Sunday, September 1st, 2013

I’m in the country for the weekend. Well, not so much the country as New Jersey. But still, it’s out of the City. Not the clandestine, gay destinations of the Hamptons or Fire Island. But I’m with friends, there’s plenty of booze and there’s a pool! What more could a guy want in a weekend away?

We got here yesterday. It’s only a short thirty minutes on the New Jersey Transit train. West Orange is the official stop, a place I know of from reading Philip Roth. We had to wait for our ride to pick us up and take us to the house, so Amber and I decided to have a photo shoot. Which of course was hysterical.

As you know, I really like trying to give model face. It doesn’t usually come out right, but it’s always funny. Suck in those cheeks a little bit, bare down on those molars, stretch out that neck and give the camera your best intense (yet also blank) stare. We have some really great pictures. We found this huge green door at the station and used it as a backdrop. It’s very H&M advertorial. And with my new Instagram account (I just joined this week) I actually get to post them! It’s nice having an outlet where I’m not connected to you. I can post whatever I want and not worry about what you’ll think or say or do. I know, I could just stop following you on Twitter and de-friend you on Facebook…but I’m not ready for that yet. That seems like a pretty drastic move, and a final one. I’m still not sure that we’re over. At least, I still don’t want us to be over.

Our ride arrived and our photo shoot ended. Though we still have plenty of weekend hours to resume it.

I should say that I’m out here in New Jersey because of Lauren, my friend who introduced me to the kickball team and taught me how to knit. She invited us all out to her family’s house for the weekend. It’s not on the beach or anything. So don’t go imagining the Jersey Shore. It’s way better than that. Her family has this gorgeous house in this kind of secluded neighborhood. It’s in America’s first gated  community, so you can imagine just how nice it is. Thomas Edison lived there, and they’ve turned his workshop into a museum. The whole thing is like some wooded paradise. Regal and quiet with all these really old, beautiful houses.

Lauren’s house is this beautifully rustic, manor-type construction. It has four different gardens.

(Yes. You read that right. Four different gardens. There’s the one that’s pretty standard and serves as their backyard. Then they have a little side garden that has this lovely koi pond in it. And then down a little bit is their garden that has a pool in it. And then down from that is this wonderful wooded area that  that, with its towering trees and quiet noises of nature that seem so much louder because you never hear them in the City, makes you forget completely that you”re in New Jersey . And what’s more impressive is that her parents put it all in by themselves! No gardeners allowed. That’s a pair of real green thumbs there.)

So let’s leave off with any further description and just believe me when I say her family’s house is idyllic.

We got to the house and immediately threw on our suits and ran to the pool. Of course, we did grab some beers and make a few Bloody Mary’s to take with us first. So I guess the migration to the pool wasn’t immediate, but it certainly was on the top of our to-do list.

There’s nothing like laying out by the pool with friends and a beer to drink. With trees towering all around us, everything seemed so hushed and calm. It was, in one word, relaxing. Just what I needed. Ever since you broke up with me it’s been worry and anxiety on my part. My mind’s been overwhelmed with missing you, and all I’ve been able to think about is what I did wrong and how can I fix it. It’s exhausting. And super depressing. There are only so many times that I can sit in bed with the lights turned off listening to Sara Bareilles and crying.

I needed a break from our break-up. And this weekend was looking like it’d be just that.

We spent the rest of the day laying out by the pool and drinking. It was wonderfully relaxing, and a reminder to me of just how great all of my friends are.

That’s the one positive out of our break-up. I’m realizing just how amazing my friends are.

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