To me, there is something a little wild about Seattle. I think it might be the green, the smell of growing things in every breeze and, just under that, the damp-soil scent of where they grow. I often walk under hanging branches whose leaves, usually on the dripping side of wet, plaster themselves against my head, caressing me in a manner that is far from tender but still surprising and enjoyable. Even in January, plants grew. Ugly or pretty, welcome or a nuisance, they kept growing. They reached out to snag me on every sidewalk. They flourished in the full, heavy pots outside of every coffee shop. Bees buzzed past my ears in March, looking for flowers. Finding them. So strange when before, my Marches were all snow and brown grass.
Now it is May, and every time I walk outside into cut-glass sunlight or a Lord of the Rings mist, I think of the plants and people all around me, putting down roots, poking tentative heads out of yielding ground, bolting, running, scattering seeds. Restful and restless, the way I’ve always been and will likely always be.
I am a city dweller at my core. I spend a second daydreaming about hiking through woods completely alien to me, and then I go hang out at Cafe Vita for 5 hours instead, chasing my dreams with espresso. Last Saturday, a seagull pooped on my shoulder on 15th Avenue. That’s the closest to wildlife I’ve come in quite a while.
Still, I plant herbs and green things near the tall, ridiculously sunlit-for-Seattle windows of my apartment. I think about the seeds burrowing and getting ready, adjusting and preparing, drinking, absorbing. Stretching. When they emerge, bushy and bitter, shy and sweet, I feel like we both accomplished something. Tiny, but triumphant.