Riding the Great Weather

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Lately, the warm and sunny weather has brought out the best in people.

For me over the recent weekend, the effect been more exercise by moving around more. I also got some nice new walking shoes, making my recent walk through the West Seattle longer, more enjoyable. Also, I did some reading and writing

Alki Beach of West Seattle felt especially pleasant, with people in abundance doing many good things possible and special to this wonderful climate. The best of which included volleyball, kayaking, jogging, conversing, holding hands, eating ice cream out of a cone, dog-walking,  and leaving their mobile devices alone.

The summer is about a month away, with more days of good sun to make up for some of the gloom and freeze of the prior months (at least here in the Pacific Northwest US).

I look forward!

– Orion T

I shot the picture last Saturday afternoon. No idea on who the bicyclist is, but his balance skills are excellent. And I think he probably appreciated the cheers in the distance (and a big thanks to him for allowing me time to get my camera ready). I could also overhear someone whistling and complementing his physique. That got a chuckle out of me.

The sky suddenly changed…

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An hour after the noon during my lunch break, I enjoyed the warm weather with a mix of blue sky, passing grey clouds and sunshine. The calm was highly appreciated for my otherwise busy life.

What a beautiful day.

A few hours later, the rain suddenly poured heavy, with a little thunder mixed in. I borrowed an umbrella from work, which soon broke while waiting for the bus (came 15 minutes late).

Argh, stupid umbrella.

Eventually, the rain slowed, just in time for my long bus ride to finally end (traffic from Bellevue was a bit rough). The atmosphere of downtown Seattle felt a bit humid from the mix of warm weather and sudden dampness. I walked steady pace in a homeward direction, looking forward to a big bowl of tomato soup.

I forgot the broken umbrella, still on the bus. Oh well.

On the way, I passed by the public use ping-pong table in the outside recreational open of Westlake Park. I stopped, and admire its smooth, wet reflection of the world above, after these sudden changes of unresting weather.

Still, a beautiful day.

– Orion T

This Sunday afternoon…

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I had a plan to relax outside, though sometimes that takes effort beforehand.

After sleeping in late, catching up on messages, fixing breakfast, finishing laundry, playing Boggle on my phone, taking a shower, answering more text messages, and then watching one more episode of the new Lost in Space series on Netflix (it’s quite good).

Then, I could ignore the bright sunshine any further, and finally left my apartment a little past 1:00 pm).

I took the bus to the Fremont neighborhood, walking into the weekly Fremont Sunday Market. The area is a few blocks long, with many tents and tables selling a variety of used and new goods. I highly recommend this path, for gifts and interesting home decoration. With all that, strolled through the merchant tents, browsing but not purchasing. Sometimes, I just enjoy looking at random things.

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I ended my stroll at the food trucks, feeling somewhat excited about the “Taco Libre Truck Showdown” going on (and the reason I came to the Sunday Market), where tacos of special variety were sold. To participate as a taster of these tacos, one would likely spend much time in a long line for pricey, tiny “street” taco resembling eats. I tried a couple of trucks, and was no happy at the bits of things normally I do not associate with tacos thrown in for that  “gourmet”  or “fusion” flavor (arugula, fruit bits, weird sauces I can’t figure out)..and consumed in three or four bites. Or, I just miss my old living regions of Southern California, where taco trucks delivered bigger, fuller tacos at a cheaper price with much less of a line.

I looked for lemonade to consume. Only one stand found in the area, with an absurdly long line for just the lemonade. Perhaps, it was really high-quality lemonade. I did not stick around to find out.

Leaving my disappointments behind, I found a nice spot by the by the Fremont Canal Park passageway and sat down on a grassy area before a large tree. There were ducks, geese before me in the waters ahead. I had a brief conversation with someone nearby feeding the waterfowl, something about the motherhood and caretaking of such.  Then, I took a short nap, did some reading and absorbed a mix of the mid 70’s sunlight and passing cloud cover above.

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All was enough to enjoy and make the day worthwhile.

– Orion T

Colorful Gardens at the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival

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I recently visited the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival in Northern Washington State on a gray day this April. Some of that was detailed in my previous post, Colorful Views…). As amazing as the tulip fields were, I was also impressed by the Roozengaarde display garden area. Here, there are “90+ varieties of tulips and over 150 flower bulb varieties in total. Included are tulips, daffodils, hyacinths, crocus, muscari and other specialty flowers.”

The colors this time of year stand out, and a worthwhile attraction for tourists and locals in the Pacific Northwest. According to its website at tulips.com, the display garden is open all year round. Seeing these with the fields during the festival, is just an added bonus.

I now share some pics of wonderful display garden below (click on each for the bigger picture):

The admiration and picture-taking was a joy, but personally seeing this for yourself is the best experience, especially with friends or family. For more info, click here and check out the Roozengaarde official site at Tulips.com for more info about tulips and purchase options

– Orion T

 

 

Colorful Views at the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival

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A few days ago, me and local friends ventured out north in the Washington state to the rural area of Skagit Valley by Mount Vernon, to check out its annual Tulip Festival. This wonderful time throughout April is when the tulip farms are at their colorful peak, growing miles of freshly blooms tulips and daffodils. Designated areas for up close viewing are open to the public, with a small admission charge

For the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival of 2018, there are multiple areas to visit and check out, as I entered the Roozengaarde Display Garden and Fields. Stunning place it is, even with the gray weather and muddy grounds (rained hard the day before). I admired and learned much of the tulip life and care that goes into them. I also took some pictures, of which the fields are shared below (click on each to fully appreciate):

The festival time goes on until the end of the month. The tourism on the weekend can be a bit heavy, especially if the rain is gone and the sun is shining. So, be ready for a slow drive when close and lines at the entrance and foot court. It’s all well worth it with friends and family.

For more info, check out tulipfestival.org.

I meanwhile, also show many great up-close shots of the tulips in their enclosed garden area, of which I will share in another post. Look forward!

– Orion T

 

 

 

Looking at some Romanesco Broccoli

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I past by some interesting, and larger sized broccoli at Sosio’s Produce inside Pike Place Market in Seattle. Only $4.99 a pound for this, and what the signed said was “Organic Italian Broccoli Romanesco.”

According to a Wikipedia entry on Romanesco broccoli, it has grown in Italy since the 16th century. Also known:

“Romanesco superficially resembles a cauliflower, but it is chartreuse in color, and its form is strikingly fractal in nature. The inflorescence (the bud) is self-similar in character, with the branched meristems making up a logarithmic spiral. In this sense the bud’s form approximates a natural fractal; each bud is composed of a series of smaller buds, all arranged in yet another logarithmic spiral. This self-similar pattern continues at several smaller levels. The pattern is only an approximate fractal since the pattern eventually terminates when the feature size becomes sufficiently small. The number of spirals on the head of Romanesco broccoli is a Fibonacci number.”

Fascinating!

– Orion T

Fallen Blossoms in the Early Spring

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The Seattle weather has been very fickle lately. The sunshine remains infrequent and the rain a familiar thing that happens 2-3 days a week. Below, are the cherry trees of early spring, reaching the peak of bloom throughout the Emerald City for this year.

Locally, more blossoms have fallen into scatters. The recent rains dampened many, keeping them moist until the groundskeepers collect. Until then, here are some shots last Sunday morning through a local stroll in Seattle’s Freeway Park…

Orion T