The reality of life changes sometimes doesn't hit you until you're right in the midst of them, no matter how far in advance you plan. I'm in Seattle right now -- not for a visit, but for good... well, at least for the foreseeable future. This morning, I took a final stroll through the Jack London Square farmers' market with Lav on a spectacular, sunny day. When she dropped me off at the airport, I tried to keep a light-hearted attitude -- first, to keep her unemotional, but later, to keep my own emotions in check. Wow, is it really "goodbye" to the Bay Area? Am I really doing this relocation of my own choice?
Waves of intense feelings sat at the edge of my psyche -- predominantly fueled by the thoughts of being apart from my wife for four months (except, of course, for weekends and our vacation to Greece in April)... yeah, basically that part of the whole deal is pretty brutal, and makes it relatively unbelievable that I'm actually here.
But, on the plane flight over, I also found myself uplifted by the excitement of new opportunities to come... the new job, a new city, new personalities, new challenges, and hopefully even new successes. The beauty of Seattle is so striking on the final approach right before landing, with the sun glistening off the water and illuminating the lush, green landscape. Suddenly, I'm filled with the same intense optimism that made me want to take this job and make this crazy change to our lives in the first place.
On to food... Dinner tonight, as I'm writing this, finds me at Black Bottle in Belltown. I'm enamored with my glass of comfortably casual Cotes-du-Rhone, and sating myself on the perfectly cooked, velvety tender hangar steak, served with grated daikon and a salad of cucumber, scallions, watercress and fantastically peppery shiso, dressed lightly in sesame oil and rice vinegar. To my right, a crusty flatbread of prosciutto and bechamel. I'm liking this place a lot, from the sexy, industrial filament light fixtures to the stylish but casual urban crowed filling the place with life and energy on an otherwise subdued Sunday evening. Yeah, this feels right. I know we're here for reasons that go beyond my job, and reasons that may not even be in our control. I'm looking forward to seeing the full potential and outcomes of those reasons unfold. Yes, Seattle is definitely different than the Bay Area, but within its attributes is a thread of familiarity that helps me already feel at home.