However, life in Seattle feels pretty surreal. As I wandered Pike's Market the second day in a row during work hours (on an errand yesterday and for lunch today) I came to the realization because although I have a job in the city and responsibilities, every single day feels like I'm on vacation if only for the twenty minutes I'm walking through downtown on my way home from work because I realize I'm in Seattle- the place many people, including myself, come to visit. And simultaneously it has managed to also make me feel at home. After spending three days in Idaho last weekend, I stepped off the light rail into the city and felt relaxed. The city, the people, and the skyscrapers that are the opposite of the rolling hills back home- it was soothing. Every day feels like a challenge as I leap through new hoops and learn new things as I go but I have truly had some of the most "full" days in my life. I'm learning the ropes of an office and understanding the fundamentals behind what makes it work. I'm gaining skills and finding my role. For the first time in so long, I actually feel sort of like I'm living up to and realizing my potential as I accomplish new things. The best part of my entire experience in Seattle, living, working, commuting, and navigating is that I'm doing it alone. And, there's knowing I made this happen for myself.
I've been too busy to blog and write out all of my adventures for the past few days but without time to document and only time to take pictures, I've sort of had time to absorb the reality that is my life for the next few months. I've taken mental notes of all the things around me and of all the things I want to write down but it's nice coming back to my computer to just sort of feel it sitting heavy in my head. It feels tangible, almost, sitting there in bulk. I feel lucky, and it's a warm contentedness that at the end of the day leaves me excited to wake up and do it again.
On Monday, my friend Nicole ventured with me to an island near Seattle where we spent the most perfect afternoon drinking coffee in the sun before making pesto pizza together and venturing out into the rain forest to explore. We found ourselves on a strip of beach overlooking North Seattle just as the sun was setting and it was splendid- here we were on a beach where we could see the city and yet it was completely silent. We took pictures and walked around for a solid hour before it got too dark. We sped to the ice cream shop and capped our evening with chocolate peanut butter oreo ice cream. It was a blast and Nicole and I are absolutely soul mates.