"Change Your Place, Change Your Luck"
Since the last episode of Chayyei Sarah, I've moved into my new apartment and adapted to living with my new roommate - not that either of those things were hard.
First, Liza (pronounced Leeza). She is a fantastic roommate for me. I clean, she cooks, and we each think we got the better deal. Many a time I have woken up in the morning to "Good morning, Sarah, there is oatmeal and coffee waiting for you in the kitchen." Or come home to "hi, Sarah. There's a healthy dinner warming for you in the oven." It's like I got married . . . to a wife. I love it. Oh, have I mentioned that she takes care of managing our (sometimes unwieldy) internet network? Or that when some friends gave me a standing fan as a housewarming gift, Liza assembled it for me? Or that she goes to the shuk and does all our shopping, saving us both a lot of money? Or that I really like most of her friends and think they are nifty?
Best of all, it's just so nice to have company. It's only now that I realize just how lonely I'd gotten in my old place. Leeza is a Master's student, so, like me, she's home quite a bit during the day. Between the regular (fun) company and having healthy meals in the house, I've stopped going to cafes so often to work. In fact, even though my rent is a few hundred shekels more per month, I've calculated that it's cheaper for me to live here, because I'm spending so much less on food (and, also, saving a little by sharing the water and electricity bills, internet, etc).
Also, the new place is -- and I say this with infinite gratitude to God -- just gorgeous. It's one flight up, with windows on three sides, and surrounded by trees. All day I hear birds singing outside my windows. Everything was newly renovated before we moved in, and the owner put in some very nice touches, like pretty tilework here and there in the floors, and beautiful kitchen cabinets with some nifty drawers (for example, a corner drawer that pulls out on a diagonal). The floor tiles are all a light beige, giving the apartment a light, airy feel. And I have the "master" bedroom, which is huge both by Israeli standards and by my own, so for the first time in many years I have one side of the room dedicated as "bedroom" space, and the opposite side dedicated as "office" space, and I can psychologically not feel anymore like I'm working in my bedroom.
Speaking of office space, this is also the first time in my life that I had an opportunity to buy the desk of my choosing. In the past, every desk I've ever had was either provided by someone else (eg my parents, the college dormitory, left behind by a previous tenant, etc) or I purchased it on the basis of limiting factors; in my old apartment, I had to conserve space, and though I liked my desk OK enough, I didn't love it. I'd chosen it on the basis of its being a space-saver.
In my new apartment, I have a huge wall against which I could put any desk I wanted. And since I work from home, I decided to invest in a dream desk which would give the honor to my career that I would like for it to deserve. A desk befitting the career I want to have, so I can be inspired by my workspace and grow into it. I went around to many, many furniture stores, sitting at every desk and imagining how I'd feel working at it. You know the scene in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, when Harry tries out different wands until one of them resonates for him? That's what I felt when I found my desk. It's a beautiful work station, 207 cm high and 166 cm long, with light oak wood, blue-tinted cabinets and drawers, and lots of shelf space for my dictionaries, books about writing and grammar, the magazine holders with my published articles, CD's, photos of my family, etc. Every day I look at it and think "Thank you, God! Thank you Thank you Thank you."
** A huge "bli ayin hara" over this whole post! **
FYI, to all my personal friends: I'm coming to the US in a few weeks. I'll be in New York, Cleveland, San Jose, Pittsburgh, and then New York again. Hoping to see as many of you as possible.