Saturday, November 26, 2011

Seattle Rhythms - Occupy Black Friday [Seattle]+ Seattle Subversive Square Dance + Phở

Today was my ever-so-very first actually-free day I've had in Seattle in the past 77 days

77 days without any Seattle-freedom? How did I survive?

I survived beautifully, actually. L'Abri life was beautiful life. I loved learning to live without doing-doing-doing and I told myself, I told myself that when I got back I would try not to slip back into that do-everything-there-is-to-do-in-the-world mode.

Like that was going to happen.

My Friday was an empty slate until, Thursday afternoon, I got an email that the Seattle Subversive Square Dance Society was going to be making an appearance at Occupy Black Friday at Westlake Center. What? Dancing at Westlake? That's a boat I definitely want to get in.

The basic gist of the event (called a "protest" - but if it was a protest, it was the loveliest protest I have ever accidentally taken part of - I wasn't up for protesting without fully understanding the cause but I did want to dance) was: to forgo the shopping frenzy and come to Westlake Park to participate instead in a day of protest, community, education, creativity and caring. We think this is more valuable than any holiday gift bought at the big box stores. So come out and meet people, make music, dance, make your own crafty holiday gifts, share a potluck, learn about how to shift your shopping to our local economy, bring something to trade at the barter fair and more!

If you check out any news coverage of the event, you can tell they were waiting for conflict. They were quite weary that Occupy Seattle would make a scene.

There was no scene.

We came and danced - a lovely square dance! Everyone passing by could join in and many did. We laughed and twirled around to the live music of fiddlin', banjo, the works. From the faces of everyone, the bystanders and participants, no one was felt negatively towards it.

So much freedom was felt dancing with the community out in the open.

The Really Really Free Market was also worth note. They had set up a booth where there were all sorts of items for the taking. Boxes of apples were also available beneath the glittery craft tables.

After the dance, we made a giant spiral and meditated for 10 minutes followed by the singing of a simple song being backed up by ukulele as we walked around, hand in hand. Silence amidst the crowds of downtown Seattle on the busiest day of the year was a fresh experience.

A bathroom break at Westlake led me to run into Peter and Kirsten, friends that are more so actual friends of Tucker's.

Post-spiral, I connected with a few from Occupy (including Ginger!) and we wandered up to Capital Hill to fill up on phở. This was a lot I was beautifully unfamiliar with - but getting to know them was a pleasure. Robert offered to teach me how to fight on Sunday or Tuesday after seeing my reflexes and repeatedly testing them.

Most of the crew was headed to "the Seattle to Cairo Solidarity March." Not clued in as to what's going on in Cairo? The BBC tells all. Read it. Ginger, Riley (who just got to Seattle from Montana and is on his way to Oregn), and I skittered back down to Pine & 3rd to catch the 5 to the Phinney Neighborhood Center for one of my favourite things to do - contra dancing!

It felt soo good to be back on the dance floor. No longer was I spinning alone in a kitchen. I had others helping me spin and spinning in unison with me. "Maggie, where have you been?" "MAGGIE'S BACK!" "We've all missed you." Goodness, I felt the love. Felt it! And, score!, Eric was there! First off, it's great to see Eric. Second off, Eric's presence means I get a 20 minute ride home instead of the 1 hour and 40 minute bus ride that goes until midnight.

Yes. I'm back in Seattle. Only for a wee bit, but I'm here. And life already feels a bit back to normal. Life is already going going going. I love my city. I am grateful to call Seattle home.

I think I see myself at :47. Then you can definitely see Robert enter from the left at 2:13 in his hat.


  1. Hi, thought I'd stop by and say thanks for visiting mine! You have one lovely blog. :)

    -Victoria @

  2. Good to see you bumbled into Peter and Kiersten...hope you gave them a squeeze for me :)


Your words make me grin.

Related Posts with Thumbnails