For the record, this has absolutely nothing to do with a mid-90s Tom Hanks/Meg Ryan movie and everything to do with a trip that I took to Seattle two weeks ago, during Memorial Day weekend. Nor do I have insomnia — though most of my friends can attest to my night-owl tendencies. I just insist on having punny blog titles that are at least semi-related to the actual city, and that movie happened to be the only Seattle-centric phrase/pun/thing I could think of.
So why Seattle? Well, (a) I wanted to and (b) it was a holiday weekend. I had actually been to Seattle before — the West Coast was always a popular vacay spot for the family back when I was in elementary school — but seeing as I am no longer 9 years old, it doesn’t really count for much. If that doesn’t scream TIME FOR A REVISIT, I don’t know what does.
Besides, if I’m living on the West Coast, I ought to get myself acquainted with cities other than San Francisco, am I right?
Seattle is actually very much like San Francisco; if they were both people, they’d be in the same family — cousins, probably. Maybe even siblings. Actually, no wait. Seattle and Portland would be siblings, and San Francisco would be their cousin. And Bergen would be their Norwegian relative (apparently Bergen and Seattle are sister cities, a fun fact I picked up while walking around Ballard, the Scandinavian neighborhood in Seattle). Anyway, back to San Francisco and Seattle, as I have yet to go to either Bergen or Portland (both are on my list though!): they’re both cities with a residential community vibe, hills for blocks and blocks, a shortage of sunny days, grassy parks made for lazy weekends, and quiet residential neighborhoods that you will definitely not find in, say, New York. Instead of Berkeley, you get Fremont. And in lieu of the Mission, you get Capitol Hill. Coming from a San Francisco standpoint, Seattle is leafier (+1), less touristy (+1), less pedestrian friendly (-1), and its skies more downcast than SF (-1). And surprisingly, I managed to escape the infamous rain while I was here (the weather report told me it was going to rain all weekend. Thank god the weather report lied like a dead bird.), so +938234893 points in its favor.
After dropping off my bags in Fremont on my first day here, I was hungry because my stomach was having none of that wimpy airplane food. And in times of hunger, my stomach waits for literally no one. First stop? Paseo, a sandwich place up the hill famous for their much-beloved Caribbean Roast Sandwich. Juicy, marinated, slow-roasted pork sandwiched between two warm loaves of bread? Yes, please! Word to the wise: it’s ridiculously messy of a sandwich, so be prepared to forego any pretension and load up on the napkins.