The dogs were boarded and the neighbors had instructions on cat and plant care. It was time to go.
We had a late afternoon flight and decided to take the shuttle bus to the island of my childhood home instead of renting a car.
We got in late, the boys opting to head to bed after greeting their grandma and plunking their suitcases down in their room. The rest of us stayed up talking. Due to COVID, it had been almost two years since we had seen my mom.
The next day we stayed island-side, strolling around the downtown and reminiscing on previous visits.
I breathed deeply of the salty air and absorbed the seagull sounds and lapping water.
As I always do when visiting my mom, I found myself drawn to the three and a half acres surrounding my childhood home, a space that still holds for me imaginary lands and a lifetime of memories.
I took so many pictures: decaying wooden fence posts, many colored grasses, gnarled trees – some wild and some more domesticated having been my former climbing trees, producing fruit for our family as well.
The next day we headed into Seattle. I had discovered that my mom had never been to the top of the Space Needle and so that, among other adventures, awaited.
I took way too many pictures of fish, my favorite one being the serious, long-nosed fellow with the intelligent stare.
At risk of being mocked for my many fish pictures, I snapped one of my mom with the boys.
I have never lived in Seattle, but have visited enough that I have mostly stopped taking pictures of the iconic places. The cityscape and flowers from our wander about of Pike’s Place is all you get.
Our day ended back at the hotel where Carter checked out the pool briefly before we all got some shuteye.
The next day, after breakfast, we went up the Space Needle. The clouds had cleared and we had a beautiful view all around. The glass floored floor, which rotates a full rotation every 45 minutes, was trippy.
Carter took a time-lapse video over about 20 minutes where the cars below quickly jerked to stops and starts and the gold, oddly shaped elevators tiptoed up and down the spine of the Space Needle. The rushing forward of time.
Next we headed to Ballard to do a self-guided tour of the Ballard Locks. We had done the full harbor tour that included the locks in previous years, so we enjoyed walking the park and viewing it from the ground. The museum was interesting as well.
The rest of our trip we spent on the island allowing the slowness of island time to wash over us. One evening Husband and I drove the short distance to Ebey’s Landing to watch the fog roll and the sun set.
We went back the next day for a beach walk that took us around the jutting out of the land, to the salty lagoon hidden behind.
No need to go far, just down the road, for picturesque views.
The boys enjoyed picking edible treasures from my mom’s garden – peas, carrots, currents, blueberries – just coming on.
And then, just like that, it was time to go. Husband and I headed back to Phoenix while the boys, lucky them, stayed on an extra week to have special time with their grandma.
The shuttle got us to the airport well before our flight so Husband and I partook in an expensive drink or two.
We have been back for several days. The boys check in with phone calls and texts.
The pets are happy to have us back, but they know something is missing. It is quiet without the boys. Too quiet.
I am so glad to have been able to travel, to visit my mom and share time with her. I can’t wait to do it again.