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U.S. - Seattle Area, WA


Seattle

What can I say about Seattle? My first impression was that of passing the beautifully lit downtown area at night in a shuttle on my way to the University area. I was absolutely tired from the long flight, full day of work, and the time...after 1 a.m. in the morning. Strangely, I was looking forward to the experience of living in Seattle.


I really am not an adventurous person of any kind, but at that moment, I found myself infinitely brave about the life ahead of me. Seattle could be my home...


         
Pike Place Market


Seattle is literally a city of Coffee. It's impossible to walk few blocks without finding at least 2-3 coffee shops. The coffee comes in all shapes and sizes, all kinds of flavors and colors.

I think this is one of the landmark sign. You can't help but notice it as you are walking down toward the market. Then you suddenly crave a cup of coffee...hot or cold depending on the weather.

 
     
Beecham's cheese place at Pike Place Market


You see all the tulips in the picture, but you will not always see tulips in these flower stalls at the market. Depending on the season, you get an array of all kinds of flowers. They are usually very affordable, even for a poor student like me. Other items on the other hand, I suspect to be little over priced.

 
   
Pike Place market Flower stalls



This is not the famous seafood stall where they throw fishes around...yes, there is one such place. I just wanted to take the pictures of tasty creatures. I studied them, but I love to eat them...what can I say, I am an omnivore after all.

 

Seattle Center, space needle


 
Seattle certainly has plenty of water...one of the places you can see them is at the Pike place market. There are other piers, but this one is the most popular.          


Seattle center musical fountain


 
This is a view of space needle from within the seattle center. I guess it is after all not such a bad looking structure. I hear it was an architectural phenomenon. There's underground supporting structure several hundred feet in depth.          


Tulips...more tulips


 
So this is about I don't know how many Seattle's best coffee near the Pike place market. That's not all of it...there are starbucks, Tully's, all assortment of privately owned shops.
If you wish to meet someone in seattle, don't ever make a coffee house the place to meet.          


View from the water tower at the Volunteer park


 
People frequently asked me what's up with me and my fascination for cemeteries. I don't know why. I know what it is not...I don't have liking for horror stories or scary events. That is not why I love cemetaries. Perhaps it is the quiet. The absolute stillness one can find in cemeteries even in the midst of the city.          


Lakeview cemetery

 
This is the oldest section of Seattle. I am told that Seattle was built on mud flat filled with saw dust. They had such flooding and unstability that there were sink holes in streets where people had drowned. There were horrible sewer system that only worked during low tide. It seems so funny to schedule your toilet time according to the tide table, but I suppose it is better than to have it come up back at you.          


Pioneer Square

 
Fremont is one of the many little communities in Seattle. Seattle has many little communities within its city...U Dist, Fremont, Wallingford, Ravenna, Ballard...etc. etc. Each one seem to has its own characteristic and flavor.
I hear the flavor of Fremont is its artsiness. You can see that readily in this giant sculpture of Troll underneath the bridge.          


1st Starbucks at Pike Place market

 
Directly south of University of Washington, across the canal is this Arboretum. It occupies a huge portion of Seattle, so if you have ever taken a look at the map of the Seattle, you'd find it readily.
You can either drive through it or possibly go on a little hike/walk. It is exceptionally peaceful place, free of any noise of the city...a sanctuary of sorts.         

Arboretum
  


University of Washington

 

University of Washington    

Downtown Seattle near Pike Place market



I guess one always has the best impression of the city when one visits it for the first time. It is the subsequent visits that really tells us the essence of that city. I think I knew I had found the right place to live when every visit, made me feel more and more close to the city.          

Perhaps that is why so many people love Seattle despite the constant rain, constant cloudy weather. We find all this quite nostalgic.




Seattle's best coffee at Pike Place Market
(Now Seattle's Best Coffee is no more)


I am definitely not a huge fan of cheese. I am one of those few people who doesn't really like cheese, but the smell of this place even drew me close. Even if you don't like cheese, you will certainly be fascinated by the process. If even that doesn't appeal to you, there is this incredible french bakery right next door.    


Pike Place market Flower stalls



I think the seasonal flowers, vegetables and fruits are what made me first started to like Seattle. It reminds me of my childhood home. We had different vegetables and fruits...of course, flowers, depending on the month of the year. During my years in S. California, everything had just been there year around. Yet the taste is so much different. In season fruits can't compare to the fruits that seem to purposelessly lie in wait off-season.      




Seafood shop at Pike place market




I am still not quite sure what is so attractive about this Space Needle. It is somewhat cool to look at at night with all the lights, but why has it become a landmark?

There is also this weird structure next to it that supposedly resemble a broken guitar when looked from above, but I saw the pictures and I do not believe it!


The Seattle harbor


I thought I was hearing things. As we got kicked out of the food court due to some fire alarm, we found ourselves in front of the weird looking fountain. I guess it is in theme with the space needle. But as it started to move this way and that with the music...I was in for a surprise. I am such a sucker for strange things.


Good view of space needle


April was the month of the tulips. Apparently there a Tulip festival somewhere. If I had enough time, I might have driven there, but as it was, this is just a small preview of the event.


Seattle's best coffee, another one near the Pike place market (Unfortunately now it is Starbucks)



There are many many parks in Seattle. I guess the whole city could be termed one giant park. It has so many more tree than any other city I've been to.
Volunteer park has a very cool water tower, not used any longer, but has a fabulous view of the city. The stairs to the top could be a little bit of a challenge.


Lakeview cemetery


Maybe it is that I feel little of possible remnants of people who have gone by. It is not that I like all the cemeteries...just the very old ones with beautiful gravestones. Something about them tells me stories. I can imagine this and that and ponder...I could possibly even claim that I ponder about life.




Pioneer Square





So they come up with this brilliant idea of making the first floor basement, level the hill and fill the mudflat to be more stable. It seemed like a great idea after the fire that burnt all of the city, but the people wanted to stay in business even then. So they just built the houses on their land, the streets themselves began to rise. A whole mess of people needed to go down the stairs to actually get to the front entrance of the stores.

What brilliant planner...if there was any, came up with such idea, I can't even imagine. But the underground tour that explains all this is quite interesting.




Fremont Troll




It is almost impossible to imagine only 10 years ago, Starbucks company was not such a big deal. This is the first Starbucks, with its strange logo.



Arboretum


University of Washington


Although I work at an ugly part of the campus, most of the campus is very beautiful. In April, cherry blossom petals fall on you like a pink rain. There are trees everywhere. It almost feels like you are entering a forest, not a university.




University of Washington

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