Sunday, August 5, 2012

Settling In

We finally got all moved in to this small town just north of Seattle.  At this time last year it's not at all where I was expecting to be (do you hear the sound of mariachis?), but now, after a couple of weeks, Edmonds seems like a natural fit.  We live just a few blocks from both the cool little downtown in one direction (which means it has a blues club, tiki bar, several coffee shops and good restaurants, and a gym), and the beach with its marina and fishing pier, in the other.

Our sunny garden apartment even has a peek-a-boo view of Puget Sound and the islands and mountains beyond.  About once an hour we hear the ferry blow its deep horn, or the Amtrak blast its warning as it rattles up and down the coastline.  This reminds us that while there may be only languid strollers up town, down by the water people are moving with purpose.

There's good variety in the dozen people living in these apartments, in two low wings facing each other with a lumpy patch of browning grass, and vain attempts at beautiful shrubbery, in between.  Adrienne--a nervous and friendly Chinese American lady--is the "manager," driving up from Seattle Saturday mornings to puzzle strenuously over the plantings, and pass along earnest messages about us all being a family.

This place not only had everything we were looking for, but it was also the first place we looked at.  And talk about the stars being aligned:  Minutes after we rented the apartment, a block away I noticed the rehearsal annex for the Driftwood Players.  My audition a week later was successful, and I landed a small part in a play we're doing in September.  I'd always had it in the back of my mind that when I retired to a place such as this, I'd become attached to its community theater, and here it was!

K will be volunteering at the senior center here; beginning next month she will also be feeding the poor and homeless, both in Edmonds and Seattle. For trips into the city, it's a quick, cheap ride on the commuter train that stops nearby.

I've become a walking-fiend, exploring the folded and platted landscape as if driven by some colonizing force, all the time mumbling or declaiming my lines in a Scottish accent.  And every day, late afternoon, K and I walk down to the beach, sit next to the pier and bask in an expanse of views over the water.

One joy of living here comes from the outstanding flower beds tucked around the street corners in our old town center.  Hanging pots overflowing with flowers are everywhere, as are comfortable iron benches, and views down to the water.  More than once, the past few weeks, words like "blessing," and "paradise" have passed between us.