ellen_kushner (ellen_kushner) wrote,
ellen_kushner
ellen_kushner

You Can Go Home Again

The most extraordinary thing happened to me today.

I returned to the apartment I lived in after college, the one that inspired my Riverside books, the one where I wrote Swordspoint and Thomas the Rhymer.

It happened because, about 3 years ago, I wrote this post about it.  Recently, the new owner found the post and wrote asking me if she was indeed living in my old apartment.

Reader . . . It was someone I knew.  --Or, at least, had known, in my previous lifetime in publishing.  She'd known my brother in college, and we'd had lunch a couple of times.  She worked at the Village Voice, then. (Now, she is a YA writer, and I will have to ask her permission before I go posting her address here....I'll call her "P--" for now.) We also figured out that she is the person responsible for my reading BAB: A SUB-DEB.  And she had a well-worn first edition of Swordspoint.

The odds are dazzling and enormous.

And here I confess that it's taken me about a year to take her up on her offer to come over and see the old place.  Even though, before I knew it was hers, I'd dreamed of slipping a note under the door saying, "Hi, I used to live here and would you mind terribly if I came in and looked around, sometime?"  It's different, when it's someone you know.

Fortunately, Terri had also lived in that apartment with me for awhile (along with a rotating cast of roommates) - she created Bordertown there, in fact! - and she wanted to see it, too.  So we went together.

And it was wonderful.  My body remembered the elevator, and the hallway; it all felt right and familiar, as if I'd never left.  The apartment's been fixed up - inlaid floors sanded & polished, kitchen re-done - but not unrecognizably. And it's all still there.  Terri & P-- went into the kitchen to make tea, and I confess I sat in the livingroom and cried, because there was the fireplace where Alec burned the book, and the wall Richard had practiced against.  And the window where I had my desk, looking out on the street, was glowing in the sunlight.

I joked with P-- that, since I am trying to write a novel about a girl who goes back to Riverside, she should let me come over and write there - and she claimed that if I promised to name an appealing character after her, she would consider it.

We'll see.

This is not quite the post I'd intended to write; either I'm too tired, or I don't actually want to talk about it all yet. I did take a lot of photos, and maybe I'll put them up, here or on FB. (I tweeted one, today - because it's easy from my iPhone.  I'm so Lo-Tech!) But since the day also included Delia leaving for ICFA, and my going later to a friend's talk at the Drama Bookshop . . . and getting and obsessing over audition clips for the TPOTS actors . . . Well, it's nice to be able to just sit here and think about it.

Tags: daily life, nyc
Subscribe
  • Post a new comment

    Error

    default userpic
    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.
  • 20 comments
Previous
← Ctrl ← Alt
Next
Ctrl → Alt →
Previous
← Ctrl ← Alt
Next
Ctrl → Alt →