la. :)

whitney said...

What a beautiful Meg!

amanda jane said...

you have such a beautiful home. :)

Ana Magdalena said...

what a beautiful view.

Jenni Austria Germany said...

ok, we need to switch places for awhile.

you come to europe, i'll come to nyc.

except forget the switching part because then we wouldn't get to hang out.

Alex said...

That view is to dieee for. I see Memorial area houses out my window. Not as cool.

Jay said...

your room looks so cozy!! can i come visit?? the view is stunning too!! best of wishes from norway

Brissa said...

that view is incredible. what i wouldn't give to spend one day with that view.

kate said...

that space is so exceptional, so you. (i'm going to run out of grand adjectives to use to describe something on your blog.)

that view. breathtaking.

sophie said...

i have serious air conditioner guilt, too. i think it's partially due to the fact that when i wake up in the middle of the night and hear its awful humming, i know that i am not only paying up the wazoo to only be mildly comfortable, but it just feels so FAKE.

your view is magnificent! very jealous!

Amy said...

that's a lovely view, and your room looks so comfy and cute! looks like a great place to spend lots of time :)

Michelle Kendrick Hartney said...

so very true!

Jw said...

I can't even begin to fathom having the opportunity to live in New York City. You are very lucky...and with a view of the Hudson! wow. I'm sure it's all very deserving.

I'll just live through your pictures for the time being. :)

michal said...

your room is so beautiful! AND THAT VIEW!! be still, my heart.

*S said...

That view is GORGEOUS!

homeseed said...

WOW. that is so awesome! what a view! and...what a lovely and cozy home. thanks for speaking truth about perspective changes illuminating more than you anticipate. lovely words. lovely, indeed :)

Carrie Rosalind said...

What a gorgeous view and your room is gorgeous as well! You are a lucky, lucky girl!

Biswaroop said...

i stumbled upon your blog only yesterday, have read a lot of your posts since then. your writings, expressions, ideas.. are 'remarkable'..to drive home a point, you make it so affable, adoring and so much next-door-neighborhood(had to invent this one), and you actually drive it home, cozily, right into the bedroom-comfort-zone, with those photos too. i find your photography so very resplendent with freshness. u mentioned you are a writer(without specifying), when is your warm-hug- fiction coming out? Life is Good!

wildchild said...

oh i love the dried lavender everywhere! and you're right, that view is beautiful. an unwilling perspective change does sometimes bring wonderful results.

Ashley said...

I love your room. And that view....wow. Pretty amazing.

Brittany said...

That is an amazing view--one of the best I've seen in NYC. I love that it's both city and nature.

Sladjana said...

WOW! So lovely!
You have there a little of paradise for your self!

xoxo
-S

Danielle said...

Meg! That view! I wish I could find something like that in Glasgow.
Also, you have such a lovely looking room. It must be nice to close the door to escape in there with a book.

Alivia said...

Holy God this room.
I can't even put into words how much I love it. Maybe my lack of regard for syntax shows that, though? Haha! Honestly, though: I love this space.
And when I lived in Jersey while attending Ailey, we always ran the AC an hour before bed, shut it off, and only turned it on for a few minutes if we woke up because of suffocating heat.

Erin said...

oh yes. i rarely ever feel guilt for buying expensive coffee. but using too much electricty? shameful.

i love your room. and the view. but i'm curious... is your desk still between the windows?

ALFIE said...

oh the power. and the insane revelation. that a new perspective can bring.

sometimes it's all we need to go from restless. to nearly satisfied.

Happy Wife said...

perfect.
new perspective.
new view.
new adventures to be had in a new space.

xoxo

the soft soled said...

Oh my goodness this view is magic! Seattle has no air conditioning (anywhere) and some times I miss the frozen feel you get from sitting too close to the vent. Reminds me of summer when I was little.

Daina @ New York State of Mind said...

Wow, wow, wow, I love your apartment! I am absolutely terrified to see my next email from Con Ed. I have pretty much given up on my electric bill; it will be at its highest this month for sure. I am very jealous of your views- from my room I see, well, lots of other apartments just like my own. Luckily, there is a tree providing a little view of nature as well. You have such a beautiful space!

Michelle said...

I love your room. I love the view. And I love the metaphor.

Jennifer Rod said...

I love everything about your place and your view! :)

christine donee said...

I got practical and moved to southern california. talk about rearranging..

dull boy said...

that view is totally not what i expected.....it looks like the wild west on the other side....where's all the new york skyscrapers??

viktorija said...

I love your view (bottom pic)! So pretty!! I moved the furniture around in my room back in the spring and you're right - it's literally life w/a new perspective.

gypsy cab said...

Gorgeous!!

Emily said...

Your room is a lot like your writing - lovely, inspiring, and just the right amount of detail. (Thank you for sharing them both.)

Sini said...

I don't even hair AC at home, I wish we had as we live in hot Provence (France) and sometimes our apartment feels like a sauna. I love how your room loos like, very pretty!

Malin said...

I definitely wouldn't mind waking up to that view. Oh, you so make me want to go to New York!

Sara L. said...

That is such a gorgeous view!!!

Thao said...

Your room is so beautiful and relaxing! Thanks for sharing. I hope to someday have a sky-high view like yours!

Rachael said...

Your room looks so peaceful. Your view is spectacular! I love getting to peer into someone else's life...
I used to rearrange my room every time I got angsty or sad. So, weekly in high school. I was afraid to move it near the window after some people came by and vandalized my car at night once. I felt like they'd come back for me. I'd love to have a window higher up like that.

Jennifer M. said...

You're right - that's a great view. :) How wonderful it is when you accidentally stumble upon something so beautiful.

Your post reminded me of how I sometimes like to sit in odd places - like the curb in front of post office or something - and it always seems like I start to see the world just a little differently because I'm looking at it from a different perspective. I think there are so many places that we just walk by and never really see. And then sometimes we slow down or just turn around and look and we see something that makes us think a different way.