Sunday, February 27, 2011

I could get used to this

Woke up and decided to be ambitious, went to a local park on the waterfront. Sat on some driftwood and looked at Whidbey Island, across the Sound. Watched dogs chase eachother around, and set off on Objectives B and C for the day, a better cup of coffee and some charcuterie classics.

It was warmer today than it has been (it's been snowing in recent days), low fifties and overcast. I really can't complain, even about the snow. It snows a bit in the morning, melts by evening, no big whoop. The roads are worse than they would be in MA for the same amount of snowfall because they don't really salt.

Speaking of which, I decided I wanted a pizza last night. I went up to downtown Everett to Brooklyn Brothers. I did not realize before I made this decision that:

1) The roads were awful - wicked snowy
2) There was a hockey game across the street at the Everett Event Center, meaning massive crowds and no parking.

In conclusion, the pizza was good but would have been great eaten hot. Live and learn.

Anyway, after being served a fantastic latte by a girl with thigh-length white-people dredlocks, I wandered towards my charcuterie destination, Le Pichet. Le Pichet is a little bistro mentioned in the book "Charcuterie" that the missus got for me. (Charcuterie, of course, is the french word for the discipline of preserving meat)

I got the chef's assortment, best characterized as "pork heaven." This included a piece of pork belly rilletes, basically a pork belly pâté.

If you've had scrapple, think of something with a sublter taste and a much lighter body, but with the same level of decadent richness. There was jamon iberica that blew away any proscuitto I've ever had, something that looked and tasted like a marvelous sopressata, and some terrine, all served with crusty baguettes and poisonously strong espresso.

I swung by the Pike Pub and Brewery (because I was pretty sure but not absolutely certain I was going to hell for gluttony yet) and tried a sampler of their beers, six in all. I'll note the best and worst, for brevity's sake.

Naughty Nellie "Golden Organic Artisan Ale" - Reminded me of Kolsch, or some other german lager. Light bodied, enough hop character to make it interesting.

Pike Kilt Lifter "Scotch Ale ... brewed with a small amount of peated Scotch whiskey malt" - The concept wasn't a bad one, a little smoky flavor was intended. It tasted like a blow to the face from a shovel wrapped in band-aids. Aggressive. The guy next to me was enjoying his, however.

Anyway, I could really get used to living here, if this is how this city eats and drinks.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Species Diversity Is Important

The "N" next to my picture? Oh, that's a conflict-of-interest icon for "new hire" that stays on for three years. I feel pretty visible.

I'm also the only guy in the whole joint wearing a tie, but I really like ties. Between a well-matched tie, a cup of coffee, and a pocket-full of writing utensils, I feel like a real engineer.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Moving to Shoreline

Well, there it is. The view from one of the top floor apartments at our new home in the Arabella in Shoreline, WA.

Signing lease tomorrow, stuff should arrive next week.

Pictures to follow when we move in, of course.

Lots of things I like about this place:

  • Walking distance indian grocery store, restaurants

  • Residential neighborhood

  • Catch bus downtown from front door

  • Last but most important: huge open plan kitchen, no damn breakfast nook

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Piroshki Piroshki

Got a mushroom piroshki and some borscht for breakfast. This little guy was able to jump up and catch a piroshki crumb from the air about six feet away, but then insisted on watching me eat the rest from the other side of the table.

I wish I had am actual camera, I saw an amazing view of Puget Sound. Looking at this picture, though, I probably could have taken a crappy one with the gear on hand.

It seems like Seattle is populated by some kind of coffee-swilling superhipsters; I wore flannel and walked around with coffee to blend in.

Friday, February 18, 2011


So, the flights went as well as could be expected. I made it to Manchester just a little bit late, big line, but managed to get on. My bags even managed to follow me to WA. Can't believe I've been on the move for 22 hours or so.

Driving up from SeaTac, I was shocked by the beauty of Seattle proper. Reminded me so much of San Francisco, with amazing views of the bay (and container cranes) and gigantic cloud-shrouded snowy peaks right over the water. Everything here is alive, no snow on the green grass. Bit overcast, 50 degrees. Had window down the whole way up to Everett.

The rental company gave me a Dodge Avenger for a "mid-size car." It's vulgar, chintzy american trash.

Everett itself reminds me a lot of the parts of L.A. I visited. Countless mexican restaurants and food trucks. Lots of vietnamese food too. Going to have to do that tomorrow.

Plan for tomorrow is get up way early, catch hotel breakfast around 6am and get my ass to Pike Place Market, check that out. I'd also like to do some intervals at the fitness center. I'm really looking forward to seeing the far side of 200lbs again, I've gotten unconscionably fat in the wake of completing the degree and the laziness that's followed. No moar, dammit, no moar.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

aw naw

and the beef jerky I made is too hot to eat.

Leaving: It's okay to cry

I went to see Somerfield and ended up bawling my eyes out on the way over.

Now's not much better. I had to go downstairs a little while ago and cried into my pillow like a child.

It comes down to guilt over leaving. I didn't expect this process to have such an emotional aspect, but I've been surprised how much it means to make this kind of leap. It seems like desertion, in a way. All of the things that will happen here in the future, I'll be a distant witness at best.

I'm reminded of Devin's Dad's funeral, the last time I cried like this.

It's the same feeling of helplessness and distance from one's friends. There's nothing you can say to someone that's gone, and you're stuck thinking about things you should have said.

I love all of you so much.