Tuesday, January 20, 2015

This is the place.

So I got this job in Salt Lake City, and so we decided to move to Salt Lake City. We are now very cosmopolitan--I ride public transportation regularly and there are multiple ethnic grocery stores in our neighborhood. And I love it.

And okay. So Salt Lake City has a population of only 176, 000. Which is small change compared to like, most other large cities in the United States. New York City has literally 47 times more people. My own hometown of Fremont, California has almost twice as many people as Salt Lake City has.

But look. I've been living in Rexburg, Idaho for the past ten years. And do you know what the population of Rexburg is? 26,000. If you go to the grocery store (one of the three in the city limits), it is unusual to NOT see someone you know. The restaurant situation is somewhat abysmal. I've left my car unlocked with my purse sitting in the front seat for an entire day and nothing happened.

Now, I have so many restaurants to choose from that I'm overwhelmed by the choices. I have to lock my front door every night. I've got a Trader Joe's and a Costco and multiple branches of the library and I LOVE IT. I do miss being able to see the stars at night. But I'm surrounded by mountains and hikes and non-white people and it's awesome.

I also love that I can sign up for something like "Introduction to Aerial Silks and Trapeze" at the aerial silks gym a few blocks away. It was my community class for my "29 Goals While 29" list and I'm having a BLAST. The classes are on Tuesday nights, and after the first one, it took me until Sunday to stop feeling sore. I've been trying to stretch and work out more regularly since then, and I feel more and more at home in my body.

It's funny--I've spent years in dance and even a little time in gymnastics, but aerial silks and trapeze feel so different. I spent the entire first class sort of fighting my body to do things, and my body kept saying, "I don't understand what you want me to do!" Aerial silks demand this weird combination of contraction and extension of different muscles that just don't come naturally to me. Everything you do on the silks and trapeze has multiple steps, and several times per class, I get halfway through the steps and then sort of "get stuck." Like, I'm sort of tangled up and not sure what to do next or how I look. So I end up hanging upside down or sideways and sort of looking around for one of the coaches to help me out. But I always do figure it out. It's starting to feel more natural. I sort of force myself to go first whenever we learn something new, so that I don't have time to get scared or overthink it. And I've managed to do things that I never would have believed I could do.

I feel like my entire aerial silks class experience has some sort of metaphorical resonance, but I'm not sure what it is yet.


In summary, I get it. As far as "big cities" go, Salt Lake is about as vanilla as you can get. But I don't care. I'm taking a trapeze class and all of the grocery stores near me are ethnic. Welcome to the big time.

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