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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Free-spirited adventures in Seattle with my BFFs (a photo blog, of course)

When I travel or have anything big going on in my life, I like to do a photo blog to catch up with my friends and readers. (For example, here's a photo blog about my spring projects. Here is the beginning of a week's worth of wedding photo blogs. And my five-part I WANNA BE YOUR JOEY RAMONE tour photo recap begins here.) I also partially do it as a scrapbook. I don't journal or put together photo albums the way I used to even though I never thought I'd let the digital version of those activities dominate my life so much. But it has. I guess that's why blogging is really personal for me and why my entries get so long and in depth sometimes... and why sometimes I feel like I go on streaks where I don't have anything to blog about because either interesting is going on or I have to remind myself that my blog is not my diary and I probably shouldn't share everything (though I'm terrible about that actually. You'll find me complaining about my cat's diarrhea problems quite a bit lately on twitter. Sorry about the TMI.)

Last week I was on my annual Seattle trip. In case you haven't heard, I am absolutely in love with Seattle and until I can afford to move there (like one of my lucky lucky fellow MTV Books authors who just got seriously the most gorgeous cover ever for her forthcoming book WHEN THE STARS GO BLUE. Seriously how eye-popping is that cover!!!), I visit once a year. Oh yeah and last year there was a photo blog for that....

This year something about the trip felt different, like I wasn't sure how I was going to blog about it or even what to tell people about my trip. I've been to Seattle so many times I know exactly where I want to visit (Pike Place Market every morning for either fresh fruit or a vegan cinnamon roll; Capitol Hill, the U-District, and Ballard for shopping; The Central, The Comet, and Nite Lite for drinks; Bamboo Garden, Araya's, Mama's Kitchen, and Roy's for dinner; and of course Viretta Park or the we fondly call it, Kurt's Park, the park next to the house where Kurt Cobain killed himself that is like an unofficial memorial site to him) and though I always find new adventures (this year we went to the Washington Arboretum, the Museum of History and Industry, the Japanese Tea Garden, and checked out the Georgetown neighborhood which led to more must-visit eating and drinking spots to add to my list), every time I go it feels more and more personal. Like I'm just going to hang out with an old friend (yes, I am personifying the city) and I almost don't want to talk about it, I almost can't explain the good times we had.

And this year the feeling intensified because I went with two of my best friends in the world Jenny (who does a fabulous job on my website I must say) and Eryn. We don't live in the same city so when we travel together or visit each other approximately once or twice a year that is all we see of each other. And there is something about these girls that makes me feel like I'm in high school again.... well, no, when I was in high school, I was all angsty and awful... they make me feel like how I thought high school should be, all goofy sleepovers and inside jokes. In fact it feels like our whole trip was this big inside joke about partial holidays (when I objected to a security guard saying it Easter was a national holiday because "what about separation of church and state," he said "oh uh errr it's a partial national holiday"), chickens and Martha Washington (there was an anime convention in town, people were dressed up really really strangely. A friend later told me that the chicken might have been an emu because I guess there is an emu-like creature in Final Fantasy? But I still have no explanation for Martha Washington), fashion changes and things being really intense.... like more intense than pulling your hair out of your shirt collar (I visited my friend Polly while I was in town and her three year-old daughter had some major gems that I couldn't help adopting), denim minis (I was on the quest for the perfect one) and *sigh* Asher (the artist that tattooed my friend Jenny and she totally fell in love with).

So yeah, I tell some of my other friends and husband these stories and they laugh a little, but honestly it feels like my trip was one big "you kinda had to be there" and I honestly like it that way. I had these great moments with my girl friends where I got to be totally myself and totally silly. I wasn't thinking about the writing I was struggling with (actually I had a big novel breakthrough the day before I left which helped me go in high spirits) or worrying about my writing career or my cats (in case you haven't heard, they have this ongoing case of diarrhea...).

So here are some goofy photos that probably won't make much sense, but they are proof of what a good time I had.

The shape of the fake meat at Bamboo Garden will bring out your inner fourth grader:
Denim Minis (can you guess which is mine?):
Impromptu America's Top Model style photo shoot in the building with the ATM in it...:
Until the security guard in the top right got mad and told us no photos were allowed. I guess it's a top-secret Starbucks location...

Impromptu secret dress-up session at a clothing store:
Rocking out at the Hard Rock Cafe:
Molesting Jimi Hendrix:
I know what the sign says, but we may disregard it...
Oh we can take a nice photo every once in a while:
Or we can be totally silly. We did three photo booth themes. This one was "make out":
But silliness aside, one thing we did get in tribute to our favorite city and even more importantly, our friendship, was get tattooed together.

Jenny was in love with her artist, Asher, but we didn't get a good photo:
Here I am, in the zone:
And the results, cherry blossoms for everyone:

As usual, we were sad to say goodbye to Seattle and especially to each other:
I promise a less goofy photo blog on my blog sometime soon. I did visit a really interesting place with my friend Polly, a beach where homes crashed down in a mudslide fifteen years ago and the remains are still there. It's quite surreal. So I'll have that and more tattoo pics and nature-y pics and of course the standard tourist shots like these upcoming this week:

But now that you have seen my goofy friend pictures (and probably take me wayyyyyyyy less seriously than you used to, but that's a good thing), tell me about your friends like Eryn and Jenny who make you feel like the ultimate free spirit. What kind of adventures have you had with them?


Jan Blazanin said...

I would love to have an all-girl adventure, but my friends are tied up with their families and jobs--not that families and jobs are a bad thing. I keep hoping someday one of them will break free and we can take off like you and you friends did. Glad you had fun!

Barbara Caridad Ferrer said...

I love that I'm recognizing so many of the places you went. I'm sorry we missed each other, but I was actually in Austin that weekend. NEXT TIME, doggone it!