On Leaving: Seattle to NYC

Friday, August 26, 2011

A goodbye video I edited for the Washington Bus.

The time has come again for yet another one of my famous exits. The hours are counting down until my flight into hurricane-ready NYC and I am reflecting on every last moment of my summer in Seattle while simultaneously worrying about how my father and I are going to move me into the dorms in a city that is otherwise evacuating its residents. Since it has been quiet around the blog for the past month, those reflections are stored up in my mind, on my journal paper, and in photograph form awaiting upload. In the coming days, I will share all of these with you, dear readers, but for now I just want to give thanks.

When I returned from New York in mid-May, I had a month essentially to myself. I taught myself some marketing skills, spent some time with some amazing high school friends, and genuinely relaxed for the first time in months. It almost looked like I would have a typical Seattle summer - indulging myself in artsy learning opportunities and working through my bucket list of fun things on my own. That quickly changed when I started my job at the Bus.

As I've said in previous posts, my Fellowship with the Bus was honestly one of the best and most connective experiences that I've had in Seattle. For too long, I have felt that my hometown had nothing to do and little for me to get involved in; through the Bus, I have become more connected to this place than ever I could imagine. I have commuted to the city at all hours of the day and night, spent time with more amazing people than I thought possible, and explored enough events and locations to know the best and worst spots from here to Kirkland. In essence, I got exactly what I wanted: to connect back to the home that I thought I would never return to. And I am immensely grateful for it.

That feeling, that connection, makes this moment peculiar. I am sitting in a coffee shop on Capitol Hill contemplating my summer and all the new faith I have in Seattle in being a place I could spend a good deal of my life in. And yet I am leaving. Back to a city where I am a party of one, where I have had both my best and worst experiences, and where I can no longer communicate face to face with the people I have built strong ties to in the last two months. It is as surreal as it is exciting, as amazing as it is saddening.

I'm going to take over NYC this year. That is the energy that the Summer Fellows and my own new found strength has given me. This summer in Seattle has taught me that fun can be had even amidst tremendous amounts of work, and I am ready to take that philosophy back to Barnard. Tomorrow, I will touch down in the middle of this hurricane fearless and ready for the next big adventure. And this time, I won't forget to write about it.

Thank you again, Summer Fellows, for supporting me and giving me greater power than I already had invested in me. You have built for me a better home in the place I grew up, and I hope that you will keep in touch as we all move forward into the next year.