The sculpture in the picture above is called “Welcome”. It is located on the waterfront in Seattle, and it is new.
My husband and I went downtown today. I can’t really say when we last did that. I used to be familiar with downtown. Seattle used to be my town, I felt at home in it…I even drove in it. I knew which streets were one way and where to park.
Today we went to Metsker’s Maps. It is an old Seattle institution, an all around cool place, if you like maps and globes and stuff, which we do. It used to be in Pioneer Square but moved up by the Pike Place Market some years ago. This is only the second time we have been to the “new” location. We were searching for maps of southern South America for an upcoming trip.
Metskers was Metskers, and we were emboldened by that to see if, by some twist of fate, a store that specialized in Middle Eastern food preparation supplies was still there. No such luck, and seeking it through the crowds of what may be the last nice Sunday this fall soon had us regretting the impulse. We decided to walk along the water front to one of our old favorite places: The Owl and Thistle Pub, which is pretty close to both the water taxi and the last bus stop before the viaduct to get back to West Seattle.
Construction thwarted us. We stood and discussed and someone with a British accent stopped to give us some advice. In my town I didn’t know which way to go!
When I was a child my father worked for the Port of Seattle and, especially after the divorce, we spent hours exploring that very area on foot to kill time while Dad was working before we needed to catch the bus or train back to Corvallis, where we lived with our mother. (Now-a-days that would perhaps be considered neglect.) You wouldn’t know it for the same place if the Market weren’t there. The skyline has changed completely and is still doing so.
Following the advice of the “newcomer” we got down to the waterfront and walked along. Happily The Owl and Thistle was still there and they still have the same lovely happy hour menu.
As we waited for the bus, at a temporary stop because of construction. I noticed some tourists taking pictures. Inspired by the Discovery prompt from a couple of weeks back: Flâneur, I went up and took the same pictures, obviously if I want this to still be my town I am going to have to spend some time getting reacquainted. Trying to see the city through a stranger’s eyes seemed like a way to start.