i have been thinking so much about the events in our lives that lead to other events and changes and so on. before you know it, you have a collection of a life, memories, heartbreaks, cracks + light. all of this has me thinking about my life here on the west coast, about my beginning here almost 9 years ago when karen and i hopped in her red nissan and drove 3000+ miles from tallhassee, florida to seattle just for the adventure of it. our friend clare had recently moved to seattle and wanted to show us its beauty and magic, so off we went, to find a piece of ourselves in the company of a very long roadtrip. it remains one of the best decisions i’ve ever made. to take the summer and explore the roads and hostels and sites of our country. we kept journals, listened to our mix tapes, drove one another nuts, and had the time of our lives. i had never been anywhere before, and i was completely taken by the west coast, especially the northwest with all its summer beauty and clean air. one year later, i moved to portland. had karen not asked for a travel companion that summer, i bet i would have never moved to the west. i’d still be in florida, maybe, with all the alligators, heat, snakes, and bugs. i don’t miss it. but i do miss my memories of highschool, college, and of course, my mom and stepfather who are still there. it all reminds me to always say yes to travel and adventure. it really does take you places.
looking back on the photos from that trip and from that time in my life, i’m feeling a little moody. affected. nostalgic. i was still in graduate school. living with friends. babysitting for money, still. dating. i was in the throws of growing up, and i loved it. loved all my friends. my independence. and all the free time. it was before the losing of ourselves to everything else. jobs. money. distance. marriages. the real growing up.
i don’t yearn for those times, as i’m incredibly happy now, but i do think about the girl in the picture in the back of the car with a friend who asked her to take a roadtrip to seattle and have a summer that would decide the future of where she lived which would then lead to all sorts of wondrous things including the losing of herself and then the finding of herself all over again. life is so cool.