Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Crashing the Garden Party

I found a mention of Serafina Osteria's garden party on some twitter feed of things to do in Seattle and I didn't read much more than "sangria" and "pig roast" before I clicked "I'm Going" on the Facebook event. So I guess I bought my way in and didn't technically 'crash.'

In typical fashion, I overbooked myself. Seattle's Gay Pride parade was the same day and would be the perfect place to test the camera I'm shooting (colors! a variety of skin tones! thrusting!). Also, the forecast called for 85 and sunny with a 0% chance of my temporary apartment being air conditioned (apparently nobody has central AC here). I did what any enterprising young lady would do and I put on some sunscreen, clinical strength deodorant and wore the only thing in my closet that seemed appropriate for both - a striped maxi dress.

It says everything about Seattle that I've been here for exactly two weeks and I've already seen two parades with naked bicyclists. The Fremont solstice parade was the first, and that's sort of their 'thing,' painted naked bicyclists, so much so that on the local news the night before the anchor reminded us that body paint doesn't count as sunscreen. I guess I wasn't totally shocked to see nude cyclists at the Pride parade either, but boy are some people eager to strip down and hop on a bike. Maybe if it was cloudy ten months out of the year where you live, people would ride bicycles au natural there too.

The Pride parade was sweet, and weird, and colorful and festive, with big contingents of marchers from the corporations that call Seattle home, like Starbucks. The police and fire departments had marchers too, some of the uniformed men and women walking hand in hand with their boyfriends/girlfriends/husbands/wives. It was pretty touching. And then there was gay Batman on rollerblades.

Mixology as a sport:
lllet's get ready to muddle!!
A few blocks north of the parade route I hopped on a bus and arrived at Serafina, a charming little Italian restaurant on the east side of Lake Union. When I walked onto the patio I noticed first that the pig was buried in "La Caja China" and not available yet for photos (damn it) but there was a kind of Iron Chef of mixologists going on in an adjacent building (awesome). The room was crowded and it was hard to get a view of the action but man, if mixology is now a sport then count me as a fan. Outside I had a glass of perfect sangria with bite size chunks of boozy melon, took some photos of a guy breaking down a massive salmon with a knife, and talked to a couple who had just moved from my birthplace, Iowa.

I traded some food tickets for a generous piece of grilled salmon (not that one, a different one) and some asparagus. As someone who grew up in landlocked states, I can tell you honestly it was one of the best pieces of fish I've ever had.

Every day is like this in the summer.
I'm getting the impression that Seattle doesn't take summer lightly. I guess when it's dark for months on end, the sun finally coming out is a Big Deal. And here's a little-known fact: when it's nice out in Seattle, it's flat out perfect. They're like that meme I'm too lazy to look up. They don't always do sunny, but when they do, they do it right. Or something to that effect but funnier. You know what I mean. Now if they just had central air they might be onto something here.

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