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Kaleidoscope Tekulo posted a blog entry in This is my lawnSo this past weekend I decided to spend a night in Seattle. I got some bonus cash over the holidays so I decided to give it a go. Now, this was my first trip that I've fully planned by myself. Booking the hotel, making travel arrangements, etc. It was a bit stressful as things didn't go totally as planned. XD Luckily for me, I have a friend who lives in the area who was able to show me around. And, well, I honestly loved it. I don't know why, but I've always sort of loved cities. The people, the culture, being able to actually walk places... it's great imo. I haven't been to a large downtown area since my trip to New York City a couple years ago. I ended up exploring a part of Seattle where there was an LGBT community. Rainbow flags were on display in a lot of the shops and there was advertising showing gay couples. I even decided to check out a thrift store because it had a sign that said it welcomed people regardless of race, sexual orientation, religion, etc. The sign said "You are SAFE here." This trip was the second time ever I felt at ease in public in a long time. The first time was this past summer at Seattle Pride in June. At one point I walked around the city looking for a park to kill some time, and I came across this cat themed book store. They had cats inside and they were very friendly. I was immediately drawn to the Queer Studies section. LGBT literature is something I have always been severely starved for. In my hometown in Ohio I looked for LGBT literature in my local library and only found one single book on the subject. So, for me, to have access to a collection of books about Queer Studies was kind of huge for me. Granted, I do have a kindle and if I knew what books to look for I could probably build up a stronger collection of LGBT literature, but as someone who grew up in a community where talking about homosexuality is somehow "bad" I honestly don't even know what to look for. This was honestly a first for me, to have that kind of resource where I could just browse LGBT books. And mind you, I have been to libraries and bookstores before, but I never found an entire section dedicated to Queer Studies. I walked out of there with five books which I am pretty stoked about. So that was my first day. I did a little shopping and just felt at ease in the city. For me that was an amazingly nice change of pace. My second day in Seattle I spent it with my friend. I met her when I worked at my previous summer job in Washington. She's one of the coolest people I've met. XD We went to an asian market in the International District. I picked up some baked goods (I love desserts and baked goods from other cultures because in America we kind of tend to have way too much sugar in our foods. I got a really nice green tea roll with red bean paste, an assortment of buns, and a cream horn. They were just factory made bakery items, but I was still happy with them. After that, we went to a ramen restaurant. We got vegetarian ramen and I ordered Octopus dumplings to share (as we are both pescaterian). It was a really good meal in my opinion. For the rest of my trip I had just packed my own homemade pizza and ate that the rest of the trip. We also went to some thrift stores. I managed to find three pairs of shoes (which is amazing because finding shoes in my size is rare for me), a very comfortable sweater and a suit jacket (I have a wedding to go to later this year hahaha). We were both in food comas from the sweets and ramen at the end of our adventures. XD So after that we just went back to my friend's place and relaxed watching dumb internet videos until I had to catch my ride back home. It was a nice full day. One of my favorite things, though, is after it got dark and I got to see the lights on the Seattle skyline. No matter where I am, I love seeing city lights. There's just something enchanting about it. But anyway, now I feel refreshed and ready to get back to work tomorrow. After a very stressful holiday season in foodservice at a new job, I really needed to take some time to relax. Edit: tl;dr - I spent time looking at gay books while I had a cat purring up a storm in my lap. Needless to say I had a successful vacation.