My sister Liza once said that you know you’re already a grown-up when you start spending more time in the home and grocery sections rather than the clothes section of the department store.
That made little sense to me in my twenties. After all, I never really spent a lot of time in the clothes section. Clothes shopping was—and still is—a chore, something I must do because I am not a nudist. I’d rather tarry where the shiny cool gadgets are, drooling over the latest electronic wonders and coveting high-priced technology.
For the life of me, I couldn’t imagine being torn between a microwave and an oven toaster; a pre-packed bag of mixed greens and a naked ball of lettuce; a blanket and a comforter. I had been content being fed by McDo, Jollibee, and Pizza Hut delivery. A homemade salad meant red egg and my housemate’s extra tomatoes. And my greatest sleep luxury was keeping company with two pillows whose cases seldom matched the bed sheet.
That was then.
Last weekend I finally made the great move—from sharing an apartment with housemates to living by myself in a small space just a stone’s throw away from work. Don’t get me wrong; I lived with great housemates, and we got along fine. (We had an unspoken rule about cleaning the house: he who can’t stand it should clean it. And, oh boy, the things we could stand!) But I just felt it was my time to move on. Besides, the overloaded MRT commute and the taxi rides had become a daily assault on my sanity (the former) and on my wallet (the latter). I longed for solitude, and I was getting weary of traversing EDSA.
The rent at the new place is quite challenging. But my Excel worksheet tells me I could pull it off if I cut down on gimik (mostly eating out) and other little luxuries. That means I will have to learn to manipulate edible matter, also know as “cooking.” Gulp.
These days I roam the home and grocery sections more often. And I’m finding it quite an adventure. Being a grown-up isn’t so bad after all.