A city wakes up slowly, clutching its blanket

Recently this Thursday morning, some intense marine layer fog covered the Emerald City.

Then by 10am, the fog slowly dispersed. Revealed, the busy downtown area would enjoy a lively blue day, followed by a dreamy evening of humid layers.

– Orion

I took the picture above, from high upon the Columbia Tower. Notice the tip of the Space Needle!

The new city perspective, from higher Seattle…

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The above shot is from the Madison and 4th Building in downtown Seattle, where I currently work these days. It’s from yesterday, being the last sunny day of summer, but with wind and cold outside ushering in the new Fall Season.

In the distance are two of Seattle’s tallest buildings. To the right, being the 76-floor Columbia Tower, a familiar tower to those who lived here over the last few decades. On the left to the middle is the more recent 44-floor F5 Tower, completed in 2017. Some cool facts: its glass walls are designed to handle temperature and energy use by letting in some sun rays and reflecting others. It uses the same glass as the One World Trade Center in New York City. It also holds rainwater for reuse, has a 35-foot-tall”living wall” where plants grow and have solar energy equipment upon its roof.

On the ground, the F5 is a visually puzzling, odd building among the other skyscrapers. Not exactly straight, and appearing too modern I think. From the ground, its pattern feels a bit off…

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But rising up high in another building and seeing a different angle of the F5, there is a barely seen symmetry to it, that is brilliant and awesome (see top picture).

Maybe someday, I will go inside and see more for myself. Hopefully, up high and getting the chance to look around, and gain new perspectives.

– Orion T

 

 

It’s just the rain…

“I went to bed and woke in the middle of the night thinking I heard someone cry, thinking I myself was weeping, and I felt my face and it was dry. Then I looked at the window and thought: Why, yes, it’s just the rain, the rain, always the rain, and turned over, sadder still, and fumbled about for my dripping sleep and tried to slip it back on.”

― Ray Bradbury,
Green Shadows, White Whale: A Novel of Ray Bradbury’s Adventures Making Moby Dick with John Huston in Ireland

The picture is a from a recent hour at a bus stop, using a camera with just enough battery life to capture this moment in Downtown Seattle.

Orion T

Outside the Amazon Spheres

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Live in Seattle, and you will eventually notice the overwhelming presence of Amazon. I mean this, because of the influence the mega-dominating capitalist empire carries, with its growing tech culture and innovation, here at a high price for the locals here.

Now stands the Amazon Spheres, an enclosed botanical paradise for some of its highest privileged employees. A forest world of its own, with a large variety of plants, waterfalls, and trees; all contained within an architectural wonder of curved glass and complicated steelwork.

This bonkers modern construction is the newest developed centerpiece for the many surrounding Amazon buildings towering over the city (and much blocking the view of the Space Needle for us regular folk). Its light after sunset illuminates Amazon’s current prosperity to its many local highly paid tech-workers, as they gather their food at the nearby Amazon Go shop, or the Whole Foods Market a few blocks away (now owned by Amazon).

The building is cool to look at, but I think would be more impressive if it stood for more than its company name. I have more to say on this, especially after visiting the inside of one of those spheres.

More on that, soon.

– Orion T

 

Picture of Today 10/7/2017 II, Seattle before the Rise

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The Seattle downtown area before the full sunrise., around 6:30 pm. This view came from Pier 66, where I was also taking shots of the Harvest Moon (see the previous post).

I loved every second of this moment.

– Orion T

Picture of Today 6/22/2017, A Seattle Dream?

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I took this shot with my phone. The location, being at the Washington State Convention Center in the outside park area. I am unsure of why I bothered taking this shot.

Perhaps, it was the interesting blooms on the large tree, giving an interesting look from afar. Or, the foreground of classy dressed people in some private event (being that it was fenced off and I was not invited). Or that, this area is normally empty on a weekday afternoon, and I originally passed through here to have a sit-down to relax on the nearby usual spot for sitting. I tend to take pics of things out of the ordinary.

