Saturday, April 17, 2010


Day 26

Miles today: 0 Total miles: 5,202

We slept in until 10 or 11 today - that was a pretty taxing day
yesterday. I think we spend about 11 hours travelling door to door. We
went out to brunch this morning with Sam and Sean and two other
friends who had flown in fir the weekend, Mik and Kyle, and had some
delicious trendy sausage and french toast. I started to notice last
night that thus city is very similar to San Francisco. Pretty hilly
streets, a lot of . . . um, different people. The difference is that
in San Francisco, there are some areas of town that tend to attract
these people of alternative lifestyles, while in Seattle, they're just
everywhere. There's the guy wearing a kilt at the yuppie bar, the guy
with the tie-dye overalls at the trendy brunch place, and the couple
dressed in all leather and trench coats at the Indian restaurant. I
can tell that I'm from the east coast because this all strikes me as
strange, while it's just business as usual for the people who live here.

We really lucked out with the weather this weekend. It's usually
pretty wet and cold in April, but it's sunny and in the mid 60's
today, so Sam, Sharon and I decided to go on a little hike. Climbing
1,500 feet in 2 miles up switchbacks is a little hike in the west. The
drive out was really nice, with cool views of Mt. Ranier in the
distance and other smaller peaks closer in. I did the hike in my
motorcycle boots because the second package I sent here from SF hasn't
arrived yet. I knew it was going to be a little painful in my $25
boots, but man did I have some huge blisters when we got back. The
hike was great, though, and we had a really cool view of the
surrounding peaks.

We sprinted down the mountain to see if we could make it to the Red
Hook Brewery by 5 for the tour. Missed it by about 10 minutes, but it
was sold out earlier that day anyway. But no worries! They also have a
bar for those of you who missed the tour! I've never really tried Red
Hook's beer, but their ESB was great.

Everyone was dragging at that point so we headed for the espresso.
Seattle is the only place I've been where coffee is significantly
different than the rest of the country. Most people drink espresso and
it is some of the strongest I've ever had. It tastes like they use
half as much water as a normal shot. It's probably an acquired taste,
because I like most espressos and didn't like this style.

Also, a note about Starbucks, according to Sam: it's really not
popular in the city of Seattle. There's only one location, but there
are others like 15th street coffee that are actually Starbucks, but
have been disguised to appear independent.

We went out to dinner to a great Indian place, and then went out to a
Belgian beer place to meet Walter, Sam's boyfriend. It's been really
fun meeting people in big cities and swing how they live, and it was
really cool to meet Walter and see the life Sam and he had carved out
for themselves. Sam lives in downtown Seattle, but reverse commutes to
Microsoft's campus. I'd never heard of this type of arrangement
before, but it makes perfect sense. The company doesn't need to locate
downtown to attract talent or be closer to any companies that it works
closely with, and the young people who work for the company want to
live in the city where it's more exciting.

After some stout at the first bar, we went out to Purr, where I got to
have my first experience with a gay bar. It was pretty interesting,
and no, I didn't get any digits.

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