Tag Archive | Ballard

Just us kids

When John’s friend Dave is in town (or we’re in Seattle), it’s like getting a glimpse of the past. They’ve been friends for so long that they almost revert to the kids they once were. Men will be boys, you know.

Though they met in first grade in tiny Selah, Washington, they didn’t become constant companions until sixth or seventh grade, and they further bonded in two years of wood shop under the tutelage of their beloved Andy Anderson.

I’ve heard stories.

After high school, John took off for the University of Washington in Seattle, never to return to the Yakima Valley except for visits.

Dave went to college closer to home, then ran his own business in Selah. A few years back, he retired, and he and Nora are living the cool life in the hip Ballard neighborhood of Seattle.

We’re all friends now and don’t get to hang out often enough.

But it’s getting more frequent. Dave and Nora have made a few trips here lately, and Dave has come for some long visits, during which the boys have the biggest time, especially when they’re tool-slinging.

Dave (at left) and John acting like boys as they hang Sheetrock in our stairwell upstairs.

Our restoration-project home is looking the better for it, too.

The boys and their toys.

And we love spending time with them in Ballard.

Dave was here last year for Jude’s 5th birthday – Jude calls him “Uncle Dave.” Uncle Dave just left yesterday after another visit, and John’s already feeling the loss.

Old friends mean a lot – they share your past, remember you “when” and comfort you by existing, even when they’re not by your side.

I’m lucky enough to have Anita right here in town and Pam a couple of hours away. Kelly, my friend from when we were 3, is in Springdale, but it’s shameful how infrequently we get together these days. We do always talk on birthdays and our moms keep us up on what the other is doing in between.

My own kiddos are lucky to still be besties with their best friends from junior high, Camille and Jessica for Liz, and Jack for Ben. They all live in Little Rock/North Little Rock and can see each other frequently, and them having each other makes me very happy as a mother.

John’s other best friend, Mike, moved to Antigua (tough job, but somebody’s got to do it), so we see him once in a blue moon, though we did have a fabulous trip to see Mike and Shonnie at the Blue Moon a few years back.

Mike, John, Laura and Shonnie in amazing Antigua.

So that makes the time with Dave all the more precious for John-boy. Grandkids and Nora were tugging on Dave’s heart, so it was definitely time to head to the great Northwest, but I know he left a bit of his heart here, too.

John will take good care of it for him. I’ll help.

Dave is secure enough to model my first dude's apron. He's been a huge cheerleader for my apron-making efforts.

As time goes by

In the morning, we’ll definitely be sleepless in Seattle, since we have to be at SeaTac by about 4:30 a.m. It’ll be back to the grind with me desperately working on my policy paper, but today was beautiful.

Yesterday our friends Dave and Nora generously drove over the mountains to Selah to fetch us. We said our goodbyes to Kitty and Norm, then stopped by John’s mom’s in Naches to hug Doris and Irene one more time, then drove back across the Cascades through Snoqualmie Pass, and on into Seattle.

We made a stop at a Columbia Winery in Woodinville (great Sangiovese), another at the home of their daughter, son-in-law and grandkids, also in Woodenville, then made our way back to Dave’s and Nora’s condo in Ballard.

Later we walked over to Jhan Jay Vegetarian Thai, a great newish restaurant, and ended up sitting a couple of tables over from Ron Reagan. Never was a fan of the old man, but Ron’s a cool dude, and it was fun to notice him there. The food was wonderful, too.

This morning Dave ran a race at the University of Washington while John, Nora and I met John’s cousin Joanne for coffee. Great to see her again.

John and his cousin Joanne

Steve Jobs tribute in a Ballard vintage shop

Mid-morning Nora and I hit the Ballard Market and artsy little shops (and may have had a close encounter with William H. Macy – if that friendly man wasn’t him, William H. has a near-twin) while the guys rested a bit, then we all piled into the car for some sight- and site-seeing.

One of our stops was Volunteer Park, where we climbed to the top of the ever-so-steep water tower.

Water Tower at Volunteer Park

Bruce and Brandon Lee

The first mayor of Seattle

Another was Lakeview Cemetery, specifically Bruce and Brandon Lee’s graves.  Sad, but lovely. We also stumbled across the first mayor of Seattle (not literally – no one stubbed a toe or anything).

More sight-seeing with tour guide Dave, then an early dinner/late-late lunch at historic Ray’s Cafe. Hummus and salad waterside. Can’t beat that.

Now we’re back in Ballard at the condo – I’ve done some homework and posted a video on Facebook of the guys dancing on a bench – and we’re just chilling.

And dreading the morning. Time goes by much too quickly in Seattle.