And we’re off! (Seattle, WA)

greg bem 01 - Seattle

My travels back to Asia start with Seattle, where I’m now “from.” I’ve been “from Seattle” for five years now, and I look forward to continue to be “from Seattle.”

I also look forward to travelling alone extensively. This is going to be the first time I’m on the beaten and unwalked paths by myself–a feat the many can’t claim they’ve ever done. Though I have travelled around North America in various ways, I typically enjoy my time with others. This is the first time I don’t have a dedicated other with me.

I also think it’s interesting to ponder what’s being left behind. No one is 100% ready to leave a given situation. I am excited to go to Cambodia once again, and the surrounding region, but part of me does not want to leave. Things I’ll be leaving behind include:

  • My partner, Natasha.
  • My room mate, Emiliana, and her two chihuahua puppies, Paco and Cookie.
  • My family, on the East Coast.
  • The plethora of other friends that surround my life and make it special.
  • The two libraries I work at, LWTech and North Seattle College.
  • The poets, writers, and artists throughout Seattle I can call “collaborators.”
  • My car and my bicycle, the latter I didn’t use very much recently.
  • The fine, fine Northwest summer.
  • Relatively fast Internet.
  • The Witcher 3.

Fortunately, I’ve got some good things on my plate coming my way:

  • Six nights in Vietnam, including 3 nights in Dalat.
  • A lovely job with the Wildlife Conservation Society.
  • Six books I’ve been meaning to read for months (a couple for years, actually).
  • Rendezvousing with countless friends I have missed since I left almost exactly a year ago.
  • A performance at Meta House.
  • The opportunity to run and learn from library and poetry workshops.
  • A visit from two very special American friends in late August.
  • Hopefully travels to and through Laos, and perhaps another stop in Singapore.

I really do not know what to expect. Part of me wants to take the tourist approach down a notch and simply enjoy my time in the sweltering heat. I’d like to mosey along, taking pictures, spending hours a day reading, not necessarily charged with “go, go, go” but I know this will be difficult to accomplish. My inner nature is, after all, significantly charged and inspired by cramming as much as possible in. Can I, perhaps, learn to chill out on this trip? Can I learn to savor it? After all, it’s going to be very short.

As I know there are going to be several following me, I will try to post to this regularly, and link out when I post externally. I do welcome all comments. If not via WordPress, then over email, Facebook, or otherwise. I feel the natural way to counteract any loneliness through solo travel is probably through the Internet. Hopefully I will get a chance to write a quick post during Hong Kong; otherwise, it will be in the safe confines of the first Vietnamese guest house I stay in.

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2 thoughts on “And we’re off! (Seattle, WA)

  1. Well I for one will be following your blog. I loved our Tukwila Revealed group and experience. Folks bonded and some have begun tossing around the idea of let’s do something together again, alongside comments about when Greg gets back. So blog on, friend! You are missed! and yet, we are all living vicariously through your experiences! Bring it on Greg, love and support all the way.

    1. Thanks, Syd! Your support and elevation really means a lot. I really do look forward to seeing you and working with you again. I also expect comments on this blog if you have comments to make 🙂

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