I'm not sure how it happened, but I found myself today with not one obligation on my schedule and Jess at work. It felt like a miracle.
I slept in till 9:30 but woke to a cat fight and had to get up and put a stop to it by locking up my bad kitty. I was annoyed but I didn't really want to sleep the day away so I tried not to be too grumpy about it.
My back has been very sore lately so I decided to see if I could use the gift certificate that Lisa got me for a half hour massage and sauna at a place called Loyly over in southeast. They had an opening in the afternoon so I scheduled for 2:30, intending to get there early to get into the sauna first.
I forced myself to eat—when I have no structure to my day it's very easy to get caught up doing other things and forget—and then spent most of the morning and early afternoon making arrangements for our Seattle to Portland ride. Jess had only just confirmed that she could get the weekend off and I knew it was late to be trying to find housing for the midpoint of the ride.
Unfortunately the woman I stayed with at the midpoint the last two times isn't hosting anymore. I knew I definitely didn't want to camp though so I emailed all the other options for private housing and got a hit with Centralia College. I sent off reservations for the bus to Seattle, midpoint housing and officially registered us both for the ride. We'll stay with mom's best friend Liz when we go up on Friday night. She's an early morning person and won't mind too much getting up at the butt crack of dawn to take us to the start line.
I was feeling very pleased with myself but also running late by the time I left. I had at first thought to drive since it was about 10 miles across town, but then realized that I'd be terribly cranky driving around on a gorgeous day like today. Plus I needed to go to the Lloyd district at 5:30 and there's no way I wanted to be driving the car at that hour.
So instead of putting the pedal to the metal, I put a little extra foot to the pedal and arrived at Loyly about 10 minutes before my massage was scheduled. That gave me just enough time to get the lay of the land, put all my things in a locker, take a shower and appear in the common room in my fluffy white robe and slippers.
Since the massage was only 30 minutes, I had Kim, my therapist, focus on my feet and back only which was a good choice. Afterwards I hung out for about 45 minutes. I didn't even last a minute in the steam room. It feels too much like I'm about to drown in a hot tub. The sauna suited me much better and though it was still uncomfortable at first, I was able to relax into the wall of heat and sweat out my troubles. I went in twice and each time came out feeling pleasantly light headed and woosy. There was an open garage door and outside of it was only a bench that caught the sunlight and a wall—so you could sit 'outside' if you wanted and relax after the sauna. I got my book out of my locker and spent a few minutes reading.
It was starting to get late, so eventually I made myself get dressed and headed out. I stopped at People's Food coop as I realized that it's snap pea season again and last year they had some of the best. They did not disappoint this time either.
Then I went over to Seven Corners Cycles to say hi to Cory. He too, laughed about my touring vs cargo bike dilemma. But in the meantime I told him that I wanted to bring my road bike in for some love while I was out of town and he said no problem and he'd get her all fixed up for me. I love that guy.
In my head, I had this grand plan that involved massage, sauna and several hours of sitting around a nearby coffee shop but when I left Cory's I barely had time to grab a bite to eat at the Clinton Corner Cafe. I used to go there all the time when I worked around the corner and the woman who runs the place was very friendly.
“You never come around anymore!” she said, glad to see me and disappointed with my infrequent appearances at the same time. I explained that I lived 10 miles away and didn't work over here anymore. I certainly don't miss the certifiably insane people I worked for, but I do really like that neighborhood, especially riding through Ladd's Edition.
I ordered a Reuben sandwich and sat at an outside table. When my food came, the owner's dog Rufus left the guys he was staring at to come and stare at me instead. Me being a sucker an' all, I gave him a couple of chips and a bit of pastrami. Rufus was singular in his focus on food and made it clear that he was simply using me for grub and not interested in affection of any kind. I could live with that kind of clear boundary setting.
I scarfed my sandwich (Rufus left me as soon as it was clear I wasn't giving up any more goods and someone else got served) and then headed north back to the Waddell & Reed building. Anne was hosting a wine and cheese networking party and she and another woman who is a personal coach and deals with money issues a lot, both gave short talks that were interesting and informative. I invited Eris, who enjoyed it as well. I ran into one person I knew (but couldn't remember where from of course) and one woman handed me her card and turned out to run a publishing company called Spirit Press. I have the card in my wallet for when I'm ready to get my Chickbeat book done for real.
I got home just in time for a quick shower and watching the Grey's Anatomy finale with Jess.