Regarding a visit to Seattle and the blessingcurse of having the means to choose your own fate

Impressions of Seattle:

Lisa, my partner, guessed that I would move to Seattle next week if she agreed to it. And I’ve wondered about that all week. Would I?

I’ve got wanderlust bad. It’s true. I’ve wanted to go explore the globe for years. And now we’re debt-free, and we have the means to do so. But would I choose to uproot my life, just to go make this city mine for a while? If I could choose to make that decision right now?

Lately I’ve wondered what I want to get out of traveling around. I’ve wanted it for so long, but never really had an objective for it. To learn? Just to explore? To get inspired? – Inspired for writing stories? Inspired for writing songs?

Culture comes from people staying still. Nirvana and grunge music owe their origins to a bunch of kids, stuck in the Pacific Northwest, playing with punk music together. Ethnic foods come from people never leaving the place they grew up, for centuries.

I strive to live in a way that, if everyone chose to do so, the world would be better than it is now. We wouldn’t destroy our planet or each other.

A world made up entirely of travelers would be a bad world.

But extending my 20-something wanderlust to an entire world of wanderlusters seems sort of silly. I wouldn’t want to travel forever, and coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving, right?

But traveling for a long time seems bad for me, too.

Here’s the rest of the “coming back to where you started” quote, which is by Terry Pratchett:

Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra colors. And the people there see you differently, too. Coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving.

Which brings me to the root of my struggle, I suppose. I don’t feel like I have a place to come back to. Philly, yes, but Philly feels like a place I’m visiting. Not like home. The place I mostly grew up doesn’t quite feel like home, either, and I don’t really desire to settle there.

Would I move to Seattle? No, I don’t think so. Whatever I want out of living in new places, I think it has something to do with those places feeling novel. And Seattle doesn’t. It feels comfortable and normal. It would feel like I uprooted my nascent Philly communities for not much reason.

Would I move to Philly? Would I recommend doing so to other people? Would I settle there? I don’t know.

Where would you settle? Or where have you settled? Did you choose it? Why?


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