Vacations

Redwood Grove
First, this quote, which I read this afternoon and it’s stuck with me. I’m reading Nancy Mitford’s The Pursuit of Love.

But she was filled with a strange, wild, unfamiliar happiness, and knew that this was love. Twice in her life she had mistaken something else for it; it was like seeming someone in the street who you think is a friend, but not even very like him. A few minutes later the real friend appears in view, and then you can’t imagine how you could have mistook that other person for him.

Vacations

A few days ago it really hit home that I was going on vacation, and I hadn’t done much to prepare besides buy the plane tickets. As a contractor vacations are kind of stressful, especially if they are on the tail end of weeks of jury duty. 4 weeks of jury duty (2 full and 2 short): $105. w00t! But I’m able to manage this long weekend OK. Thank god it’s just Seattle. I’m looking forward to being offline, reading quite a bit, writing, and just being social and mellow. Seattle is sunny until 10pm right around now. I get to visit my favorite bakery: Macrina. It was a few blocks from my apartment, so I’d jog over every morning on the walk to work, and get a “morning rocket” muffin (warm bran with carrot and pineapple bits, gentle molasses taste) and a very fine double cappuccino, looking out at the sound and sharing a New York Times with a fellow businessperson. Then a mile walk along the water, through Pike Place, to the Tower, an oddly built metal tower painted to look like wood*. Take the elevator with a dishy elevator guy up to th 20th floor and walk to my office, which had, natch, 180 views of the sound. I suspect everyone living in Seattle has an equally wonderful lifestyle. OK so the point I’m making is I’m not that into vacations because I like to cultivate my life to be as beautiful as the vacation. Why leave SF when I love it so? Hmmm. And yet in the last few days I’ve recognized the mental space one puts oneself in a “vacation mode” and how it’s a good thing. Get away, change of pace, see old friends, etc. It is mental- but it’s also necsesary.

* Smith Tower was built by Mr. Smith – Smith Corona typewriters and a long rifle- and cost a million dollars. It’s made of steel, but painted to look like wood. Pretty amazing functional old building, with cute old bathrooms and the steel prevents it from getting mildewy like most Seattle (and SF) old buildings.

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