What's my Limit?
We lived in the Bellevue and Issaquah area east of Seattle for 15 years. Both of our children were born in Bellevue Hospital. We loved the area because of family and friends who lived there, because of its green nature, for nearby water sports in the summer and snow skiing in the winter and on a few optimal days, both water and snow skiing on the same day. With a wet suit of course!
The things that I didn't like about the area were the rain and the grey skies. They are not a myth, they are not a fable, but they are the things which cause people to have Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), depression caused by lack of sun. You would be hard pressed to find a more beautiful place in the world than the Emerald City in the summer. However, in the winter, if you are affected negatively by the rain, it is a less than perfect place to live. One year, it rained 95 days in a row, and then it stopped. For one day. One day! And then it rained again the next day! I mean, Noah only had to put up with 40 days! Granted he had a bit more quantity to deal with, and Seattle mostly gets drizzle, but still - sigh, 95 days.
We moved to Phoenix, AZ in August of 2002. I wouldn't recommend that month to anyone. No one should live there in August. The entire population should just evacuate in early May and not return until mid-October. When we first got settled in, we needed something from Lowe's Home Improvement store. It was a quick trip in - maybe ten minutes. One of the kids left a Crayon in the back seat. When we returned, it had LIQUIFIED in to the seat. All that was left was the wrapper. We ran back in to buy paper towels and we spent the next 10 agonizing minutes outside in 100,000° temperature, blotting Jazzberry Jam Crayon out of the upholstery while we felt like we would all just melt in to the pavement.
The skies were blue on average 299 days a year though, unless we were having a monsoon or haboob, but that's a different blog. In the winter it was paradise with clear bluebird sky days that were absolutely glorious. Every day when I went outside, I said a prayer of thanks for letting me live in a place with blue skies.
Neighbors in Phoenix told me that as time passed, I would be so happy when it rained. When we would very occasionally have rain, I half expected myself to begin to feel less unhappy about rain and grey skies, but I really doubted the predictions of being happy. The happy feeling that they said I would have never came. The thanksgiving for blue skies never stopped. I know that rain is a necessity, but my goal in life for the past three years has pretty much been to find continuous summer with good weather. And we have been pretty successful.
Here in Scotland we have been having terrific weather. However, today was a Seattle winter kind of day in Edinburgh. It was dark grey upon waking. Now I'm going to try not to complain here because I tend to be a Pollyanna kind of girl who is pretty happy by nature (thanks in large part to an amazingly sweet mom), but it basically rained all day. Ky went out in the morning for a few hours to do some sightseeing in the rain, and I went out when he got home at noon. We split up the day that way so that we wouldn't leave "our" dogs at home for too long and I was on a mission again which would require too much time for both of us to be gone.
If you read my earlier blogs you might guess what that mission was. Pickleball, yes, again. There is a second group here in Edinburgh that plays once a week and I was drawn like pigs to truffles, like a dog to a bone, like Popeye to spinach - you get the picture.
I tracked down a phone number and tried to reach the ringleader. No luck, I didn't hear back - I only texted and wrote the day of the match though, that might have had a bit to do with it. Spontaneity has it's drawbacks. Not knowing for sure that anyone would show up to play didn't stop me! I walked to the bus stop, in the rain (we didn't rent a car here), I got on one bus, rode for 45 minutes, had to walk about 5 minutes - in the rain, and wait for 5 for the connecting, bus which took me about 35 minutes to my next stop where I descended to yet another rain slick sidewalk for one more 5 minute walk. Altogether 1 hour 35 minutes after I left the house in the rain, I arrived at the Fairmilehead Church of Scotland where they play pickleball on one indoor court.
I was relieved to see a man standing just outside the door to the gym and he was fortunately there to play pickleball. The group is just starting their 8 month pickleball season. The gym is reserved in the summer for other programs. So I was in luck!
Altogether there were seven of us. One of the fellows goes regularly to The Villages in Florida. Several of the regulars were not there, but those of us who braved the rain played on their brand new net, and never even thought about what was going on outside. At least not until it was time to leave and reverse the trip, in the rain! So what's my limit for travel to pickleball. Don't really know yet, but 1:35 each way might be it ;-)
Ach bha e gu math spòrsail (But it was really fun - at least that's what Google translates says that means :-). It was worth it! Thanks to the Fairmilehead Picklers - they're getting it going in Edinburgh! We had some good play and some good laughs. What a welcoming group.
By the way, I should be back to my sunny disposition tomorrow - weather is supposed to be good again - hallelujah!
Tomorrow will be another quick move day. The doggies' mom is back home and this was only a short stay, but a sweet one. Stay tuned to find out "Where in the World are the Coffeys2Go"?
Hugs from Tranent, Scotland.