This was the strangest trip to Seattle I’ve taken yet. We aren’t newbies to the area at all. This was Andrew’s fifth and my fourth trip out there….and he only gets one over me because of his interview weekend. We’re pretty familiar….or so we thought.
We know we want to buy a house in Seattle. We’ve been saving – and saving – and saving for just such an opportunity (though, honestly, we did expect that we’d be buying in the Midwest somewhere). The trouble is – – – – WHERE???
We love Seattle. It’s friendly and temperate and laid back. The homes are small and efficient and OLD. We live in a two bedroom condo in a historic district. Seems like a natural fit, right?
But we also live in an extremely walkable neighborhood, which is what we REALLY love about it. It’s hard to find that, not just in Seattle, but anywhere. Well, unless you have unlimited resources, which we don’t. <Lotto…anyone?>
The other kicker is that Andrew’s new job is on the east side of Seattle – across Lake Washington. So our more obvious choice of living in Seattle and deciding on a neighborhood gets more complicated. We are completely at war with ourselves – do we continue to embrace our love of urban, walkable, sustainable life? Or do we shift course and move to the suburbs – drive our car a lot more often, but have a shorter commute – and get a bigger house with a bigger yard and bigger storage area? We’re not having any more kids….maybe one more someday, but it’s not like we need a houseful of bedrooms…. But the suburbs have a lot of appeal, without doubt. Trails connect each area to nearby greenbelts. Newer homes have layouts that actually make sense and facilitate congregating with friends. But….they’re also missing a lot of what makes us…US. Or are they? Decisions, decisions.
Andrew has been set up with a fantastic relocation agency as part of his starting package. We got to take a house hunting trip – three WHOLE days of looking at houses. We were set up with an awesome realtor who knows her stuff and is steadily whipping us into shape. She’s sifting through our gobbledy gook and I’m confident that we’ll get this figured out. Thanks to my mom, who dropped everything and came up to stay with Evelyn for a few days, we were able to go full steam all day at Adult Pace. I had forgotten what that was like.
Three whole days of looking at houses was daunting. But you know what? It was fun. We visited friends and family in the area, which helped us realize that we’re not completely “starting over.” We visited old familiar haunts from previous trips. We explored new neighborhoods, which made us feel young again – or at least no older than 27. There were still some joints creaking and a discussion about mortgage rates, but whatever. We ate dinner at 8:30pm. EIGHT THIRTY P.M.!!!! Then we promptly passed out from exhaustion. Still. AND, no one cried at bedtime. Always a plus.
Yes, this trip was awesome. We are excited. We are ready for these changes. It’s time to shake things up a bit and navigate new waters. It’s good for us to challenge each other – to understand where the other is in life. It’s too easy to take each other for granted; to get on the treadmill and lose yourself in reruns of the Simpsons. Suddenly a decade has gone by…..and you can’t remember how it all started anymore.
It started like this. Just the two of us, making our way, creating our home. This time we do it as three, not two. Even better.