drums, poodles, parking meters and the port

August 19, 2010 |  Category:   life travels

Pennies are worth something in Olympia. If you stick one in a meter, you get 15 minutes worth of parking. Some meters will even give you the first 16 minutes free. Not 15, but *16*. I thought it might feel weird to walk around downtown Olympia, but it wasn’t weird at all. I didn’t time trip or get stupidly nostalgic like I normally do. It was rather refreshing to just walk around without feeling sentimental, like I had just walked down that street last week. I wonder what this means.

So when we got off the plane yesterday early evening it was quite warm. We had caught the tail end of that heatwave and the weather felt just like it did coming from New York, which was a bit disorienting for some reason. We woke up this morning to 60 degree temps, though. I was freezing. I had long sleeves and a hoodie on and I was still freezing. I don’t think I’ve felt this cold in about 4 months. I lamented over the fact that I didn’t throw in that cashmere sweater that was in the “maybe” pile when packing. Gah.

We spent the day acclimating ourselves to the time change and making plans for the day. We made a visit to one of our old college music teacher’s house in the woods near campus. Peter teaches electronic music and audio engineering. His house is full of craziness: a mess of guitars, amps, cables, keyboards, mixers, and usually a poodle -this time a spunky poodle puppy. Mia remembered that he had a full drum kit up in the music studio so she headed up there as soon as she got in through the door (by the way, it’s so funny that the first thing the girls will do when entering any house is take off their shoes, even if the house is not shoe-free). The girls weren’t shy about banging away at the drums, like super loud. He also has really random things laying around his house, like slingshots (which he taught the girls how to use), weird stuffed animal toys that fart when you squeeze them, a 5 ft rubber snake, and this bucket air puff maker. It’s a total fun house for kids. In his yard are these wild, rambling alpine strawberry bushes. You pick the tiny berries right off the plants and pop them in your mouth. Among many things in his vegetable garden, the girls picked swiss chard leaves and asparagus. And just as we do at every visit, we talked about how old we’d gotten and how long ago it was when he was our teacher, showing us how to use Arps and Buchlas and sequence tracks.

Our first day in Washington ended with a walk in the port at dusk. The whole town, located right on Puget Sound, smells of saltwater. Seagulls overhead signal that you’re right on the water. Whether it is Pacific or Atlantic, it reminded me of how important it was that I live near water. I’ll always want to live near the ocean.

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  • mau August 19, 2010 at 3:48 am

    what lovely photos! glad you’re enjoying it.

  • Caddy August 19, 2010 at 6:45 am

    Your pictures are lovely as always. I’d love to live near the water as well. I go to the beach every summer and there’s something about that first glimpse of the ocean that is just so healing.

    When I worked on the 31st floor of the tallest building in my city (and for miles around) I use to be able to see for all the way to the oceanfront two cities away. It was great watching the ships go by while making a phonecall. 🙂

  • jenna August 19, 2010 at 10:35 am

    wow, so beautiful – it looks like a great adventure. love the photo of your girls in the chard “jungle”

  • Jasmine August 19, 2010 at 1:36 pm

    Jenna, such lovely photos. That last picture in particular. Oh, and Mia is playing the drums with such enthusiasm!

  • stephanie August 19, 2010 at 1:37 pm

    awesome pictures … especially the chard one!

  • gizella August 19, 2010 at 4:02 pm

    wow! i love that home in the woods…and your little elfin children looking so happy. I hope you have such a relaxing vacation, all of you

  • ChantaleP August 19, 2010 at 8:46 pm

    What an amazing shot the last photograph is! Love it. Mia looks so freaking cool and natural in that pic on the drums! Gonna get her some lessons? I also love the ocean but I guess I’ll have to make do with the St Lawrence river.. : ) Looks like your trip is starting off wonderfully..

  • Dana Galatzan August 19, 2010 at 10:49 pm

    Beautiful photos!!! lovely family, congratulations!
    <3 <3 <3 <3

  • bronwyn August 19, 2010 at 11:09 pm

    I love the chard shot. I feel the same about living near the ocean. And omg – 15 minutes for a penny. I only get 10 minutes for a quarter!

  • Michelle August 20, 2010 at 8:21 am


  • Jenna August 20, 2010 at 4:03 pm

    Michelle, haha, so funny. You are right. Forgot to mention the poodle. Stuck that in there now…

  • Michelle August 20, 2010 at 8:07 pm

    Ah, good. I can sleep, now!