Seattle is a place that looks like home and feels like something new, so we did all my favourite things that I would do at home. We went to bookstores, drank yummy coffee, perused record stores, ate our way through downtown, touched way too many vintage dresses, and stopped at the flower markets (although Grace never lets me buy anything because she says it makes her sad when the flowers die). Felicia said, “Sometimes you don’t know whether you need to get out of your city or if you just need to get out of the city,” and I’ve been taking the time lately to do a bit of both. I’ve always been frustrated in not knowing what it is I really need or having others unable to articulate what they need, but I’ve been learning over and over again that figuring out what we really need is a worthwhile, timely process. If we really knew what we needed, we wouldn’t need anything or anyone else, ya feel?
i guess I have trouble keeping my feet still, so big surprise, I’m in Portland! We took a short stop in Seattle, and here are some pictures from the trip so far:
SOUTHERN RESTAURANT: Screen Door (GET THEIR FRIED CHICKEN!!!)
ICE CREAM: Salt & Straw (worth the wait, definitely get their Honey Lavender!)
FOOD CART: Nong’s Khao Man Gai (who knew chicken and rice could taste so good!)
BOOK STORE: Powell’s City of Books (AN ENTIRE BLOCK FILLED WITH BOOKS!!!)
PUB/BREWERY: Deschutes Brewery Portland Public House (I usually don’t like IPAs, but their Belgian IPA is really good!)
ART AND GRAFFITI SPACE: Under Pressure
ITALIAN RESTAURANT: Wienstein & Gavino’s
BAR: Bar B1 (we got frozen beers or ‘ice cream beers’ here!!)
TWO DOLLAR CHOW MEIN: Two Chow (he gave me a free spring roll, because I took his picture.)
I have arrived in the land of BYOW (Bring Your Own Wine), French everything, and best of all, brunch city! Here are a few shots form my first two days here, but it’s been so crazy since I got here that I’ve barely had time to transfer photos from my camera to my laptop. In the words of my favourite Montrealer, Francis (actually, I think he is the only person I know who’s actually from Montreal and not just here to study/work):
“This is Montreal. You pretend to be rich by going to fancy restaurants, bars, and shops. And then you end the night by eating poutine in the park.”
BAR: Big in Japan Bar (“the place you would take your mistress”)
COFFEE SHOP: Kitsune Espresso Bar
LUNCH: Lola Rosa (make sure you check the drawers for notes!)
DESSERT: Juliette et Chocolat
BAR: Bar le Saint-Sulpice
To the adventurous souls of Hong Kong –
Go to Cheung Chau Island. Take the slow ferry (it’s cheaper and you see more when you take your time). Go with someone who has steady feet and a lion heart. Hike up to the Reclining Rock and find the hidden beach. Touch the ocean. Crawl into caves and look for treasure (but make sure you bring a flashlight). Go beyond the boundaries – they are there to be crossed. Share your heart on top of a mountain. If you get bug bites and cactus needles in your legs, it’s okay, you will live. If you find yourself in a den of spiders, it’s okay, you will live through that too. Eat at dingy diners and then go out and eat more at street food vendors (make sure you try fish balls and mango mochi). Ride bikes and remember that nothing else can replicate salty sea breeze. Drink iced coffees at the Rainbow Cafe, write down your dreams, and post them on the wall. Watch the sun set.
Thank you for showing me that Hong Kong is not a cement block – that there are parts still untouched by industrialization, that the Old Hong Kong my father knows still lives on somewhere, and that there are old ladies who shout blessings of good health over you as you walk away.