I bet I know what you're thinking. Day Six? His Birth Week is almost over! Well, think again! I'm barely more than halfway through! Well okay, I guess since it's the end of day six, it's really more like two thirds through. That could still be argued as "almost over," I guess. But not as "almost over" as you might have thought. I've still got three more days of this shit! Because of course I include both weekends that start and end the week. In fact under normal circumstances I could have stretched this out to ten days like I did last year, except I this year I already had non-Birth Week related plans with Laney (Happy Hour) last Friday, whereas I have official Birth Week plans made with her the day after tomorrow.
Anyway! I had a second cancelation today, no brunch with Stephanie after all, for the same reason Evan had to cancel on Tuesday -- sickness. It feels like there was a lot of sickness going around this year, including me last week and the week prior. Bleh. And Stephanie canceling especially sucked as it made the first Birth Week she did not participate in since she very first started, in 2004. Oh, shit! I just realized something -- had she not canceled this year, she would have made four people who have been part of every one of my fifteen Birth Weeks to date! I totally spaced that she's been part of it fro the beginning. She even remained part of my Birth Week after she and Gabriel separated in 2010, and thus has been at the very least having lunch or brunch with me every year for more years after the separation than before. Well, not anymore, I guess! She texted me this morning she almost passed out twice and wasn't sure why she came to work at all. So of course it did make sense for her to go home.
I tried to see if Sara W at work wanted to get lunch after all, instead of going for a walk, but she told me she didn't quite have the time to go sit at a restaurant for a meal, but would still either go for a walk with me or maybe get coffee and a dessert somewhere. I chose the walk, so I coul maximize photo taking potential. I took 24 pictures on that walk, going through plenty of flora in both Myrtle Edwards Park and the Olympic Sculpture Park (the latter of which had more plants in bloom than I think any of the other many times I have walked through it), helping pad today's full photo set on Flickr out to a total of 38 photos. And this way, even though technically none of it was a botanical garden, much of the very curated Olympic Sculpture Park comes rather close.
I took the above phoot of Sara and me in a spot where it was basically plants in the Olympic Sculpture Park behind us, but technically we were still standing in Myrtle Edwards Park. Myrtle Edwards Park is much more of a standard Seattle Park, whereas the partially adjoining Olympic Sculpture Park is officially part of the Seattle Art Museum, and houses many abstract outdoor sculptures. (Both parks border the block on which 3131 Elliott Avenue, the building in which both Sara and I work on the fifth floor; Myrtle Edwards across the railroad tracks from it to the west, just beyond which is the Puget Sound; Olympic Sculpture Park bordering it to the south, just beyond which is the Seattle Waterfront and downtown.)
So, Sara and I walked roughly a 1.4-mile loop, first leaving our work building (where I waited 20 minutes for her to come down, not emailing her until 12:15 when I probably should have emailed her when I first arrived) and heading north on Elliott Avenue; crossing the footbridge that goes across both Elliott Avenue and the railroad tracks (although there's a staircase that goes up to the middle of it from the west side of Elliott Ave, which was what we did); ten coming back south through Myrtle Edwards Park, then crossing the raiload tracks through the Olympic Sculpture Park before going back up to our building again. We sat and chatted for a few more minutes at the fountain on the south side of our building. She gave me some relatively shocking news, which sounds like it will be good for her but sad for the rest of us.
Anyway, it was a rather nice way to spend what probably turned out to be, I don't know, 45 minutes? this afternoon. After the drizzle on Monday ended, the rest of this week has had truly gorgeous weather, way better than most of my Birth Weeks usually have. I also rode my bike there and back, and when I got back, having saved on brunch cost after all, I made myself a veggie chik patty sandwich for lunch. And then I edited, uploaded and captioned the 27 photos I had taken so far for the day.
After that, just as I had done after biking to Queen Anne Hill and back on Tuesday, I got inexplicably tired, and I took a nap for about 45 minutes. I don't know if there's a health issue going on here, or if I'm just getting old?
