I had a pretty serious girlfriend in New York. Her name was Jill. I was nuts about her.
Jill was a part-time teacher in the math department at NYU. She lived in New York but she was from Vancouver—the same city, coincidentally, where I was shooting a TV show every month or two. She’d grown up in Vancouver in the 70’s and 80’s. She’d been a snowboarding prodigy as a kid, which sounded terribly Canadian to me. She remembered her dad driving her down the icy mountain roads after her snowboarding meets. Her father always bought her a tuna sub from Subway on the way home—that was their ritual. As he steered the car and navigated the tricky curves of the mountain roads, guiding them both back to civilization, Jill sat in the passenger seat. She watched her father drive and ate the tuna sub.
Jill accompanied me on one of my TV trips to Vancouver. We stayed in the spare room at her parents’ apartment. It was at some point on that trip—probably over dinner with Jill’s parents at an oyster place in Gastown—that we decided to move to Vancouver together.
I phoned the producers of the Canadian TV show I worked on the next day. I asked if I could work for them full-time. They said yes. The wheels were in motion.
Jill and I returned to New York and began winding down our lives in NYC. We scheduled goodbye dinners with friends. We fantasized about our new life together in Canada. The vulture of gloom? The one that perched on my shoulders and made me flee subway stations in terror? The vulture’s days were numbered now.