Last week I handed in the first draft of my new book. This week my little (but growing) family packed up our Manhattan apartment of the past six years, and set sail for (or tunneled our way to) the fine borough of Brooklyn. After two days of opening boxes, and dodging the construction team that's still finishing up the renovations we're doing, we're more settled than not. This in fact is the first post from my new study, which is a lovely little space on the top floor blessed with the brilliant asset of a door. (Ever since our son was born, and kicked me out of my old study, I'd been working in a corner of a large room that also functioned as kitchen, living room, and loft bedroom.) At long last I can stay up late listening to music and posting regrettable things on the Internet. Good news for the blog, in other words, as well as for me.
We've moved to Park Slope, which is one of the classic New York neighborhoods, for those of you not familiar with it: perfectly preserved tree-lined streets of late 19th-century brownstones descending down from Olmsted's other great NYC park. As it happened, we moved in at the absolute peak time of year here: brilliant crisp 68-degree weather, tulip magnolias and cherry trees and lilacs in full splendor. We took so long getting out of our old place that the movers didn't actually start unloading the van until around 7 PM, precisely as the rest of the neighborhood was strolling home from the subway. It was a really touching scene: everybody out on the street, chatting with each other, stopping by our place to introduce themselves and offer help. I was a little worried that I'd get out here and feel pangs for Manhattan, but I haven't felt anything like that at all, mostly because all the things I love about the Village -- sidewalk-centric life, neighborhood camaraderie, great architecture and restaurants and bars -- are all out here as well, only you get fabulous green outdoor environments, and you can afford much more space indoors.
The new homeowner thing has been pretty funny. Last night I took a bath and set off a torrential leak in the basement that had to be repaired today, and I've been watering my lawn (okay, my 12 by 30 foot plot of grass) like a maniac. All the joys of suburban life, without actually having to move to the suburbs!