Friday, September 13, 2013

Seattle Day 1

By Chuck

I have never visited Seattle before, though I did see the Space Needle and downtown lights at night from a distance as I drove by a number of years ago. We planned to start with a Walking Tour--our preferred way of being introduced to a city.

Claire, bright-eyed and savoring her morning cappuccino

Chuck's snack, cinnamon roll and latte, waiting for the Seattle walking tour to begin

One of the newer downtown buildings, set against smaller structures

Smith Tower. Mostly an office building, except that a wealthy family managed to get permission to inhabit the pyramid portion of the tower structure, designing it to their own specifications. This was once the tallest building on the West Coast. 

 A number of years ago, Seattle began to tear down old buildings and replace them with newer structures. One look at this sinking ship parking lot and locals began to see the wisdom of preservation.

This is the original brown Starbucks logo on the original building. If you look carefully, you can note changes in the direction of modesty for the current logos in all other Starbucks locations. It is virtually impossible to walk more than two blocks in any direction and not find one of their coffee shops in the Northwest downtown areas.

A pallisade that has been preserved in Pioneer Square in old town Seattle

A cheese factory along the main drag of the Pike Street Market area

Buskers are a common sight in Seattle, especially in the Pike Street Market area. The female member just finished clog dancing while playing her guitar. 

A statue of Ivar--of Ivar's House of Clams--feeding French Fries to the seagulls. This is encouraged to this day. 

So, I decided to give it a try. Unfortunately, the seagull was faster than the camera. He grabbed that french fry right out of my hand!

Cute sign

No, the image is not rotated. This is part of a sculpture exhibit that also furnishes lighting to the rent-controlled housing in the immediate area. 

 This wall is covered with dried chewing gum. Originally prohibited, it has been embraced; it is even used by some groups to market performances or announce weddings.

 This is one of the local breweries. There are dozens, if not hundreds, in the Northwest.

Our brewery guide. She provided great entertainment as she shilled her products.

 The 1962 Space Needle in the background, seen from the harbor area

Alley sculpture in Seattle. It probably also keeps people from climbing the wall or jumping the fence.

Pike's Market is claimed to be the oldest continuous Farmers Market in the U.S. The produce looked beautiful. They also sold flowers to many, many tourists and locals. We wondered how they managed to get them home.

This moving sculpture of a hammering man outside the SAM--Seattle Art Museum--is a tribute to Labor. On a recent Labor Day they gave it a break from its normal 24/7 duties and stopped it.

A Totem Pole in Old Town. The Original was stolen by leading town citizens. They later offered to pay, but never did. The town later requested a new one to replace the fire-destroyed original; they never paid for that, either. But, totem poles have different purposes and this replacement has an upside down frog near the top. This is a symbol of shame to those responsible for the outrageous theft and deceit.
Richard, our Seattle Walking Tour guide and bust of Chief Seattle

Oldish building in Seattle's Old Town. All non-wood buildings downtown were constructed after the ravaging fire of 1889.

A real highlight of Seattle was the Olympic Sculpture Park.  We walked along the trails taking in the views and the art.  A very pleasant time.

 Haven't seen one of these in years

 Claire seated on the back portion of the eyeball chair sculpture

 This fountain, just outside the Sculpture Garden, has two figures--a man and a boy (currently hidden from view.) The water display changes over time, revealing different portions of the statue, symbolizing the dynamic relationship between father and son.

 Another eye sculpture in the Sculpture Garden

A playhouse for all ages, part of the Sculpture Garden.What you are seeing is all there is to the house. It is built on a slope--there is no lower portion. If you are either very small or stoop over, you can enter the inside through the partial front door.

Eagle by Alexander Calder

Richard Serra's Wake

 Wall art inside the Seattle SG

Funky little shop in corner of downtown parking lot