It's a rainy saturday and I receive a call early in the morning from a friend who has recently moved back to Seattle. I haven't seen him since he got back and although I didn't have a thing to do today I couldn't commit to hanging out with him. I won't say I'm in a depression, but honestly I haven't been able to spend time with anyone for more that 30 minutes. I've been wondering if it's the weather change. I'm not used to the seasons, having lived in a perpetual summer for the last 5 years, and I keep worrying that as the seasons change I have to hurry up and do things before I'm shut in for the entire winter. It's silly, but I can't help myself. I'm sure next year it will be easier, but for now it's a bit stressful and my anxiety is in full swing.
So I'm depressed, not able to hang out with anyone,don't want to stay in my house all day, and it's pouring down rain; what better day to go see my old neighborhood! A mixture of melancholy, sadness, memories and happiness always comes over me every time I take that left turn onto Lakeridge Drive and start the long drive down the street I grew up. It's approximately 5 miles long, and I swear to you I knew everyone who lived on that street.
My first stop is the park my friends and I would play at. During the summer I would spend every day swimming in the lake. I can remember waking up early in the morning and riding my bike down to the park for a swim. I was the only one there and the lake was so warm and the early air so chilled that there was steam coming up from the water. During the winter we would ride our bikes in the mud left over in the drained lake, coming home so dirty that our parents would spray us off with the hose before we were allowed in the house. Of course, the park was locked. Nothing else had changed, and of course a little lock wasn't going to stop me from getting in.
I contined on to my childhood home. I had been here in the last year, so I knew the condition of the house; such a shame. I loved this home, and although moving into it was a surprise for me (I had gone to live with my great-grandma for the summer and when I returned I had a new dad and a new home) I immediately fell in love with it. It was painted white and the shutters had little red hearts. My bedroom had a closet with a false back and behind that door was a hidden playroom that had sloped walls. The backyard was like a forest with large huckleberry bushes and little pathways through the trees. My fondest memory was a waterfight my mom started with my friends and me. The whole house was soaked and all my friends thought I had the coolest mom.
This used to be my bus stop in elementary school. I'm not surprised that it's overgrown, I'm surprised it's still even there! It's on a corner lot, three blocks up from the lake and it's not developed at all. I used to paint it every 3 weeks because I couldn't stand the graffiti and I thought it brought down the neighborhood. Yeah, kids didn't like me much then either.
I'm so proud of this photo. I went down to Jinks Park, passed the old peacock farm that is now a housing development ,and walked through the (again) locked gate to the boat launch. This park used to have a large metal rocket ship that you could climb up into and look out over everyone in the park. The rocket is gone now and in it's place is a very strange looking purple triceratops. I love shooting a stormy sky and I lucked out as the lake was the same color as the sky. It turned out exactly as I had hoped.
I drove over to another park, but the rain and the wind were so bad that it was near impossible shooting conditions. I decided to head off the hill and drive by my old high school. Besides the stadium now being sponsored by a Chevy dealer, it looked exactly the same. It was strange how the memories would come over me with every turn. I remembered so many little things about growing up there that I was actually surprised. I've never been one to remember many things.
I found myself on the railroad tracks. I'm not really sure why, I never spent much time on them and as a kid we were told so many horror stories about playing on them that we feared the tracks. I really liked the color and the lines and the way they seemed to go on forever.
Many of the hikes I go on have a forestry marker when you reach summit so it was a really cool find to see this Burlington Northern survey marker. It made me feel like I was actually on an adventure. I found the things that I did take pictures of interesting. What was supposed to have been an outing to my old neighborhood turned into something completely different...per usual. Still, it's funny how I'm interested in shooting different things than I originally thought I'd be drawn to.
When I finally walked back into my apartment tonight I realized I needed to do some changing. I proceeded to spend the next 4 hours rearranging my furniture, hanging pictures and making my place look completely different. Casey dropped by and after 30 minutes I realized I'm still not ready to spend time with people. God love him though as he put up with my crankiness and made fun of me for it, which was just what I needed.
I still kicked him out.
So new hair, new apartment, new outlook? Eh, probably not. But it was a good day. I think this post was mostly for me as my own cathartic outlet, but if you read this far thank you; you are a good friend.