SEATTLE, Washington Impatient after two days of travel, I nearly run to the share-ride van. Winter still shrouded the city when I left; now sunlight angles across the spring evening.
"Eight o'clock and still light," I marvel.
"Duh!" replies the complete stranger beside me. "It's May."
Whoa there, lady! Why the hate?
First, I've been away for six weeks. Second, I've been loitering at a lower latitude. Third, you are an impolite and insular beast.
I seethe, but don't reply. Why mix it up with strangers in the shuttle?
Despite the snarky welcome, Seattle is a delight. I curl on the couch with Jake and Molly Cat. Relief drains all the tension from my limbs, the fight-or-flight alertness of a stranger in a strange land.
Inhale and exhale: that's travel and triumphant return, according to Edward. He revives on the road, then coasts on this momentum at his desk. Quite the opposite, I gather my reserves in Seattle, then burst into the world.
The important thing is to keep on breathing, we agree.