To Making the Move: Where and Why?
For those who don't know: I'm moving to Seattle! Pardon my français, but holy shit.
A little backstory:
I was the teenager that was always, "I am on a plane to as far away from here as possible the day after graduation!" Not because I didn't get along with family or was oppressed at home — but because I had the all-knowing mentality that teenagers often have, along with the "I'm so independent" attitude. You couldn't tell me what to do or how the world worked. I knew better.
Fast forward (what eerily feels like 100 years and the blink of an eye at the same time) to now and I realize how clueless I actually was back then. Turns out, Mom and Dad may have been right about a thing or two — imagine that! I never went away to school or even left the house I grew up in because I racked up a fair amount of credit card debt, and the Bay Area’s real estate costs are astronomical. Luckily, Dad and I quickly developed a roommate-style relationship around the age of twenty.
My quarter-life and his mid-life crises blew into town concurrently and somehow ended in us 'Freaky-Friday'ing roles. I became the parent and phrases like Did you clean your room? You need to take out the trash — I’m not going to tell you again! and Would it kill you to pick up after yourself? stopped sounding so awkward coming from my mouth and not his. Alas, after nearly twenty-seven years of living together, we’d had just about enough. It was time to relinquish his house and reign over my own.
Having had the “I need to get out of here” mentality for so long, I’ve obviously thought long about where I would live, what my apartment would look like and how amazing it would be to live on my own. It was first LA (courtesy of MTV’s The Hills), then the PNW (with some shame, because of Twilight), San Diego, Boston (for a boy) and even just around the Bay Area. It wasn’t until I was in Seattle a couple summers back, on a boat in Lake Union that it hit me — I was in love, and I was home.
The trip in which I fell in love was my first time to the Emerald City. Danielle and I were on a four-day PNW excursion to let-loose and blow off some steam (and honestly some money too.) We’d just spent two days in Portland and rode the train up to Seattle. Portland was fun, but when I stepped off the train, I felt like Kimmy Schmidt seeing New York for the first time... and also happened to be wearing the same sweater.
The natural soundtrack of heavy construction, seagulls and the city abuzz with traffic was both intoxicating and familiar. It felt like San Francisco. There are hills, tchotchke markets tucked everywhere and a mix of tourists and locals that appear from afar like oil and water. Being from the bay, I love The City — but I immediately knew Seattle had a leg-up on the ol' 7x7.
We did all the touristy things over those two days — shopped at Pike Place market, stuck Trident to the Gum Wall, explored on the Ride the Ducks Tour, gaped in awe at the Space Needle and Instagrammed at Kerry Park. Danielle knew just as much as I did without even having to speak about it that I had fallen head-over-heels.
Because I’m late for brunch and I’m starving — here are 10 random reasons why I decided to live in Seattle:
- Sunset over Puget Sound
- The views in every direction of snow-capped mountains
- A freaking volcano
- Gas Works Park and Lake Union
- Big city vibe without the cramped feeling or smell of urine
- Natural backdrops fit for even the most amateur of photographers
- Cooler weather and milder summers
- Tech with a little less ego
- New opportunities to (hopefully) bring me out of hibernation
- To prove to myself that I can do it
And to address the biggest comments/questions I’ve received thus far…
But it rains there ALL the time...
I enjoy the rain, freakishly more than other people. I pretty much only pull back the curtains and open the windows on rainy and/or gloomy days. The air always seems more fresh, and who doesn’t love the smell of rain? Sure, it may be different once it’s such a common occurrence, but something tells me I’ll survive. My pale-ass skin never matched California anyway!
Won’t you miss your family and friends?
Duh — but if I’ve learned one thing in this life so far, it’s that you have to live it for Y - O - U. I hold the people in my life very closely and it is difficult to imagine what the new normal will be — FaceTime over face time and planned visits over drop-ins; but I can’t let the fear of the unknown in being on my own keep me from fully living. What I adore about the people I love so much is that they all stand behind me in this decision. I have the best cheerleaders with me on this journey we call life.
How will you afford to live on your own in the city?
TBD. But I’ll work something out.
How are you getting all your stuff to Seattle?
Expert precision and incredible speed. I’ve got it all planned out, and it doesn’t involve a U-Haul. I don’t know that you’ve ever rented one of those suckers, but they are expensive! I couldn’t justify paying a couple thousand dollars for a box on wheels. I’m packing up my SUV and a utility van with as much as I can carry. We’re going to live the minimalist life for a week or two up there. (And by we I mean me and my other personality.)
Aren’t you anxious/scared/every other Xanax-inducing emotion?
Yes. I’m terrified! But I’m equally, if not more, excited. While I’ve toyed with this idea for quite a while, I didn’t actually make the decision and act until a couple weeks ago. I’ve signed my lease, thrown down the deposit and started ordering furniture. It’s all become very real, very quickly. I’m leaving the only place I’ve ever known in search of the unknown. It’s a very fitting way to wrap up my quarter-life crisis on my path of “finding myself” or whatever the yogis say.
About this series:
This over-dramatic moving series is brought to you by my anxiety-riddled move to Seattle. I'll be writing about the initial planning, the move and settling-in over the course of the next few months. To keep up with the big move and what happens next, keep an eye out for the special image in the header with the gold bar — or by clicking the “moving series” tab up top. Can’t wait to see where this road leads!