No Going Back?

R.B. Winters
R.B. Winters
All, Bar, Bull Shit, Friends, New York 5 Comments

New York has a special place in my heart. As a little boy and a teenager it was the goal, the direction, the only thing that mattered. Today, however, I had a thought…what if I don’t go back?

San Juan is not easier than New York overall, I don’t speak Spanish, the Sun burns me at every opportunity and I can’t get half the food and merchandise I want without immense struggle (first world problems). At the same time, I have an enormous apartment with every single amenity which is thousands of dollars outside my reach in the city. So, it really comes down to people.

I’ve picked up and moved before, I left all my Utah friends almost nine years ago and only looked back now and then. We made it work because there is a mutual understanding to one another’s life goals. It is becoming clear that this is not going to be the case with my city friends. When and if I do go home in April what exactly am I returning to other than a half furnished apartment and the frustration of getting a damn cat through the airport?

Here’s the skinny: The Straights are so over New York that it’s disheartening. They’re likely going to be moving in less than a year, which in all honesty is too sad to consider at this time. I hate missing people, though I obviously miss them and my gays at this moment while I’m in San Juan. That was my decision so I’ll shut my mouth.

This raises the subject of my gays. After expressing their frustrations, well, one expressed frustration, but the message sounded tailor crafted from both, of their disdain for my decision to leave without their blessing via email it became a tad rocky. To be frank, no one gets a say in anything I do. This is my life. As a single adult with no children it is up to me how I plan and paint my future. The same courtesy is extended to all my friends, I have no say in their lives. Perhaps I’m being too blunt in this, but to me being a friend means nothing more than enjoying the time you spend with another person or group of people with no expectation of anything. Relationships, as in couples, are for expectations, not friends. So, now they speak to me with no regularity, and in fact, we could say they’ve all but stopped. I do not apologize when there is nothing to be sorry for, and this rift may be the end of a valuable friendship over truly silly things.

What is waiting for me in New York: Friends who don’t want to talk to me…friends who are leaving…and a small group of friends who are remaining in place. It’s fraction of the life I thought was there and now it appears as if it was all shallow, surface material. I hope to be proven completely wrong as this is not how I want things to be, but it is becoming clear that this is how they may have been all along.

Comments 5

  1. Being one of said friends who no longer speaks with you on a daily basis, this article needs some corrections:

    We both expressed our disdain separately, but for the same reason. That reason was not, as you mentioned because we disapproved of your decision to move but because of your lack of effort to spend time with us prior to leaving. It’s interesting that you are refusing to apologize for something that you were never accused of doing, considering that I was very clear when I expressed my disappointment with your lack of communication or effort to spend time with your friends before you left….never even once questioning your decision to leave.

    I always make time for people who value my friendship, Expectations are normal when you care about someone enough to give them your most valuable asset — time. You may want to rethink your logic regarding expectations.

  2. Being one of said friends mentioned above, this needs some corrections:

    Since I’m not the friend who emailed you, I’m gonna call bullshit on the “tailor crafted from both” email.. I was very clear about my disappointment with your lack of interest in spending time with your friends prior to moving. I never once objected to your decision to leave and even wished you well. So, your refusal to apologize for something that you were never accused of seems to serve a dual purpose (supports your false accusation and lets you off the hook, at least in your mind.)

    I do indeed have expectations of anyone I care enough about to spend time with. Your time is the most precious gift you can give to a person. Since we’re being blunt, you may want to rethink your approach to friendships.

    1. Post

      Glad to know you’re still kicking out there. The one question that I keep asking, as you insist upon your disappointment in my ability to hangout during a busy time, why not stop by? I mean, the final day I spent a solid ten hours lugging boxes, which I did not ask for help from you or anyone with – I mean, who wants to spend a whole Saturday moving junk? No, one. But, if you cared so much, you would have, or at least could have, stopped over and had wine and chatted. Instead, since I cancelled brunch you were too busy cooking.

      Time is a gift of sorts, but you can’t attach strings.

      1. These strings you speak of are a figment of your imagination. You did ask for help and, as friends do, I agreed to help and you. But you changed your moving plans multiple times (last minute), to the point where I finally had plans to do something else. You also had plenty of opportunities to make plans and chose to wait till the very last minute. Sounds to me like your expectations are a lot higher than you imagine them to be. Just to be clear, since that seems to be VERY necessary here, my disappointment is not in your inability to hang out perse, but the low value you placed on our friendship.

        1. Post

          Correct, I asked for help on a Wednesday, and then cancelled prior as I knew I had nothing ready. My work week was particularly busy and there just wasn’t time. Yes, work always comes first, it pays the bills and for the things I want, like those fun brunch days. The plans only changed this one time and the brunch that was scheduled last minute, I cancelled days in advance when it became clear there was probably not going to be enough time to work, pack and brunch. And you, king of being angry over every small thing, would have been furious if I canceled brunch the morning it was to take place. In fact, if I cancelled last minute, I’m sure you would have turned it into an even larger drama than this ridiculous conversation we’re having now. I thought this was a nicety, but of course, and I was right, you were upset over a plan change. As I said, I will not be sorry for not doing what you expect or want. You don’t get to place expectations on your friends except for them to be your friends. We clearly view friendship in very different lights, perhaps it’s a good thing to know now.