These past few weeks has been full of “lasts.” The last day in the office, the last night in my bedroom in D.C., the last time I’d be up at my grandma’s house. For the past two and a half years I have been working full time and attending Georgetown University at night. It was a wonderful experience, but leading a double life is exhausting and I need a break. So, I’m taking this summer off to travel (more on that later). In August I am driving to Missoula, Montana to write my undergraduate thesis and finally finish my B.A. It was strange to leave D.C., I had established a solid routine and was surrounded by interesting ideas and people. As things often do, D.C. worked better in theory than it does in practice. D.C. is a divided city, divided between those who live there and those who work there. Besides, I am ready for new experiences and wanted to write my thesis in peace.
I find the idea of “last” very strange. In some ways, honoring the “last” undermines the present moment. “Last” falls into the same category as “should.” Its the idea that you will or won’t have something, and skips over the present reality. I do, however, believe in having fun in recognition that there is limited time to do so. I didn’t have class during the final few weeks I was in D.C., and only working 40 hours a week felt like a vacation. I spent weekends and afternoons going to museums, parades and making the rounds.
I’m instinctively turned off by the idea of the lasts. However, the lasts can be productive in in context to the past. Last means that you have reached your final destination, that you’ve completed this chapter and are ready to move onto the next stage. Like cleaning up the accumulation of dust, the last day signifies the culmination of the events over the past years.
Long story short, I moved out of my room in D.C. and into my (then) roommate’s room one week before I moved out of my apartment. I moved my stuff out of the room and then began the task of cleaning the room. Before I could use the vacuum, I had to take out a massive hairball. It took about five minutes to saw the hair from the vacuum. It was such tangible evidence of all that had accumulated over the past few years.
I also said goodbye to my grandma’s house in Hillsdale, New York. Hillsdale is right across the Massachusetts state border, and just a short distance from the hospitol where I was born. In 1986, the Mets and Red Socks were playing head to head in the World Series. My parents, who are big Mets fans and were living with my grandparents in Hillsdale, went to a bar just across the Massachusetts border to watch the 6th game of the World Series. The Red Socks were up in the series, and lost this 6th game because of Bill Buckner’s error. A ball went right through the legs of the Red Socks first basemen. My very pregnant mother was so excited by this play that her water broke when they returned to my grandparents house in Hillsdale. So, needless to say, it was sad to see Hillsdale go. But, its for the best. My grandma is moving full time into New York City, and we’ll get to see even more of her.