Greenlake at dusk. Photo by the brilliant Matthew Sewell
It kicked off last Saturday night, when I was slithering through the medicinal herb garden at UW. Following that, I spent 15 minutes stealthily stalking the enemy who had infiltrated our side of campus and was now lurking in the bushes. It turned out to be a fire hydrant; minutes later the other team found the flag and the game was over.
The night carried on the Knarr Tavern, which used to be our local watering hole when 80% of the Seattle Ultimate crowd lived side by side in Ravenna. In fact, I used to be on a dodgeball team with bartender, Brad. Our team name was the Knarr Shipwrecked Social Club. Time had dulled my memory however, and I did not remember that the drinks were prepared dynamite-strong.
Three hours later and I was lying in my bed, bouncing off the mattress with each tremendous hiccup. Before I knew it it was morning and I was splayed in the back of Kyle's minivan wearing oversized sunglasses and a large Appalachian State Geology sweatshirt. We were heading towards the Skykomish, my favorite river. My favorite river with some of my favorite people in my favorite season blah blah blah.....I was dying. Surely I was dying. "Plenty of my friends are out partying all night and then wake up hella early to go paddling." I had exuberantly informed my fellow Knarr-goers. "There's no reason I can't do it!" Now I wasn't too sure. I couldn't even lifting my head, much less squeezing into a dry top, much MUCH less navigating Boulder Drop for the first time as had been the plan.
Things intensified when we pulled into a coffee shop in Redmond and suddenly everyone around me in the van was eating muffins. I couldn't handle it. I turned to the side of the car and threw up a gallon of the Knarr's worst all over the door. Unfortunate for everybody, admittedly, but I felt a touch better afterwords. I did a run of the sky paddling weekly but benefiting from rolling in the cold water. Of course, I walked boulder drop without a second thought.
The week progressed with record-breaking high temperatures. We made national news for enduring the hottest day ever, EVER in Seattle's recorded history. It was 104. Unaccustomed to the unpleasant burning sensation, the uptight Seattlites curdled. I had a nasty run in with one particularly tight one who ran across the street to me and yelled at me for taking my dog out in the morning. A native East Coaster where people generally get shot for not minding their own business, I unleashed a diatribe on her unfit to publish.
As the mercury climbed in a house with no fan and no air conditioning (both were completely sold out in the State of Washington) the dog and I melted into a puddle on the floor and remained there the majority of the day.
Thank goodness Ammen and Steph called when they did to announce an impromptu Hottest Day of the Week party on their or houseboat. We grilled and swam off their porch and, as if the day needed more festivities, we celebrated the inaugural Big Naked Wednesday by shedding the bathing suits like a group of overheated snakes and paddling around Lake Union. There was a half moon out and the skyline of Seattle glowed like the promise land.
In the late afternoons I go to Hot Yoga in Greenlake, although the temperature inside the studio is about equivalent to the temperature outside. I meet Lisa on the lake afterward to swim and dive at Greenlake. At night I drink marshmallow powder, aloe vera gel, flax seed oil, and half a dozen other medicinal potions to try and rid myself of the maybe-parasites that are haunting me. I read a book until 2 in the morning, when the upstairs neighbors graciously turn off their TV and the first cool flutterings of night begin to creep through the screen-door.
That about wraps it up. Tomorrow is the Skykomish downriver race and the beginning of another typical week in a Seattle Summer for the girl who has run away from reality, if only for the time being.