Thursday, September 22, 2011

seattle - day 1

my dear friends becky and joseph tied the knot over the weekend, and as i was invited to be one of the lucky groomsmen, this was the perfect opportunity to get reacquainted with the pacific northwest. the last memory i had of seattle was checking out the space needle with my family when i was 13, so i had no recollection of the people, the weather and the culture that makes up the emerald city.

i flew in on virgin america, arriving promptly at noon in advance of the 2pm wedding rehearsal. after a short delay at national car rental - which i bypassed a 30-minute line completely by using the electronic kiosk - i took my free upgrade to a toyota camry and jumped on the I-5 north to downtown. since i had about an hour to burn, this was a perfect time to steal away a visit to pike place market for a quick bite to eat.

i settled for a seat at the counter at steelhead diner for their chicken & sausage gumbo and a pint of pike's kilt lifter before scrambling back to palace ballroom... where i finally met joseph's mom! for the uninformed, ms. yam is the modern day equivalent of sesame street's famed snuffleupagus, a woolly friend of big bird's who nobody believed existed. not saying ms. yam is woolly, but you get the drift...

heidi arrived via light rail at westlake center around 4pm, so i walked over to pick her up and bring her bags to the car. we had a few hours before rehearsal dinner at wild ginger, so we took that opportunity to explore the public library, which - designed by renowned dutch architect rem koolhaas - is one of the coolest buildings i've ever been in. from the outside, it looks like a bizarre rhombus construct, but inside it's clean lines, gorgeous lighting and even a floor that's completely red in color. and i mean completely.

dinner was at wild ginger, a feast of southeast asian treats consisting of spicy salads, seafood, skewers and curries. mostly, it was a great chance to unwind with good friends and good food before the ever-stressful wedding day. sadly, heidi and i had to skip out on after-dinner drinks at a local irish bar, as we made the trek to my cousin's place in nearby mercer island...

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