If you’d like to catch up, please go to; Before I Tripped #20
Amy and I had everything packed. Two cars completely full, Amy’s 2 cats, and we each had a walkie-talkie; purple with yellow buttons. We would drive from Minneapolis to Seattle over a span of 3 days. Amy had gone to Triple AAA, and they had mapped out our route for us. Oh, the things we did in 1996 before home computers and cell phones!
Amy would be the pace car if she tapped her brakes twice, that meant to turn on the walkie-talkie she wanted to tell me something. As the car following, if I flipped my brights at her twice, that was my signal, turn on the walkie-talkie, I wanted to talk. We didn’t want to wear out the batteries, and we agreed to say “over” as we finished speaking to the other. And off we went!
(Somewhere in Montana… Amy again taping brakes, Kim again turning on the walkie-talkie.)
“Did you see that trucker cut me off! Over.”
“I almost died! …Over!” (and so it went…)
We drove with only minor mishaps! Minnesota, North Dakota, Montana, Idaho, Western Washington, the Cascades, and then, finally… Seattle! (West Seattle to be specific!)
Our first week in our new apartment which we would learn later was on bullet alley across from crack row… (how do we end up in these areas?!?!) We had no furniture, so we purchased air mattresses, a futon and a bean bag chair with matching ottoman. We also bought two director chairs for the patio and a little matching table. We both got our driver’s licenses and set up bank accounts. My best friend Holly lived about an hour away and came for a visit! Our first visitor! Two weeks later we would both attend her wedding!
I loved this little complex, there was a pool, a weight room, a party room. The apartment itself was laid out quite nicely. If this was their idea of ‘a bad neighborhood,’ I was impressed. When we left Minneapolis, it had just been coined, ‘Murder-apolis.’ We only heard gunshots once while we lived in that apartment, and we were there for a little over a year.
We discovered micro-brews, fresh seafood, the Ballard Locks, Pikes Place Market, The Fishermans Warf, Post Alley, The Underground Seattle, the Space Needle and Mt Rainier. Amy landed a job with a temp. agency as a paralegal and I would start as an assistant director for a state-run work release after we attended my best friends wedding.
The Bishop Lewis House, State Work Release, downtown Seattle. I would work each shift to get to know the employees, then move to a permanent 2-10 swing shift. I was told after I reported for my first shift, my first priority was to shadow two problem employees. I was thinking I have 70 convicts and 12 staff to oversee and you are worried about 2 employees? My boss wanted them both gone, but I had other ideas…