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Strange Morning

Last night I dreamed about moving. All night I was apartment hunting, and being disappointed by what I found. Either nothing was being sold in the neighborhoods we thought would have vacancies, or the homes available were more like tents or shacks and always shared with an old lady in her nightgown, smoking at the kitchen table. I don’t know why. It was a long night.

I tried to go back and find a fun blog from many moons ago to post today, but all of them just made me cringe. At this time in 2007 I don’t like what’s happening. I mean, what’s actually happening is ok. I’m getting ready to leave Seattle again and drive down the coast with Maris to move to San Francisco, a city I had never been to. But I also know everything that is about to happen, the shitty apartment, the angst, the loneliness. And reading about my cluelessness is oddly painful. I’m sure it will be the same 10 year from this day. But I don’t know, maybe not like this.

Do any of you have those specific spans of time you actively cringe over? I wish I could totally forget January to June 2007. I had gone from being totally on top of my game, to being desperate and sad and lost. It’s such a major shift I don’t want to ever relive it. When I re-read bits from that time I’m immediately back there, I’m drowning in the feelings of being back there. I am embarrassed and angry and compassionate all at the same time about those memories. I could do without them.

I’m having a weird morning. Every day this week I’ve wanted to just stay in bed the whole time. Hibernate. But off to work I go. This weekend is not a three day weekend for me, though if anyone needed three days off at home – it would most definitely be me. But! I’ll see you guys on Tuesday (Kamel may make an appearance on Saturday) with more stories and photos and lalala… let’s hope I’m not sprinting through airports carrying my shoes on Monday.

16 Comments

  1. Oh man…my initial thought is Yes! Yes! there are quite a few times that I would love to erase from existence. But, on second thought, those times helped shaped the strong person that I’ve become, so I always decide at the last minute that I need to keep them. If nothing else but to remind me that sometimes shit gets tough, and somehow I manage to come out better for it.

    As a side note though – my husband and I are thinking abour moving out to Vancouver WA next year. I’ve been to Seattle for a week one time, and he’s never been out there. BUT! I loved it there, and CT is slowly killing every part of our souls. What are your thoughts on WA??? Maybe this wouldbe better as an email, and not a comment…

    • Vancouver, WA? I haven’t done too much there, although I did have some awesome ice cream there once. I love PDX, lots of good breweries, an AMAZING bookstore, and lots of cool boutiques to explore.

      You’re also not too far from Mt. St. Helens and the whole Mt. Adams region if you’re predisposed to explore the outdoors (and even if you’re not…because there’s tons of nice easy hikes along rivers in that area).

    • Ok, I’m going to be totally honest. When I think of Vancouver WA, the first thought that comes to mind is: Sad.

      Unless you are in Vancouver for a serious work reason and can’t stomach any kind of commute, I would not suggest living there. It is very small and very grey. But small is also really (REALLY) not my thing. But it’s not just the small… there are areas where I adore that are not big cities and Vancouver is not not not not not not not one. It’s also so close to Portland that I would suggest living there, or any of the Portland outskirt areas.

      I just killed your dream didn’t I? I smashed it into the ground. ahhh!

      • No dream smashing here! I’d rather an honest opinion. He just likes the idea of not having a state income tax in WA, and I like the idea of being close to Portland without actually living IN Portland. We are still open as to where we will actually move to settle down. I like the idea of smallish town living near a nice big city. I want a fenced in yard for my puppies, but I don’t want to pay $1500 to rent a 2 bedroom apt. We still have a lot to consider…but I’m glad you gave me your input! I’m willing to hear suggestions of your favorite spots in that general area!

        • Maybe renting in Vancouver (where it’s cheap-ish) and exploring before setting in somewhere could be the plan?

        • There are suburbs north of Seattle that are much more affordable (than living in the city), house-wise, with puppy yards! Easy access to downtown for fun times, but much cheaper and the traffic isn’t as crazy. My 2 cents!

          Also: I definitely have a cringe-inducing period in my past (honestly, several) that I’d rather forget. The first year I moved away from my hometown: lonliness, hard time finding job, lostness, no-friend-ness, going back to college where it was painfully obvious that I was 10+ yrs older than everyone around me. It’s painful even thinking about how depressed/lonely/lost I was. But, I guess it got me to where I am now.

        • The neighborhoods around Portland are actually very very livable and house-renting friendly. Claire (I’m summoning you Claire!!) will know more about the good neighborhoods but there are definitely cute homes with a fenced in yard everywhere. And OR has no sales tax. So that is a perk over WA.

          In and around WA you could also check out Olympia (The capital) there are really cute and very Pacific Northwest-y towns all around it. And also drivable to both Seattle and Portland for a Saturday trip. And yes (as mentioned) north of seattle is definitely a family friendly zone and really really beautiful.

