We’re off to see Seattle October 17 to 19 (Days 46 – 48)

Throwing Fish and Eating Chocolate in Seattle…

The first stop in Seattle is always the Public Market along Puget Sound…

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The market the bottom of Pike Street

specifically the Pike Place Fish Market. Whenever a customer orders a fish, workers shout to each other and fling the fish through the air. Actually the guy in front keeps a spare fish on the side specifically for this; it gets mangled quite quickly. It’s not just a fun thing to watch, but a management methodology. Read about it in When Fish Fly: Lessons for Creating a Vital and Energized Workplace from the World Famous Pike Place Fish Market.

Fish are grounded at the moment.

Fish are grounded at the moment, but the guy in orange pants is ready to fling on demand.

The public market is the spot to see the notorious multi-story gum wall (yes, people put their used gum on the wall), but that’s too disgusting for a photo. The original Starbucks (ca. 1971!) is here, with a line going around the block. We didn’t stop there, but did have scrumptious Piroshkys a few shops away. These are Russian filled pastries (not Russian-filled).

Piroshky!

Piroshky!

Pike’s offers a view of Mt. Rainier over the Seattle Seahawks stadium.

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Note the traffic too!

In the early ‘70s, two Seattle teenagers (Bill Gates and Paul Allen) became obsessed with computers, which led to the creation of Microsoft and ultimately billions in wealth for each of them. Today on opposite Seattle street corners the two boyhood friends provide unique visions of what can be done with great wealth.

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Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

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EMP Museum, designed by Frank Gehry to look like a melted guitar.

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The choice: Build a foundation to tackle large problems…

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or buy the local football team and win the Super Bowl.

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Develop ways to prevent and treat disease…

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or acquire Superman’s costume.

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Invest to shape the future…

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or have your guitar collection turned into a 30-foot sculpture, complete with computer-controlled, self-playing instruments.

Across the bridge to Seattle’s northern districts: The last time Nancy was in Seattle was with Liz in her Green America Fair Trade role for a Green Festival. We’re retracing the steps of that visit. That meant going to Theo’s Chocolate manufacturing facility…and sampling product, of course.

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Plain vanilla on the outside. Pure chocolate on the inside.

Theo is in Fremont, near the Fremont Troll, an art (?) project under the Aurora Avenue Overpass. Built in 1989 it’s the same age as our niece Meghan, but Meghan is holding up a lot better! (Happy Birthday, Meghan!)

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For size reference: That’s an actual Volkswagen in his hand.

Just north of Fremont is Ballard, a hipster kind of neighborhood. We went to our favorite little breakfast spot, Café Besalu.

Best

Cafe Besalu: best latte ever, and pastries to die for

Who would ever imagine a rusting gas works could become a major city park? But it has. Gas Works Park offers views of the city across Union Lake.

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Gas Works is a very popular park!

Grey’s Anatomy doesn’t give a clear picture of the city of Seattle. This place is hilly! Kerry Park, on a tall hill in the Queen Anne district, provides a view of the city. On a clear day, you can see to Mount Rainier. Our days were not quite clear enough. Look for Seattle Grace Mercy West Hospital to the right. (Just kidding. GA is a TV show!)

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Seattle and the Space Needle. It was built for the 1962 World’s Fair.

The Fremont Brewery in Fremont, Earth.

Because beer matters

Because beer matters

On our last night we walked to Chinatown, which happens to be next to the stadium for the Seattle Seahawks, who happen to be owned by Paul Allen. We had Peking Duck, almost as good as in Beijing.

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Feels like home.

A lovely couple days in Seattle. We do want to thank Shosh, Carrie, Liz, and especially Kathy for their advice and kindness. Mwah!

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