We just got back from a trip to Seattle (final wedding post coming, eventually. The whole compiling of the music has me being lazy) where we watched two people who mean the world to us get married.
The entire time I was there, staying at my friend’s house in beautiful Queen Anne my heart was bursting for Seattle. It was a typical Seattle fall weekend, meaning it poured rain the entire time, but I was in love. The first morning I lay in my friend’s home and listened to the rain patter on the rooftop and I felt like I was 18 again, falling in love with Seattle for the first time.
Throughout the weekend people asked how I liked Chicago and I’d do this weird face where it looked like I either was suffering from a stroke, or pooping my pants.
A friend at the wedding who lived in Chicago for five years screamed about how she loved it, just LOVED IT and I actually said to her, “Really?” I just couldn’t imagine ever being THAT in love with this place.
I think I’m suffering from a multitude of issues that are keeping me from loving Chicago as others do. On one hand this is now the third city I’ve lived in in four years that I didn’t get to pick myself. Adam and I never sat down one day while we lived in Seattle and said, “You know, Seattle is getting boring. Let’s move to Olympia!” No it was more like Adam got a job, I had no job, and I figured there was no better time than now to join him. What was I going to do, stay in Seattle where I had no job and soon, nowhere to live?
The move to Alaska was equally unromantic. We didn’t decide to go on the adventure, the adventure came to us. One day Adam came back from a work trip in AK where he was filling in for someone and oh, just happened to come home with a job. Three weeks after we got the news we were driving to Alaska to start our adventure. Two years nearly to the day after we arrived in Alaska Adam came home from work and said, “So I was talking to someone today in the Chicago office…” I began to cry. I knew that in a matter of weeks we’d be moving again.
Don’t get me wrong, I do not regret for a second journeying across this country with Adam. He’s my soul mate, my love, my best friend, and if he said tomorrow we were moving to Russia for work I’d say, “Ok!” Alright, I’d probably cry for a little, but then I’d be on board. Yet no matter how much I willingly take these adventures, no matter how wonderful they’ve been, no matter how lucky I am to have seen and done what I have, I have moments like this past weekend in Seattle where I want to scream, “ENOUGH. I WANT TO GO HOME.”
When I moved to Seattle at 18 I left Southern California and I never looked back. Sure, once in Seattle when we nearly broke a record for most consecutive days of rain I got a little nostalgic for California sun, but I didn’t ever ache for California, and I never will. California and I didn’t fit. It’s a lovely place, but I’ll never move back. Since California I’ve lived in Seattle, Olympia, Anchorage AK and now the burbs of Chicagoland, and only Seattle feels like me.
I love it all. From the people, to the closeness to the outdoors to the fact that rain and grey skies are what we’re known for. I love the way that if you go to the Washington coast you’ll be in a rain jacket and boots, not a bathing suit. I love the lakes that are literally everywhere, I love the pine trees, I love the way the Puget Sound is everywhere winding in and out of the landscape.
I love the way on a nice day Mount Rainier will peek out of the clouds and people can’t help but look. I love Seattle’s eco-friendly ways and their food scene. I love the University of Washington. From the sports to the fact that I believe it’s probably the most beautiful campus on the West Coast. I love Seattle’s quirky industry but also how it is home to some of the largest companies the world knows. I love the Space Needle and how I still can’t get enough of Pike’s Market.
I love swimming in Lake Washington in the summer and how Seattle often makes the top five for most literary cities. I love the architecture, the size of the city (not too big, not too small), and how in just an hour you’re in the middle of nowhere surrounded by green.
The love I feel for Seattle can go on and on and although I’ve never hated anywhere I’ve lived since Seattle, I’ve never found another place in this world that I’ve been able to say as many “I loves” about. I’ve walked away willingly from Southern California, Olympia Washington and Anchorage Alaska and never looked back, but Seattle, I just can’t seem to quit her.
And I’m not sure I ever will.