Sunday morning Samantha finally finished packing.
"Good grief girl, do you think we ordered a big enough truck?" her father asked.
"Well, if we didn't we'll have to get a bigger one. I need all this stuff."
"Yes, I'm sure you do, but maybe you should stack these in the order of importance, just in case when they get here it doesn't all fit. That way we can maybe send the rest later."
"No, Daddy, that's not funny."
"Alright, pumpkin, we'll make it fit somehow."
Samantha's mother walked into the room. "All packed?" She had tears in her eyes.
"Yes, I think I'm all ready."
"It's not to late to change your mind."
"Mom, we've been through this before."
As long as Sam could remember her mother had started all her sentences with 'I'm just afraid that...' That fear of the unknown had begun to take hold of Sam too, until one day Samantha realized that what she feared more than anything was missing an opportunity because she was too afraid to get out and seize it.
“Well then kiddo, we better be getting to the airport,” her father said. “We’ve got a plane to catch.”
“Okay, Dad,” Samantha said.
“Is this what we’re taking with us?” her father asked looking at the pile of luggage by the door.
“I have to survive almost a whole week before the movers bring my stuff, Daddy.” Samantha explained.
“Looks like enough to last you a few months,” he replied.
Samantha rolled her eyes as her mother hid a smirk. Samantha’s father loved to give her a good ribbing. “You two quit your bickering and get loaded up so I can drop you off,” she said.
Once on the plane and on the way to New York Samantha leaned over to her father. “Have I told you how much it means to me that you’re coming with me to help get me settled in?”
“Nonsense, I couldn’t let my baby girl run off to the city alone. It’s too bad your fella didn’t land a job there too.”
“I don’t have a fella, Dad.” They had been through this before, ever since her parents had met Seth while visiting her at college, her father had been sure there was something going on.
“You know who I mean, that Seth fella you’ve been dating.”
“Seth and I are only friends. I’ve told you before.” She had been tempted so many times to just tell her dad that Seth was gay. Her father was a pretty open-minded guy, but in the end it wasn’t really any of his business.
“I just know what I see.”
“Yeah? And what is it you think you see?”
Her father only shrugged and went back to his newspaper.
Samantha got off the plane and looked around at the airport and all the people scurrying to and fro. She had traveled her fair share and it wasn’t like the twin cities or Green Bay were exactly small, but New York still took her breath away. They gathered their luggage and hailed a cab, giving the driver the address to her new apartment.
When they pulled up in front of what would soon be Sam’s apartment building her father helped her out and paid the driver. “Damn, Daddy, I’ll need a loan just to take a cab back to the airport when I come home for a visit.”
“Nonsense, you’ll be making the big bucks.”
“It’ll take big bucks just to pay for this apartment.”
They carried their bags up to the doorway. “Does this place have an elevator?” her father asked.
“Ha, the apartment buildings with elevators were a little out of my price range.”
“Yet another reason your boyfriend should be here.”
“He’s not my boyfriend, and his starting pay isn’t as much as mine.”
“Well, he could at least carry your bags up the four flights of stairs.”
Neither spoke after that, conserving their energy to make the trek up to the fourth floor each loaded down with suitcases and overnight bags.
“This is it,” Samantha said as they finally reached her apartment door.
“Please tell me you have the key,” her father joked.
“Not funny,” she said as she opened her purse and pulled out a silver key ring. “Ta da,” she said as she swung the door open.
“This isn’t an apartment. Hell, I have a closet back at the house that is bigger than this.”
“Oh, Daddy, you do not. It’s an efficiency apartment and all I can afford on my salary.”
“Another reason to have stayed in Minnesota. I’m sure you could have had a house there for what this Cracker Jack box is costing you here.”
“But it’s New York, Daddy.”
He rolled his eyes. “New York is just another city, my dear.”
“No, it’s not. It’s where I’ve always wanted to live. Ever since I was a little girl I’ve dreamed of living here.”
“Well then, let’s just hope it lives up to your dreams.”