In the cold November rain


One of the things one does when planning an overseas move as we are is to say goodbye to friends and family. Not that we don’t expect to ever see them again, but chances are it will be quite a while.

My family, those who will still claim me, anyway, consists of my daughter. She lives in Chicago, and we had an opportunity to visit her this week. Unfortunately, it was not a time that worked out for her, having just gotten back from a trip to Puerto Rico to celebrate her husband’s birthday. So we’ll make a trip out there another time.

Instead, we went west. Among Linda’s family, the largest concentration of relatives is in Seattle. So, here we are.

Seattle in the fall and winter can tend to be a little damp. That’s what it’s known for, after all. It’s beautiful, but not exactly outdoor fun-in-the-sun weather. Although yesterday, the rain stopped and the sun was out all day, and it’s supposed to stay out for the whole weekend before the sog starts again on Monday.

We’re staying with Linda’s sister and brother-in-law at their home on Mercer Island with a beautiful view of Lake Washington and the mainland to the west. That view is particularly pleasing when the sun is out.

But so are other areas around here. So yesterday, after Linda finished giving her music lessons online, we went for a short drive.

We saw Snoqualmie Falls, got some beautiful shots (when the mist cleared enough to actually see it), and went for a short hike to see another falls, the name of which I failed to get. It was almost otherworldly being among the forest of gigantic trees covered in moss, and I got some nice pictures there, too. By the way, it was in this vicinity that I took the photo that I used on the cover of First Light. (I know, I know, the story took place in Colorado, but – well I’m not going to say too much and give it away. No spoilers from me!)

Today, we’ll do a little more sightseeing, then tomorrow, we’ll start visiting other relatives, Linda’s nieces and nephew, one-on-one.

Linda didn’t want to have a big family get-together, because it’s so hard to actually visit with everyone. People tend to separate into groups, and you realize after it’s over that you didn’t get to talk to this one or that one.

Instead, she wanted to just do face-to-face visits, to be able to actually spend a little quality time with each one of them. So we have plans during this coming week to have dinner with each one of them, and their families.

Being an introvert, I’d feel a little intimidated asking to do that. I’m not much of a conversationalist, unless you get me on one of two or three different topics. I often end up feeling like people were kind of disappointed with me. Whether they were or not, I know that’s mostly my own insecurities digging at me, built up over pretty much my whole life.

But Linda’s more outgoing and loves people, and what’s more, people love her. So she’s really looking forward to it, and I am too, because I was lucky enough to marry into a really good family. They’ve always made me feel welcome, part of the family.

Or, maybe they just had low expectations.

(Come on, that was just my self-deprecating humor. How could anyone not like me?!)