My last few days in the Bay Area are great. I secretly pretend that I’m a much bigger professional comedian than I really am, fresh off his biggest tour, with nothing else to do but relax in his nice Berkeley apartment. Technically, it’s Chris’s apartment, but I ignore that. I try to rest up at “home,” but it doesn’t take long before I nearly break the shower knobs, and get a CD stuck in the computer. The illusion is quickly shattered, as I destroyed my responsible friend’s apartment, as thank you for allowing me to stay there for free for a few days. It’s good to know that even in my wildest fantasies, I’m still a wreck.
When Chris comes home from work and finds me passed out on the couch watching TV Land, we manage to straighten everything out. Nothing is broken; I’ve just been reduced to a state of constant paranoia. To relax, we go out for a quiet dinner and have a nice time catching up and talking about the New York punk scene back when we both lived there a few years ago. That seems to be the tone for the weekend. As exciting as it is to be in a new city, I’ve about had my limit. Feeling burnt out physically and mentally, I spend a lot of time hanging around the apartment, opting to stay in and watch Saturday Night Live by myself instead of going out with Chris and his girlfriend.
We do get around a little bit though. Chris and I drive into San Francisco and walk around the Mission District. Later on, I take BART and meet an old college friend, Monica, to walk around the Fisherman’s Wharf. My last day, Chris drops me off at San Francisco International airport. Waiting in the terminal, eating a late dinner by myself, I’m conflicted; After weeks of traveling and months of preparation, I feel accomplished, and I’m happy to not be taking up space on people’s couches anymore. But I also don’t want it to be over, to go back to “regular” life.
My flight is a redeye, which is just like being back in the RV all night; No matter how hard you try to sleep, it doesn’t happen. When we land in New York, it’s 5:30 in the morning, dreary and rainy. Despite having been bundled up for a lot of my time in California, I don’t mind the cold. Making my way home on the subway, I start thinking about what I have to take care of, catch up on, and what the future holds. It’s not exciting like deciding what to choose for dinner at a roadside diner in the middle of nowhere, but it’s not nerve racking like constantly trying to find a way to get around. Or place to stay. And looking out the window of the train with all my bags, it feels like this isn’t over, so much as entering a new phase in a happier, better existence.