13 November 2006

the day I realised I like California ... or Dan visits Seattle for the weekend

Oh Seattle. It wasn’t that I didn’t like you it was just that you were too cold and rainy for my taste. At some point during the trip I started to refer to San Diego as home, perish the thought. Although I don’t know it may be fast becoming that. After speaking with mother the other night and complaining about the cold and rain she flatly said ‘you’re not coming back are you?’ My dear mother is a terribly perceptive woman.

It was good to see the boys even if I am seeing them again in two weeks, and it did remind me a lot of home. It was cold, raining, the trees were dropping their leaves etc etc. It also felt like Waterloo had somehow made its’ way to Redmond. It was like nothing had changed but we were all making a lot more money.

Friday was a quiet night in and some nerd games with Steve, Chris and Ian. I also introduced them to the wonderful world of ‘How I Met Your Mother’ and all parties involved are now hooked. This is also how Chris got the nickname of Swarly.

Saturday was IHOP followed by two games of poker with the boys and two of their friends. I won both games and pretty easily at that. Turns out not playing for a few months is good for me. This all occurred to a steady backdrop of me leaving sales pitches to get Steve to move to San Diego. The logic is if we can get Steve, Ian and Chris won’t be far behind. Its funny how much more tolerable the world is when you have your friends around you. That night we went to Salty’s for dinner, and while I am not a big fan of shellfish the crab was amazing. We walked around the park a bit and had a cigar while just talking in general. The intention was to go to the Crocodile Café but by the time we would have got there it would have been packed.

I crashed at Chris’ place all weekend. The place itself is very nice and Chris has added his own touch to the place. However, the terms hotel and Spartan have both been used to describe his decorating style. Sorry Swarly I had to give you a hard time. As one would expect though old Swarls’ was a great host and his place was immaculate.

Sunday we played a little nerd games, Swarls and Ian went back to work and Steve and I headed downtown. It was too dark and rainy to do the Space Needle so we tried out the Experience Music Project\Sci-Fi Museum. Now let’s begin with the building itself. This was another Frank Gehry eyesore; it looks like a mess of melted crayons. It’s the sort of thing you know will look moronic in 10 years. The museum itself was an even great disappointment. There were a few neat exhibits like the evolution of the guitar and token showing on the birth of mcing and later hip hop. Otherwise it was attempts to make Seattle’s contribution to music seem more important than it was. To borrow and expropriate a phrase ‘Hendrix never meant shit to me.’ I personally never fell into that cult of his guitar genius, it’s not that I dislike him it’s just that I’m indifferent. This is mostly the same way I feel about grunge which was also well represented.

The Sci-Fi museum was a bit better but not much. I am not really a Sci-Fi fan and while I do enjoy say Red Dwarf and Dr. Who that is pretty much the sum total of my interest in the genre. There were some neat displays there as well, the best being on the comparative size of all the star ships from George Jetsons car to Star Trek and Star Wars and they even included the Red Dwarf and Starbug. They also had one of the cat’s costumes as well as the device that opened the parallel universe in series 8(wow that really sounds nerdy but Red Dwarf is a comedy). I was amazed at how much of it came from Paul Allen’s personal collection. I suppose that means he really is a geek at heart. I was a bit disappointed that there wasn’t anything on Dr. Who at all. I mean come on just one scarf or one Dalek, cut me some slack here.

We tried to get a late lunch/early supper at the Crocodile but no dice, it only opens for lunch. So I took a picture for Carly and left. The reason I wanted to go to the Croc was because it’s owned by Peter Bucks wife. Yep I’m that lame, I didn’t care that Nirvana played some uber secret gig there, that didn’t matter.

Decided in stead to do some very touristy things like Pikes Place Market, which was, well it’s a market not a lot should be expected by this. I also tried out the original Starbucks, which as far as tourist locations go was probably the most packed one I saw with in Seattle. It was pretty amazing to see and wonder how it ever became the power it is now.

On the whole Seattle is a fun town and I liked feeling like I was in a proper city again with a proper skyline and downtown core. I did really enjoy the sort of melancholy grays and rain that came along with Seattle as it is something I don’t get often around here.

The weather did leave something to be desired but what can you do. The only real snag was the 2 hour delay of my flight back to San Diego. I sat talking to a couple of girls who went to UCSD and managed to get a phone number out of the cute redheaded one amongst them. Granted getting in at 1:30 AM is no joy but I’ll live. Now to prepare for Mark’s visit on Saturday.

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