In 1986, fresh out of high school, a couple of my friends and I loaded up all we had and moved to the Seattle area to make it big as rock stars. We drove I-90 west to I-405, looped down and around the “S” curves and took the Renton Rainier Avenue exit. A right on Grady Way, then up the hill to the guitar player’s brother’s apartment, where we stayed a few weeks until we got jobs, got our own place, and got after pursuing our big dream.
Of course over the years life happened to all of us. We didn’t make it big. None of those guys who were so important to me then are any part of my life today, though they were some of the best friends I’ve ever had and if I don’t think of them every day, it comes pretty damn close.
A couple weeks ago my work took me to a customer site located in Renton. The address of the Holiday Inn where I registered to stay was familiar to me; we had driven right by it on that epic day 27 years ago. After checking in, from my room I could see into Renton, and could see the Kentucky Fried Chicken — brand new at the time — where we had taken jobs that led to our first apartment, and our first steps into manhood. It was kind of bizarre, really.
So the next morning I rose early and went exploring with my iPhone. I also drove up into the old neighborhood after work to see what was left up there. The following gallery is the result of those explorations. Probably not interesting to anyone but me, but that’s the nature of blogs, isn’t it?