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Archive for July, 2014

Weird Trek

July 31, 2014 Leave a comment

Last weekend I had time and weather on my side.
Well weather was a bit deceiving being slightly hotter than I would have liked but still it was bright, warm, little wind, and I had few reasons to head home after going Downtown for a meeting.
An odd idea struck my mind while I began my eventual ride home and it was to see if I could make it Magnuson Park. Now that had often been a wondering of mine. Could I make it the nearly 10 miles from my house to Magnuson. I knew the Burke was mostly flat getting there and back but that sort of distance wasn’t something I am used to going.
So I tried.

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In the shade staring at Lake Washington.

It wasn’t nearly the trek I thought it would.
Sure it was tough but as I rode so did many other. Some in spandex and racing bikes, others dressed for a sumer out, many with a kid on the back. Calm ride most of the way as I followed a group on a ride, probably to Kenmore, and while I could have overtaken them I didn’t see the need. Their pace allowed me to enjoy the tree lines shade of that park of the Burke Gilman trail.
Then I got to Magnuson Park where I drank water, looked at dogs, wandered around, and tried to find ripe black berries to eat.
Having not ridden my bike for almost two weeks I thought I’d be a lot more exhausted by this trip but as I sat in the shadow of that sub fin I decided I’d really like to go to chucks.
After all that was my first achievement so why not head there it?

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As I rode toward Green Lake I became aware that I was hungry.
And a bit hot.
Hungry Hot
As I tried to find the right trail to cross through Ravenna into Green Lake, which I ended up going the wrong way and ended up on a hill and I was a bit tired so I had to break for a bit but then I found another nice tree lined trail and my way toward Green Lake. A bit to eat seemed perfect as I planned at least one beer and with the sweating and exertion it seemed the best idea to have a break, eat some fish and chips, and drink powerade.
Which I did.
Also forgot that going to the Spud on a Sunday when it’s warm is a terrible idea as they were quite packed. Still those guys kept on top of the orders and the fish was excellent and then I continued on to chucks.

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No pictures of chucks this time.
I’ve done that but I passed this temple and have been meaning to take a picture of the prayer wheels.
I like it and am glad 83rd goes by it.
Except the hill up from Green Lake that route wasn’t too bad and I made it.
So I can make it again.
Another success and I am ready to do it again.

Comments on my appearance

July 23, 2014 Leave a comment

For the past two days I have been in scenic Wenatchee Washington to attend the Washington State Labor Council convention.
Being new to all this I chose my wardrobe with the intent that I’d be an inexperienced outside but I would be the face of my union and best to look well why doing that. Because of these choices I may have overdressed.
Thing is the attire here runs the gambit from shorts, sandles, and t-shirts to suits and formal dresses. True I am wearing a tie, blazer, collared shirt, and burgundy corduroy pants. True I maybe on the more over dressed end of the spectrum but there was no call when a worker from my local, but attending as a delegate from another trade, to say, “You’re overdressed.”
And perhaps I shouldn’t have replied, “Better than underdressed.”
In the end who knows.

Dealey Plaza

July 19, 2014 Leave a comment

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How many others have stood on this spot and taken this picture?

Afterwards I had a tour consisting of explanation of many other details.

Voyage to Odd Places part One

July 17, 2014 Leave a comment

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After passing under the Tacoma Narrows Bridge


Realistically to travel by rail isn’t about speed.
But those views.
Unless you are in a town in which case there is nothing quite like the back alley industrial sections that the train must traverse before reaching either the single room deport or the grand stations that exist in Seattle or Portland along the Cascade line.
Still there is something about traveling by train. Perhaps the nostalgia and pace is what appeals to me or the lack of interest in what food or drink I want to bring on the train and once I’m done there a bistro car can help fill in the gaps.

As a fan of aging institutions that refuse to die, after all I work in theatre, traveling by rail has a greater appeal than any sub sonic cattle car air liner could provide. After all TSA seems to enjoy performing actions fit of only for an awkward first date before a glorious wait in a soulless purgatory followed by the cramped conditions flying across the country in an aluminum tube only to emerge in another purgatory and then finally the real destination which could be heaven or hell depending on if it’s business or pleasure.

I recall the first time I flew.
Early in the 90s or the late 80s a post Christmas trip to San Francisco with my siblings and grand parents. An early morning Alaska Air flight where we were served a breakfast first for a comedy routine but in that moment it was all amazing. Fantastic, new and interesting. Moving so quickly to my destination before leaving the plane and emerging in a new city to experience a new sort of life. And far too many pictures of Alcatraz.

