It has been a month since I packed up life as it was in Virginia and headed south to North Carolina. I'm not an official resident yet (ugh, the DMV) but will be soon. I'm still not completely unpacked (shocking, I know) but the essentials are there.
I worked from home the first week, which gave me time to supervise the unpackers (my parents stayed for the first few days) and make sure the cats didn't kill each other. Yes, cats. Plural. Because the week before a complete upheaval of your life is the perfect time to adopt an 8 week old kitten. I'm such a sucker. Anyhoo...I went into my new office on the second week for 3 days.
My employer has been incredibly supportive of me in the months since Mark died, going so far as to let me keep my job, move out of state, and show up to a branch office a few times a week to maintain my questionable socialization skills. I am truly lucky. I'm keeping the same hours that I had in Virginia and the same WFH/in office days. Just, you know, in another state. NBD.
So, first impressions of NC. Humid as fuck. Hot too. Though neither surprise me. Virginia had similar weather and I anticipated that NC would up the ante. It has. I'm not at all acclimated to it but I'm not sure anyone ever does. You just build up a tolerance of sorts, similar to pain. Other than that, NC is much greener. I attribute 90% of that to the fact that they aren't plowing under every living thing to build ALL THE GAWDY HOUSING so ALL THE PEOPLE can live here.
Traffic. I'm sorry, what is traffic? I'm sure for people who have lived here much longer that the main highways can be considered congested at times. To me, it is wide open spaces. My commute into the office is 20 miles. You know how long that takes me? 23 minutes. 23 MINUTES. Let me throw those figures into the NC to VA traffic clusterfuck configurator for some perspective. I lived 12 miles away from my office in VA and most days it took 30 minutes. I was 20 miles from the DC line. Try to drive that any time between 6 am and 9 pm? At least an hour's drive. So, yeah. NC wins the traffic lottery.
I've run quite a bit, in spite of the weather. Partly to see my friends, partly to find some new happy places, mostly for therapy. All good things. I like the change of scenery, but I am a little bummed with most of sidewalks being concrete. I didn't realize how much pavement I was running on in VA until now. Ouch. For me, I can feel the difference in my legs and have been running on the edge of road when safely possible. I've checked out two different running groups so far (#introvertouting) and enjoyed both. I do not like trying new things alone, so I'm proud of myself for stepping outside my comfort zone.
There have been plenty of difficult moments, to be sure, but this isn't the post for those. If you haven't noticed yet I've added a new section to the blog on grieving. There has been a lot of overlap between my running and my grief, but each deserves its own space. I also want to give anyone reading the opportunity to choose what they want to hear about. I'm not interested in shoving either part of my life down anyone's throat. So...yeah. Here we are. Alive in NC.