Seattle with a side of Vancouver

I’ve been to Seattle about four or five times over the past two years, primarily to visit a few of my best girlfriends who live out there.

I *think* I love Seattle but I have yet to distinguish- do I actually love Seattle or do I just love the time spent there with my girlfriends?

We spent our Saturday day drinking at wineries, and dancing in bikinis on Diana’s balcony (I blame the wine) with a view of the Space Needle.

This counts as sightseeing, right?

At this point I’ve seen a good chunk of Seattle already, so my girlfriends and I were relaxing in her hot tub, when one of them said, “So, should we drive up to Vancouver tomorrow?”

A spontaneous road trip!? A PaulineFlewAway dream come true!

I was so genuinely excited to go and giddy at the thought of such spontaneous plans.

Naturally, I began bombarding my friends with questions.

“What time are we leaving” and “where will we stay,” and “how long is the drive” and “can we stop by Whole Foods to get healthy snacks before we leave?”

My friends looked at one another, unfazed, having known me for years.

“We’ll play it by ear, Paulina.”

I silenced myself for a good minute, and continued, “we should figure out the best route there,” and “should we make dinner reservations? We should, yeah. Okay, I’ll look up the best restaurants.” and “we should start packing!”

One girlfriend looked at the other and laughed, “Can we give you a Benadryl? Chill.”

I realized I could really take a hint from my friends. Their plan genuinely was to just wake up the next day, start driving and figure it out when we get to Vancouver. I was in absolute awe of their ability to just go with the flow. They’re so…chill.

I am anything but chill. In fact, I am the opposite of chill.

I run my life with the rigor of a drill sergeant.

I wake up at 5:30am during the week, and sleep in until 7 or 8 on weekends. I have plans for each and every day scheduled at least four weeks in advance. It’s all in my calendar(s). You may have even seen an invite come through if the plans involved you.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I don’t like spontaneity – I have a few nights here and there blocked off for shenanigans, and a few morning hours baked in for recovery.

I call it, “scheduled fun.”

Sounds fun, right? Okay, okay.

So in Seattle, under the influence (of my girlfriends), I did something wild and gave my Type A side a weekend off.

The next afternoon, the gals and I hopped into the car and began driving to Vancouver. Normally, I would have had an aneurysm about not leaving early morning to make the most of the day (Carpe that Diem!), but today I was being chill.

My girlfriend directed us the wrong way and we proceeded to drive an hour in the opposite direction which would have lead to aneurysm #2, but… not today Anxious Satan!

And just like that…the rest of the weekend really fell into place. We stopped in Chilliwack at a Sunflower festival and had a photoshoot. We had a fabulous Italian dinner in Vancouver, went out in Granville, and stayed in a cute boutique hotel we found last minute by the waterfront. The next morning I jogged through Stanley Park, we had excellent pastries at Purebread, and we got dizzy on the Capilano Suspension Bridge.

It was everything that a Vancouver trip should have been, and it wouldn’t have really made a difference if we had planned it a month ago or day of.

It’s healthy to look at life from someone else’s perspective and try on their approach for size, if only for a weekend. I spent the rest of my time in Seattle catching up with additional friends and overall feeling a lot more relaxed.

I’m looking forward to more spontaneous mini trips in the future, but for right now…my plans this evening include making reservations for every meal I will have in Vegas next weekend.

Old habits die hard.