In any case, shortly after getting up from that, I took the bus to Northgate to meet Shobhit when he got off work at 5:00, since we were to have dinner with Lynn and Zephyr at a restaurant in Northgate at 6:30 and there was no sense in Shobhit coming home first. I took a #11 downtown and transferred to a #41 express to Northgate at Convention Place Station. The 41 has long been a very high ridership bus, and this being at about 4:30, the first one to come, with a huge line of people waiting at the stop, didn't even open its doors for more to get on, it was so packed with people. That bus turned out to be running late from the previous bus scheduled, though, and another one not near as full came maybe three minutes later.
Although Lynn works only about ten minutes from Northgate, she needed to drive home to the north to pick up Zephyr and then come back down again. I texted them that we were already in the area so if by chance they arrived early, we were around. Lynn got off work later than expected so I really thought they might actually be a little late. Shobhit and I killed time walking the length of Northgate Mall to the north and back. Of course, just as Lynn and Zephyr were about to arrive nearly 20 minutes earlier than expected, Shobhit had to buy a mustard colored hoodie I knew would look good on him ("I'd never wear that but it's a great color for you," I said), which cost only about $17. Shobhit and I finally got to walking quickly the length of the mall back down to the south, and Lynn, Zephyr and Lynn's younger son Nick were still waiting to be seated when we arrived at the restaurant they had suggested we meet at, Kizuki Ramen & Izakaya, which is just across the driveway around the Regal Thornton Place cinemas just south of the mall.
The food turned out to be very good, although the mushroom ramen with kale noodles I ordered was far better than the more standard vegetable ramen Shobhit ordered, which he was convinced tasted too much like it was made with peanut sauce, even though there were no peanuts whatsoever in it -- the broth was made with kelp. But, because I still liked it okay and Shobhit would not stop fixating on it, I just switched bowls with him, after I ate maybe a quarter of the truly delicious mushroom one.
We actually spent much more time with them than anticipated; it was just after 9:00 when we all finally parted ways to go home, so it had been a visit lasting maybe two hours and 45 minutes. They had suggested we wander the mall for a bit after dinner, and we were happy to, even though we had just done that for more than an hour just before we first met up with them. And between the two times I wandered the mall this evening, I got several fun photos, which was how I expanded today's photo set to 38 shots. These would include my awesome new Jurassic Park T-shirt, which Lynn offered to buy me for my birthday when we were in the ThinkGeek store. I was a little mystified by her making this offer -- she's never bought me a gift like this before -- but there was a T-shirt Nick also wanted, and they had a deal going that if you got two shirts, you got a third one for free. She got herself one too, so I suppose you could say that mine was the free one. It was super nice of her either way, and I love the shirt! (I actually wanted the other Jurassic Park themed shirt they had, with an old-school logo and the phrase Isla Nubar '93, but they didn't have a Medium size for that one, only extra small, small, or XXXL.)
When Shobhit and I were back in our car, I remarked on what a nice time I'd had this evening. I always enjoy spending time with Lynn and Zephyr, but somehow this evening seemed even more fun than usual. I really had a good time.
[posted 10:41 pm]
--Oh, wait! I almost forgot to mention that, before riding down to meet Sara, I rode quickly to QFC at Broadway Market to get another box of Clairol "Light Blonde" temporary hair dye, since Laney told me in a comment thread on Facebook that she keeps the dye in for 30-40 minutes, whereas yesterday I had merely followed the directions and left it in for only ten minutes -- leaving it looking like the color hadn't taken any hold at all. Well, this time I left it in for thirty minutes, and I think you can clearly see the difference now!
My hair does look pretty blond in the shot at the top of this entry outside with Sara, but now I'll show you the photo I took of myself in my bathroom with the T-shirt Lynn got me. I think in the bathroom light it's even clearer how well the color took today, particularly as compared to yesterday.
[edited and re-posted 10:54 pm]