Tag Archives: city life

The joys of apartment dwellings

Here I am, pushing my way into a new novel, and like all project beginnings it takes quite a degree of commitment to stay focused, when there is a lot of white space on the screen and not nearly enough little black letters. In my writing, there is strength in numbers, as I tend to write more than I need and then winnow it down in the rewriting process. I also didn’t like being at school when there weren’t enough people around, like in the afternoon when most folks had left, so maybe I just feel more comfortable in crowds than the average person.

And even so, I have my limits. Some things, like the persistent plucking of an errant guitar string, will get on my nerves after not too long a time. Too bad the inept musician lives right upstairs. Read More…

World capitol of rain and clouds

Ah, Seattle. When first I spied you in the summer of 2005, you gave me day upon day of warm sunshine, making it seem as though your tendency toward rain was all myth and bunk. It was a wonderful romance we had, and I’ll never forget it.

Sunny Seattle

Sunny Seattle

Yet like so many flings begun without thought for the long-term, we soured, and this time, you’re grouchy, distant, mad about something you won’t communicate. And you rain, rain, rain, barely getting into the high 70s, so that I feel your chill down to my bones. Where did we go wrong, Seattle? How could I have offended you so much that you feel this is your choice, to be so unforgiving? I wanted to live in your confines; your state gave me the other corner instead. I’m doing the best I can, honoring your lakes and your downtown, reveling in your curvy streets and dynamic nightlife. I’ve attempted to support your economy as a faithful visitor, and if you’re a little nicer to me I promise I shall return many times. Unless that’s not what you want.

View from Lake Washington

View from Lake Washington

Don’t push me out, Seattle. Let’s try to start over.

It’s been great, weather notwithstanding, to be back here, visiting an old friend from graduate school, and making little forays into the city. My bad knee is definitely hampering me too much, but I’m doing what I can and I certainly look forward to the day when I can run around a city again, sniffing out the fun offerings and things to see. 

Susanne is out on the other coast at a conference and we’ll rendezvous tomorrow at the airport before heading back to Wallyworld for its annual Fair and Frontier Days. Insert picture of Susanne sneezing at all of the livestock, and heck, maybe we’ll head out of town again and do some exploring at a few of the local apple and pear vineyards. I sure would love to bake a fruit pie and try to make the kitchen feel more like home.

Getting from these separate corners of the state — and there’s a whole lot of nothing in parts of the middle, for sure — is mostly achieved via one mountain pass, which shuts down frequently in winter. It’s not exactly reassuring to see “Chain Tie-On Area” signs and “Grade 5% next 2 miles.” The road in summer seems straightforward enough, though I wouldn’t chance it without brakes you’re sure will work well. And it’s a great view, though I don’t think that’s Mount Rainier we can see off to the west, but some other less tall peak. I need to research that.

I wandered around town yesterday, amused that there’s a neighborhood here called Capitol Hill. They’re very proud of their neighborhood name, and it must have some cache, because you see it everywhere.

 

Trader Joe's

Trader Joe's

Later I drove down to the Pike Place Market, looking for some fun window shopping, but primarily looking for a parking spot under $10. It was not to be found in the walking distance I can currently handle. And I’m sad to say that Dilettante Chocolates has closed its Capitol Hill location, but only temporarily as it opens a new shop down the street next month. Still, I need to procure some on this trip, so I’ll venture out to the one downtown later today. 

In the afternoon I met up with my friend and we shared a bit of ethiopian take out at park on Lake Washington. In the east nobody would be out in the water in weather like this — we love our warm Atlantic, even if it does produce awful hurricanes and tropical storms. The Pacific just never seems to heat up over here. But hey, native Seattle-ites will run down the feet-slicing rocky shores, climb up onto a floating dock, and springboard off into the icy water, loving every minute of it. I look on in horror and amazement. And once again feel like I’ve ventured into some foreign country over here. Everyone is so used to needing their black leather jackets and faded jeans they don’t actually change into something else when the temperature is 95F. They just go about their business sweating their asses off, and man, it has got to produce some funky leather smells after a while. So perhaps a dip in the frigid lake works for them after that, who knows. But the water looked pretty, and I really like it when busy cities have their leisurely parts. And Seattle seems to have plenty.

 

Two boys with Pith helmets

Two boys with Pith helmets

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