Gone for a walk

Today was a long, and quite a successful day.

I was able to sleep in, which these days means until 9am, and had a leisurely breakfast a few minutes later. I knew it was the day for a solid lift at the gym, so I left my apartment at 11, and headed Downtown to Golds. On my way there, I got a text from some of my fellow coops asking if I was going to the Chinese New Years celebration that was happening later that day. I said “of course, just as soon as I finish my workout.”

45 minutes later I began my walk to the International District, also known as Chinatown. I had never walked that far Downtown before, I mean I’d been that far down, but this was the first time I was walking there during the day. After about 20 minutes, I found my destination, and it wasn’t too hard to spot, there were people everywhere.

I walked through a Chinese gate type thing, and I’m still not sure if it’s a permanent fixture in the area or if it was just there for the new years celebration.

chinatown2

The celebration itself only covered a few streets, and it was pretty packed, but plenty to see. I found the information booth and saw that a lot of the local food restaurants that were on the nearby streets were selling small sample meals for $2. I figured I’d walk around a little bit, and get in a line that didn’t look too long and grab some food. I found this restaurant called the Purple Dot Cafe, or something like it, and decided that this was a good a place as any to grab my lunch. I waited in line, and finally picked up my food, and it was delicious. I got two things, one was noodles with cabbage, which was a very welcome meal after my intense workout. The second thing was BBQ pork baked inside this white bread puff thing. That too, was very good.

chinatown1

I found a sunny spot (as you can probably tell) and began chowing down. As I ate, I looked around at what was going on. There was a stage in the center of the whole thing, and at the moment that I was eating, they had a young children’s costume pageant. I also say that there was a tent with some arts and crafts and decided to check it out.

This year is the Year of the Goat, and there was one arts and crafts station where you could make your own goat (it’s really a sheep, but we’ll gloss over that). I made my little sheep, and proudly carried him around for the rest of the time I was at the festival.

chinatown3

As you can see, my arts and crafts skills are much under utilized at the moment. I clearly have a talent for it.

I was looking at the schedule of performers and saw that after the kids pageant, there would be a Tokai Drum performance. Since it was only a few minutes until they were going to go on, I decided to stay, and I am very glad that I did. I love listening and watching to groups perform at festivals like that. It’s free entertainment, and it’s usually really good. They played four different songs, and it was so impressive to see how they moved as they were hitting the drums. It was a young troupe of drummers, and the kids ranged from ages 10-20. In a setting like that, where all of them are hitting their drums in unison, it becomes a very impressive musical number, and I hope that I get so see another Tokai drum performance someday.

After that it was time to walk home, shower, and watch the Habs game. After the first period ended I began thinking about how much of the day was left, and how cool it would be to see the sunset over the Olympias. I decided at 5pm that I would head out and find a good spot to see the sunset, and maybe get some awesome pictures. I began walking towards Puget Sound, but instead of walking all the way down to the water, I decided to make sharp right and go up the steep hill to Queen Anne. Queen Anne is an “area” of Seattle, just like the North End in Boston. It’s on top of a hill, and it boasts some of the steepest hills in Seattle. I think I walked up one of those steep hills.

I was about 3/4 of the way up the street, when I decided to turn around and see how far up I was, and that’s when I spotted Rainier. For some reason, I never expect to see it, and I think that that’s what makes seeing it so much more breathtaking. It is absolutely huge, and pictures don’t do it justice. It’s amazing to think that Rainier is 86 miles away from Seattle. As my mom told me today, that’s the same distance that NYC is from our house. But unlike NYC, Rainier looks like it’s in our backyard. I looked at a map and saw that there was a park down a perpendicular street to the one I was walking on and decided to take a chance and see how it was. Best decision I made today. Kerry Park is the best, and only, place to be if you want to see the entire city. It’s amazing to be able to see the Sound, the Space Needle, Downtown, and Rainier all at once, especially as the sun is setting to your right. I can’t wait to bring friends and family to this spot, so they can be as amazed as I am.

None of this would have happened if I hadn’t made spontaneous decisions. “Why Not?” is sometimes the best reason to do something, and you’ll be so glad you did.

Puget Sound from Kerry Park
Puget Sound from Kerry Park
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