I am thrilled to report I am back home from work with MISSION ACCOMPLISHED! Therefore, I am going to reward myself with a recap of the wallowing I was doing of my Seattle memories for a couple weeks recently.
I dumped a husband, a job, and about 12 inches of hair, and pointed my Toyota west on Labor Day weekend 1991. I lived in 4 different places in 5 years, had yellow blonde hair (initially by accident and then on purpose) for 3 of those years, and learned a lot about rock music - like that the "in" folks didn't call it grunge for one thing. As a lifelong flannel lover - I fit right in!
The day I drove over the pass and headed toward Lake Washington, I was overcome with the feeling that I was home. I had never laid eyes on Seattle before, so I had no idea where this feeling came from but I continued to feel that way the whole time I lived there. Sometimes, when I fly in to visit and see the Sound or Mount Rainier for the first time, I still feel that tug. If there is anything to the belief in past lives or reincarnation, I am quite certain I must have had a prior tie to the Pacific Northwest.
I went through many phases when I lived in Seattle. First was just kind of proper and professional. Then bright and shiny objects started to catch my eye and I started accessorizing big time. The peak of this phase even had me in fake fingernails which was quite a game changer since I am a lifetime nail biter and am very hard on my hands as evidence by all the scars and dings. Remember Man Hands on Seinfeld? Yeah, something like that. I wore bright clothes and short skirts and high heels. And then I got tired of all that and let the blonde hair speak for me and went back to way more casual dress and dumped the accessories.
One of my favorite memories of Seattle was a place called the ReBar. My roommate at the time took me there for the first time and it was very much an "anything goes" bar with great dance music and good beer including my all time fave Widmer Hefeweizen. Much of the bar staff were cross dressers and while that was very offputting for my brother in law when he visited, I loved how having any and all people welcome (except the close minded) made it so much more relaxed and fun. Dance with whom you like and just enjoy it. And great people watching! I loved every night at the ReBar and am grateful to have had such cool friends to experience it with.
I never liked gardening or really even the outdoors that much in the midwest - bugs and 100 degrees and humidity kind of puts a damper on the enjoyment of digging in the dirt. Seattle was awesome! No bugs (except fleas, to which I am allergic, but which can be avoided by wearing crew length socks when gardening because they can't jump any higher than that) and rarely temps over 80. And everything grows! It was glorious and outstanding.
My friends were very into music. In the late 80s and early 90s, every guy you ever met was in a band. My roommate's boyfriend went to high school with Mike McCready from Pearl Jam and I dated a guy once who was in a band called Rototiller. My friend and I went to hear Rototiller once - her comment was "it sounds like 3 guys playing 3 different songs". I don't remember what they sounded like - I just thought the whole "I'm dating a guy in the band" experience was a trip! Once, my roommate dated a guy, and a guy friend of mine and I went along on a double "date" with them. My guy friend almost started a fight with the other guy over the other guy's claim that Bon Jovi was as good a band as ... and the comparison band escapes me. Probably The Who or something. Never saw my friend as mad as he was that night. But I can't hear Welcome to the Jungle without hearing my roommate and my guy friend slaughter Axl's wailing while driving around Seattle.
I learned a lot about myself in Seattle. I learned to let go of people who had let go of me. I learned that I was perfectly OK by myself and, in fact, often enjoyed being alone. I learned so much about diversity and how much I love hearing stories about people's lives. Most of all I learned to be true to myself - no more putting on one persona for some people and another for others. I am so grateful to the people I met during my five years in Seattle. I am grateful that I had the opportunity to go and do what I did. I am grateful that I didn't get pregnant during my first marriage, so I was free to go.
There will be more...one day I'm sure I'll learn to post photos with my posts and can show off some of my "looks" during the Seattle years. The culmination of my Seattle wallowing came last weekend when I found myself watching the documentary Pearl Jam 20. When I heard Chris Cornell and Eddie Vedder singing together on a Temple of the Dog clip, I just about came out of my chair - I hadn't heard those songs in years and years. Must find that CD...
And now I'm going to read a book - The Scottish Prisoner by Diana Gabaldon. Point of interest: My two all time favorite series are the Outlander series by Diana G and Harry Potter...