©2021 Michael Raven
I finally got confirmation from one of my cousins that she, her husband and (most importantly) her corgi are indeed willing to put up with me for the full five evenings I had planned to stay in Seattle this coming January, so I finally hunkered down and started booking flights and a short rail trip from the Minneapolis/St. Paul area to Seattle, then rail to Portland for another five nights in that city before flying back home.
If you recall, I had earlier thought I would take the rail as my main form of transportation for this excursion, but was turned off by the lack of connectivity (as a writer, I prefer to have some connectivity for the purposes of backups on the web, never trusting on-board memory to not fail at the worst possible moment — I’m old school that way). That, combined with the cramped roomette I wanted for the 36 hour trip to and from the area, with no meaningful security to prevent theft of my personal items for premium prices, combined with the fact that the food options on the train are essentially microwaved pre-cooked meals (at premium prices). And I started to get turned off by the idea, especially when I saw that I could cover my whole trip via airplane for a third the price of the rail trip. Even with two more nights in a hotel, one with a kitchenette in it so I can cook my own meals to save on eating out, I am paying less than I would for the rail tickets alone.
/end summarization of previous post
So, having gotten confirmation from that cousin, I booked all my lodgings and transportation. Now I just need to find out more about how to navigate Portland to get to the airport and to other places in between and I should be set.
Again, I’m not aware of anyone reading on the ol’ blog that might live in either city (or near it), but I’m always up to meeting up if you do and want to share a cup of coffee near Pikes Market or near the Pearl District (Portland). My timeframe is mid-January, if that proves to be of any interest to anyone reading this.
The old part of me wants to dig in and start planning out the trip, but I think I will resist the urge, other than to find out how to get around Portland. My admittedly vague plans have already been disrupted by my cousin offering to pick me up from the airport when I had every intention of riding the light rail to her neighborhood and walking. So, it seems pointless to pursue a plan anyway. I do have an uncle in Seattle who wants to settle up with me or make amends or something, but he doesn’t know about the trip yet and I plan to make anything with him a short visit — he’s a recovering drug addict who (I think) feels bad he only saw me for 2-3 hours the whole time I lived in Seattle and I think he regrets choosing his former lifestyle over spending more time with me. Being a recovering alcoholic myself, I understand the urge to make those kinds of amends, although they are scant needed.
I want to get lost for a while and over-planning prevents that kind of thing. It is why I am spending as much time in Portland as I am in Seattle, although Seattle has the bigger psychological pull for me: I need to get out of this head of mine and, having familiar places and family to take up my time in Seattle will only prove to be a distraction from the real goal of this trip, which is to get lost and forget who I am for short time.