Welcome to APUG.

One caution though - APUG may not be the best place to come if you feel overwhelmed by choice.

The battery issue is actually not as important as you might assume.

In most cases, due to the availability of batteries through the internet, it is usually very easy and inexpensive to always have backup batteries in hand.

My recommendation would be one of the cameras I use - a Mamiya 645 Pro for 35mm like handling (with a grip), a Mamiya C330 (with both prism and waist level finders and a selection of lenses) for battery independent use and overall a smaller kit or a Mamiya RB67/RZ67 kit (with grip) for gorgeous large negatives and a rotating back.

Of course, everyone else will recommend what they use too.

At least in Seattle you have a couple of resources (Glazer's and Kenmore Cameras) where you can actually see some of the choices ahead of time.