Then, I looked at this later. And, I think it’s also the distorted backdrop of Downtown Seattle in the background. Perhaps, I think there is a combination of it all; where Seattle is now this growing magical land for the upper crust. But there are parts becoming slowly twisted, but go on unnoticed. That’s usually the part of the dream where someone wakes up, right?

Hmm.

– Orion T

Rare Seasonal Snow Night in Seattle…

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Last Thursday night, much of the Seattle lowlands got about one inch of snow. Such is a rare occurrence for this grand city. For myself, the new sights are very exciting, as I have never lived or ventured out in areas with normal snowfall. Yet, there is much beauty to appreciate in the first hours of the mass landscape transformation. Though I was not feeling well from a recent slip, I did go for a stroll in the wall and take some pictures of the Downtown area.

I was not disappointed. I hope you like the following, for these sights made me smile. To share for this festive holiday season is an added joy…

Sorry, I did not get a pic of the great Seattle Space Needle in that time. I underestimated the cold, and my body needed a return to my warm apartment. Perhaps, next time.

– Orion T

 

Picture of the Weekend, early December 2016..


Just a moment among many, where the holiday spirit was shared among the locals. Here, being Friday as some streets in the downtown area were shared for some happening at the nearby Westlake Center. Not quite feeling like a crowd, I enjoyed this jolly group of youngsters jamming with their brass, in a little march of their own. No names, cause, or message. Just a brief spirited jam playing some familiar Xmas tunes in the middle of the holiday lights and shopping madness. That’s enough for me.

– Orion T 

Picture of Today 9/23/16, Gloominess..

Happy Friday, they said..

Well, after a week of mostly sunny weather we find that at its end, along with an okay summer. The gloom is now here, along with the winds and the chills. I’m all right with this, as I feel this will be the sure sign that Fall has arrived. Get used to it, as the nights will come earlier. With that, I wil catch up to some reading and writing. 

Orion T

Picture of Today 7/27/16, The Over Light 

Just one light fixture among many at the beautiful, historic Union Station in Downtown Los Angeles. One could look around and see the well-preserved arches, talk windows, shined floorways, wooden surfaces within the grand halls. Passing through such a picture, can feel blessed for that feeling of time.

Here’s a a quick unedited pic of that noticeable setting below…

– Orion T

Picture of Today 3/7/16, Looking Up

Looking up the tallest building in Seattle, the Columbia Tower.

However, this side is the shorter part of it (overall called the Columbia Center), not sharing the full 73 stories (943 ft.) of its full height. I do appreciate it’s unconventional curved shape of this particular view. It’s the simple perspective I especially enjoyed for a minute on this otherwise mundane Monday.

– Orion T

Picture of Today 12/24/15, Twas the Night..

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‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the city
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse..

Perhaps probably because the night twas too cold for stirring, and more like slumping. I noticed much slumping from the few stragglers outs past 7pm tonight, working out the last minute shopping, holiday planning, probably finished with extra work shift hours (including myself)

I passed by the old Pike Place Market in downtown Seattle while admiring the serene calm of this cold night. I finished some last minute errands in the area, with high hopes to see the fullish Moon up high. It was there, I knew. But sadly, too much cloud density to capture such a rare view this Eve. Maybe where you are, the sky is clear. If so, go outside and take a look.

And to all, have a wonderful warm and silent night. Then, have a Merry Christmas Day!

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-Orion T

Picture of Today 12/8/15, Spinning Bright

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I think heavy rain inspires me to mess with the settings on my camera. Here at Westlake Park in Downtown Seattle, I went for a new long exposure in the night. It was another wheel (see previous posting for the other wheel), but this time a little smaller with horses on it. Are there other big wheels for me to gaze upon in this Emerald City?

And for a bonus picture, here is the full stop. The rain kept going.

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Orion T

Picture of Today 9/17/15, Tearing Down Yesterday..

Broken down, leaving memories behind.

