I grew up in New York City – a proud Brooklyn native – the type who claimed I would never leave. Shortly after September 11th my roommates and I realized we were neither immoral nor invincible. It was now or never – our 20s were for risk taking, to pick up and go some place new.
After all, my roommates had moved to New York City to pursue their dreams, but realized that their aspirations could actually become reality any where – it was time to find a place where the cost of a parking spot was the not equivalent to an apartment in another city.
While the sensible approach to such an endeavor might have been researching a city or applying for jobs in targeted cities, we concluded pinning a map of the United States to the wall of our living room would suffice. So, we poured glasses of wine and nibbled on cheese as we mulled over where we could envision ourselves living in less than a few weeks.
A friendly game was suggested to help us make the decision faster – Pin the Tail on the City. The rules were similar to its cousin – Pin the Tail on the Donkey- a blindfolded contestant who would spin around three times before being let go to pin the prize. In this case, anywhere on the map of the United States, rather than the tail of the donkey.
I landed on Salt Lake City. In less than a week, I said goodbye to friends and family, and I was off on my adventure. I don’t remember where each of my roommates’ pins landed because they decided to relocate to a farm in Upstate New York together.
I knew I did not have to stick to this plan that seemed to pin the tail on the roommate (in this case me), but something about the spontaneity appealed to me. I was ready for a change. I knew I would be back.