Thanks for dressing up to meet me, Elliott Bay.
Thanks for dressing up to meet me, Elliott Bay. It's so nice to be back. Rich Smith

Dear Seattle,

Hiiiiii. I'm Rich Smith. Two weeks ago, I found out that I got a job here at The Stranger. The next day I found someone to rent out my apartment in Missouri. Saturday I cleaned and packed. Saturday night I went to the symphony with Dad as a sort of good-bye. Sunday morning I started driving across the country, my only companion a bag of granola. (Yes, I did receive some sexts. No, I did not respond while driving.)

I drove into Seattle Thursday afternoon and headed straight for the lake and jumped in. Then I bused down to the market to take in one of my favorite views: Elliott Bay from that place where you wait for the elevator at Pike Place Market. I like to watch the magical ferries leaving their slug trails all over the place en route to the islands. (Tangent: But what good is a vista, really? I never have any thoughts while looking at a vista, except for the thought that I'm supposed to have Big Thoughts while looking at vistas. Can we all just agree, as a people, that the only purpose of a vista is to provide a backdrop for hot kissing?)

I lived here for three years while completing an MFA at the University of Washington, and leaving this habitable sapphire was one of the saddest things that I've ever done. I even missed the monocloud that usually happens between November and May. (I've heard you didn't have a monocloud this year?) When the monocloud returns, I will make a bed of moss and praise it.

I'll be changing my pants in my car until I find a place to live, but this will not stop me from writing to you about books and national politics and tragic mass death and probably a little bit my sex life.

Be seein' ya at the t-docks,