Laura Lavigne is one of my amazing teammates from The Pollination Project’s Global Kindness Program. She lives about 90 minutes north of Seattle – where we would be spending a weekend with Zack’s brother. When Laura told me that they were having their annual Gratitude Party Picnic the day I was to arrive in Seattle, I knew I had to make the trek.
Nearly four hours later (Seattle traffic on a Friday doesn’t mess around), I pulled into a driveway on the beautiful island of Anacortes, Washington. There have been many places that have stolen my heart of the course of this trip, but Anacortes took the whole of me. It was a beautiful night and the picnic was amazing. I was able to talk a little bit about the road trip and meet so many wonderful people. Back at Laura’s later that night, we drank tea and stayed up joined in fellowship and community.
When Saturday morning rolled around and I had to mad dash back to Seattle for our service project with the Post-Prison Education Program, I – for the first time on the trip – wasn’t sure. I knew I had plans and projects and a schedule. But there was something about Anacortes.
Later Saturday night, after Zack and I had our event with the nonprofit and done our own Seattle sightseeing, I went back to the thought of Washington. Was I really about to break our schedule?
On Sunday, July 29th – we went off script. Zack stayed in Seattle with his brother and nieces and nephews and I returned to Anacortes (with much less traffic this time). For maybe the first time on the trip – I didn’t worry about unread emails or miles to drive. I didn’t think about the outstanding to do list or what might happen when the trip ended. I explored a scenic overlook. I hiked to the water, picking huckleberries and thimbleberry and climbing rocks. I rode a ferry and ate marion berry pie in the grass on the tiny island of Guemes.
That night, I drove back to Seattle, nodding at the dazzling Space Needle and feeling confident in the slight itinerary shift. So much of this road trip worked because of planning and organization. We kept to the schedule and were on top of when we had to be where. But for this one day, it was nothing short of amazing to be truly in the moment in an island in the Pacific Northwest.