I always joked that when I moved to Hoboken, although having my own set of keys to my apartment was a new world, due to my measly salary, I could no longer leave the tri-state area.
Well, maybe not a one-way ticket. I do still need a paycheck to pay my rent for my place still in, well, Hoboken. But, I’m off to visit a former Hobokenite and former neightbor from 10th Steet, my friend Kristine.
Stricken with an acute case of wanderlust, Kristine is living the modern, 20-something American dream—to figure out what she wants out of life by crossing the equator to live in New Zealand for a year.
I’ve decided to exchange the pork roll and cheese for kiwis. I’m living my version of the American dream by mooching off of her adventure by crashing at her place in Kerikeri, NZ, for two weeks.
At this point in my life, I’m still in that frame of thought where I really don’t care where I stay as long as it’s cheap and I’m in good company. When I studied abroad in college, when I was traveling outside of my home base of Bath, England, you could find me in a creepy hostel bunk-bed complete with an 80’s-themed cartoon character comforter for 12 euros a night, or on a sofa of one of my other friends studying abroad like me in another country. The young are resilient that way. We may wake up with a slight kink in our necks, but we’ll sleep anywhere: bathtubs, cars, a corner with a pillow or balled up jacket for a pillow, as long as it’s cheap or free. And, you usually get a great story out of it, or if not, in the very least, you can at least sound like you lead a crazy life by always referring to that one time you were woken up by a fleet of drunken Irishmen sticking chips from McDonald’s practically up your nose at 4 AM, or to the sight of an old woman drying her unmentionables by an open window next to your head in 32 degree weather. (I really thought it was a youth hostel when I booked it, I swear).
When you’re older, it’s a different story. You’ve grown accustomed to the finer things in life. When you vacation, you want/need that chocolate on your pillow. Also, by then, perhaps you have arthritis or sprouted a new allergy for dust and you honestly can’t curl up in your friend’s dog bed.
Lucky for me, I am 26 and still don’t really care where I sleep, though the fact that Kristine does have a guest room in her house is quite comforting.
Here’s to a new adventure with a great friend. See you when I get back!