These ruins are what’s left of the old Greyhound Central Bus Terminal in Downtown Seattle. The terminal first opened in 1928, and underwent many renovations and changes since. Here are some pictures. Click here, for some history and pictures of the former station.

In its place will be a new fancy hotel, towering as Seattle’s highest for those rich folk seeking a temporary stay in the Downtown. Meanwhile, the Greyhound bus service has a new location for Seattle, in the south SoDo region close to the Century location. New memories will build from both, bringing more layers to the ever-changing history of this great city.

– Orion T

Pictures of Today 6/6/15, Midnight Moon

 

 Shortly after Midnight, last night..

The Moon began as larger and yellowish on the horizon, from around yesterday at 11:40pm, huge but not quite full (waning). I just boarded the Washington State Ferry on Bainbridge Island, alone and bound for my trip back home in Seattle. The night air was warm, but staining wind from the slow trip out (from the moving boat or the night air, I could not tell).

So eventually after some texting, I reached for my camera and lens. I grumbled at the the sudden forgetting of my 300mm capable zoom lens during the start of my trip. Oh well, I have my small 50mm to work with, and a very rocky boat with winds outside. The trick to all this, is to simply enjoy the view and recognize the outside atmosphere as quiet and beautiful, for my next stop will be the Downtwon area..where construction noise and the occasionally smell of piss around the dock area will eventually disturb my senses. 

The trip was about 40 minutes, and here are some pictures I took for you..

 
         

 Orion T

Pictures of Today 4/24/2015, Next Stop, Pioneer Square Station, Doors to your Right..

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Under the streets of old Seattle, transitions happen. There is much beauty in this process, though many of us are too busy to appreciate its design.

Many are local citizens, going about their daily commutes to and from work. They would likely be relieved to not take part in the rising traffic jams above and around the growing Downtown area. Some probably have a good book, or an old timey newspaper. Others have their mobile device; perfect for casual video games and the occasional texting conversation (once out of the tunnel). While their lives are usual and mundane, they still take part in their daily exercise of change. This tunnel is a major part of that process…a maker of their daily progress gone smooth.

Some are a bit excited to make this transition to or from their homes abroad, as they are often tourists, or weekend visitors to those special loved ones or good friends. Either ways, the stop inside a tunnel station is a major turning point in that journey. An official step, to leave all behind or welcome all forward. Some changes may be from the stop before. Even so, the above world is still different than the one left behind 10 minutes ago. All change becomes accepted, and planned well with the beginning, or the end of this transition point.  We forget the in-between, very quickly.

Take this stop in Pioneer Square, also known as the Pioneer Square Link Light Station. You may catch a number of buses, or the Link Light railbus throughout the King County area.

This 25-year old station lies beneath the older, more historical part of Seattle. Everything here below, feels like the opposite of the town above. It feels open, almost quiet except for constant whining of buses and railcars. Everything seems simple, as to a purpose and options on what could do here. Yet above, the world is busy and complex. The streets seem to have less space. There are unpleasant smells sometimes. The destinations are nearly infinite, with many directions one could choose from. This is different from airports, and open business districts and suburbs of the destinations where the transits follow beyond the Downtown areas. When you leave the space between spaces, a transition complete and new normal comes accepted.

Still, that station below is quite incredible; a retro-futuristic fantasy come to life. Here are pictures of this grand stop; the amazing tunnel between. Sorry, I did not take any pics of the grand exterior of the stairway. My camera battery was “exhausted” by then. My change, was to leaving this alone, forgetting it all; and next choosing that good place to enjoy a good slice of pizza.

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Pictures of Today 3/20/15, Hello Spring..

Today is almost done, and what a day it was!

Tis the first day of Spring, and very wet. In the Seattle and surrounding areas, there was light on/off rain. Very pleasant to walk through, especially throughout my paths. Here below, are some moments with notes..

Within a downtown park by the Washington Convention Center, a favorite little tree stands. Here, the petals seem very relaxed in the rain.