For a couple of years there was trip to Colorado and wilderness camp, a stream of Airlines now gone and of them I only recall flying Morris Air with it’s seats upholstered in fabric reminiscent of a neighbors couch, a general admission attitude toward loading the plane, and fact the plane felt like it might fall from the air. Even at that early age this budget flying didn’t seem the best idea for 3 kids on their way to camp but it’s what my folks could afford.

But now I sit on the train somewhere around Vancouver Washington heading north after a brief trip Eugene. Eugene where the weather was nearly 100 degrees and far outside the normal summer weather for the Pacific northwest… and as I return from getting a Kokanee (Kokanee: Glacier Fresh Beer ) what do I discover but a little Sinatra accessed via the head phone jack next to my seat. Truly a glorious day. But Eugene.

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Now this trip was partially spur of the moment as my Mother and Grandmother were visiting as a possible last hurrah for my Grandmother and I happened to have some time off. Instead of wasting away in the heat of Seattle I boarded a southbound train at 2pm on Monday after working from 9am Sunday until 6am Monday to for a very brief visit.

Having no goals for this but a chance to visit with my family and a close friend of my Nana it worked out. Driving along a two lane road. Visiting the Ninkasi Brewery, find a Chuck’s like establishment and buying a fancy new squealer, and taking my mom to a bar that had open mic blue grass, good beer, which allowed her to smoke on their back deck. Right there will be something she remembers and tells people about.
So It was a good trip with my Nana even if she has changed from this powerful woman to a bent over shuffling old lady. It’s a change quite difficult for the whole family to deal with but when I am called on to speak with her about changing her living situation, her weakness, or convincing my family that as difficult as this is for us it must be hell for her to be betrayed by her body and mind. This isn’t a situation I ever expected to find myself in nor one I believe my family thought I’d be placed in but here I am.

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King Street Station

A bit of travel

July 14, 2014 Leave a comment

And there’s no cure like travel 
To help you unravel 
The worries of living today. 
When the poor brain is cracking 
There’s nothing like packing 
A suitcase and sailing away.

Bon Voyage from “Anything Goes”

Trip to Freddies

July 12, 2014 Leave a comment

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Went in and it was just me and the Big Dummy but I came out to some company.

Categories: Bicycle Adventures

Summer Weather

July 11, 2014 Leave a comment

For most of my life the fact that summer meant 90 degree weather hardly factored into my life.
Sure in ’99 I recall the first time I wander around Las Cruces only to arrive back at 310 Regents where I collapsed a sweaty mass on my dorm bed under refrigerated air.
There was a moment of pure bliss.
As I pulled a grey jersey sheet over my because it was a bit too cold.

Until I jet off for Dallas Texas finds Seattle in the grip of a heat wave. 90 degree days and people unaccustomed to that feeling.

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And this time I can’t sit by the side lines and give odd glances at the complaints and whining over heat because I feel it too. Not enough to really vary the way I live but enough to recognize I’m not used to this weather. Sure I’m not wearing any outer layer, no cotton blazer, or light jacket, or anything. Bare arms to the world for the first time in quite a while. Still not hot enough for me to buy shorts like I did in ’09 during the last bit of weather like this. Hell I hardly wore them but I had them… and I may have lost a pair at the streamline, not in a manner worthy of story but they were in my bag, I was drunk, and spilled my bag thereby losing my shorts.
Great story, huh?

Thing is I don’t mind being warm.
Sure living in Phoenix is not on the top of my list but these increased temperatures aren’t the end of the world for me. I don’t enjoy them far preferring to be cold and wearing wool then sweating in the few layers I still feel comfortable wearing but I can handle it. Some how I can find the resolve to endure the feeling, find the shade, and make do.
In fact today I set off wearing some black heavy cotton pants, a t shirt, and lighter pair of boots.
I had thought about my heavy boots but opted for my lighter pair. Sure each is leather but the different between mid calf and ankle is a lot.
yes I arrived warm, sweaty, but not feeling like death.
Had some water, bit of food, and some shade.
That was it.
In fact as I parked I put on my work shirt because I didn’t want to wander town in my Rhianna local crew shirt.
Also wearing just a t-shirt has become increasingly odd.