      • Yay!!!! I was summoned and I arrived to flesh out this portland/vancouver discussion :)

        I spent 5 years living in portland during college and after and have ONLY the fondest memories of my life there- things are very affordable, both housing and activities – and there are SO many pockets of great neighborhoods with different personalities!

        That said, vancouver is across the river from portland – literally a 5 minute drive – its very very accessible – and there is a super conveniant mall between vancouver and portland on the river called Jantzen Beach (just keeping it real, we all need t know where a Target with no sales tax is!). I havent spent much time in vancouver but it is actually quite nice! It is basically an extension of Portland – minus the “no sales tax”. People both live/work in that area and do all sorts of commutting – thats fairly common.

        In general, I have tons of friends in portland that have had really good renting/buying experiences in terms of houses, apartments, condos, and duplexes all over that region (both city and suburbs) and I have a very good friend from college that moved to Vancouver SPECIFICALLY because they had bigger yards (they have a dog!) and it was closer to her husbands work. She absolutely loves it! But its probably bc she found a nice neighborhood :)

        Portland is a lot more spread out than the seattle area (they have less water boundaries) so there are tons of awesome sprawling neighborhoods that one wouldnt think would still be in the city limits and that cheap – but it is!

        Great neighborhoods that are affordable:
        Southeast (thats what its called, its amazing, I lived there! lots of yards and parks)
        North portland (also very affordabnle, some shady parts, but also a college neighborhood, so affordable, good schools and parks)
        Brooklyn (just past the SE hood)
        the NE neighborhood (theme, yep, directionally named hoods) – great place, beautiful homes, my aunt lives here, parks and yards, again!)

        Heres a cute little guide to portland neighborhoods:
        http://www.jolynne.com/suburbs.html

        I’m not big on suburbs – but the website also talks about those as well :)

        If you need any more tips or just want some help researching places – feel free to let me know! Happy hunting!

        • Also: Johns landing neighborhood is also good, but its NOT the same thing as st. johns – just fyi

          • also – you have a pretty good budget – and will even be able to find rental HOUSES for that much (or less) with a yard! the fenced yard will probably be your hardest standard to meet :)

          • Oh my goodness Lauren I’m so sorry to have hijacked your comments but – Ahhhh Claire thank you sooooo much!!! This is just the kind of info I have been looking for. I lived in southern CA for about 3 1/2 years from 2001-2004 and loved the west coast, but being away from family brought me back east eventually. My husband and I want to buy a house but won’t do it here in CT. We’ve been researching places to live and since we eventually want to end up out west, we figured let’s just skip to the end and get there once he finishes school this time next year. We’re just going to pack up and go, so knowing the good areas to initially rent is great info!! Then we can scope out where we want to buy our home :)

            I’m going to check out the link you posted too. Thank you again for all the help, we’re doing our research and getting excited about the possibilities that are waiting for us out there!!!

  2. I would have to revisit the old, locked up blog to tell you the exact time span, but I know that February-ish 2004 was an awful, awful time for me. Incredibly lonely and desperately poor. It needed to happen, for I am a much more complete and compassionate person because of certain painful things, but I don’t go mucking around in it very often.

  3. I was incredibly lucky and got to study abroad in Florence Italy my last semester of college. I graduated in December, but I had actually walked in the ceremony the prior spring. So, I rolled into Colorado with about $120 to my name (seriously). I ended up living in my aunt’s basement, deep in the suburbs, working at a movie theater (janitor with a degree!), with no friends, in the dead of winter. I went from the absolute best time of my life (four months in Italy), to the lowest point of my life literally overnight. Yeah, yeah, I’m stronger, and closer with my aunt because of that winter, but I really wish I hadn’t had to live it.

    • My dark time was in CO, too! Nothing against CO – I have several friends who LOVE being from/living there – but I still cringe when I hear anything about CO because, to me, it will always be my dark space!

    • This pretty much breaks my heart. Yup. I would want to sleep through that period as well.

  4. I could do without remembering most of my teenage years. Those were brutal for me, between emotional issues and my parents splitting up. My first semester of university could also use forgetting.

    At the same time, those experiences are part of how I’ve gotten to where I am, so I can’t complain too loudly about them.

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Who the hell is she?


Lauren

I am a writer living in Seattle and I believe that life is a grand adventure and only boring if you believe it to be. Plus! You don't need money to have fun.

I live with my husband, a photographer by education and a maker-of-video-games by trade, and a baby named gabe in an apartment on the hill.

I am romantic about most things and I cry... about almost anything. I tell stories to entertain you, I spread stories to keep you in the loop. I am not a grammar freak, but I do know how to spell it. I am exceedingly proud of my scrambled eggs and I really could eat an entire pan of cupcakes. If I met me, I would be my best friend. I tend to be irreverent.

If you would like to chat with me or see what else I'm up to you can follow me on Twitter (betterinrealife), on facebook, or email me at betterinrealife at gmail.


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