And the petals, I think enjoy this rain as much as I. Let em drop..

Much later, I journeyed far to the city of Redmond for a short research gig at Microsoft’s main headquarters. A nice busy place, but what got my attention for the longest was this little bird outside. That was a very chirpy fellow, but also not letting me too close for the more detailed shot.

And then, after a long walk and briefly ending up lost. I found myself in a parking lot of scattered sakura blossom petals. There is seriously a lot to take in, and a little dangerous. More on this, tomorrow..

Finally, back in Downtown Seattle. Here is another pretty tree in the rain.

Up close and personal..

Later, I took a pit stop at the Kobe Terrace Park at the International District. When last here, there was little on the ground. I said I would be back to see them fallen, in an earlier post last weekend. Now…

More on this tomorrow, or the next day..or whenever I get around to it. But soon, I promise.

Picture of Today 3/5/15, the Worm Moon



Tonight, we have the Full Moon special. 

This particular moon today is known to some as the Mini Moon, as it appears somewhat smaller. Though smaller by the naked eye, the light flashed a quite illuminative cascade across the night sky. This moon is also known to the Algonquin Native Americans of the New England area as the Worm Moon, as the ground softens for the worms in the coming Spring season (or the Sap Moon, as maple trees also begin to sappen). 

For my time on the room tonight, this is just the Full Moon, doing what it does best.

Golden Noir Nights in Rain City..

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Sometimes, I feel like a bystander in the first chapter of some long mystery. Especially, when the rain happens through the night.

The rain does this sometimes, because nights like this are best described in long opening descriptions, establishing mood and environment. I love this kind of rain, not dense or rough enough to have myself rushing to the next bus; but to casually stroll through and let the wetness sink in (and take pictures). The wet sprinkles are enough to appreciate my surroundings, and think of what has not changed since the noir days of old fashioned city life. This being, how we all become a part of our environments, yet don’t know it. The rain in this city can places between between reflections, making new shadows of us dwelling through. We are all getting by, to become new stories or develop that next chapter.

Just be careful out there.

Shots above and below are of the Westlake Center area of Downtown Seattle; a place that is best in after hours, and in the rain. Also, I really like these shots. I will be coming more of this in the near future.

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Picture of Today 2/4/15, Corner Full of Corners

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Gotta love the crazy of downtown Seattle’s Westlake Center front..

It’s a great place to walk in the rain, because one can notice the crazy conglomerate of rectangles and squares better when looking down. And when clean, it all seems like a newly mopped floor.

Look…
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Chihuly Glass Art at the Benaroya Concert Hall..

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Walk around Downtown Seattle enough, and eventually you will notice the strange glass art of Dale Chihuly, famed artist of curvy glass sculptures. I have seen his work is at the public library, various local businesses, and his museum neighboring the Space Needle. But of his most profound work I have personally seen, is at the Benaroya Concert Hall in the Downtown area.

Here, there are two monster sculptures at opposite ends of the long hall entrance, titled the “Crystal Cascade.” Both way three tons, and each measure about 12 feet wide by 15 feet long. Both are made up of many individual glass pieces, somewhere brought together and hung as the strangest of chandeliers.

Below are pictures I shot over the weekend, of this Crystal Cascade (from the side, and from the bottom)..

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For more on Dave Chihuly, visit Chihuly.com.

Picture of Today 2/1/15, Keep the Lights on

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Today will be a day not forgotten by Seahawk fans, or sports fans in general.

In short, the home team would have won this Super Bowl football finale. Both teams played a great, very tough game. The difference in victory was less than a yard to go. But in the end, a terrible call happened for the Seahawks, and perhaps the worst play in football (definitely in Super Bowl history) was made. Even so, it’s all a reminder of how human we can all be. Mistakes can be made, as imperfections are born from our god-given ability to make them. The best thing to do is brush them off, learn from these, and move on.

Then with new wisdom, there will be new victories to strive toward..like next season for the Seattle team. I look forward.

(Go Hawks!)

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