Coming to you from the center of the universe.
Since the move, I’ve spent quite a few weekends in downtown and Seattle Center. I thought I’d branch out this weekend and see what else my new city has to offer.
I caught a bus to the Fremont neighborhood so I could, for all intents and purposes, cross the final item off my Seattle Bucket List: see the Fremont Troll.
I’ve seen so many photos of the Fremont Troll, I wasn’t especially wowed or blown away in the moment. I was impressed, sure. But it was pretty much what I’d expected, only with a bit more graffiti than I’d counted on. In any event, it was a cool “Seattle moment” and a nice way to finish up my meager Seattle Bucket List. Time to find some new adventures.
I wasn’t feeling well and headed home for a bit to recharge; it’s a shame, too, because Fremont is home to quite a few quirky attractions that I would have loved to check out. But I’ll be back before long.
Feeling refreshed a few hours later, I checked out Golden Gardens Park in the Ballard neighborhood. The plan had been to grab dinner and take it out to the park, where I would enjoy a late summer sunset. I left a little too late to pick up dinner, so I at least made sure to catch the final few moments of a picturesque sunset; I have no doubt that these sights will be few and far between as soon as next month.
I’d never heard of Golden Gardens Park until today, so it was cool to relax on one of Seattle’s few “beaches,” such as they are. It felt like all of Seattle was squished onto the small strip of sand that I stumbled upon. Given more time, I would love to hang out and explore the park a bit more.
Following the sunset, it was time to finally hit up the restaurant that had come so highly recommended by so many friends: Paseo.
The Yelp scores for each of the two Paseo locations are legendary: One has a 4.5-star average with more than 1,700 reviews, and the other has a the same average with nearly 400 reviews. Restaurants with that kind of consensus are about as rare as a Timbers fan in Seattle, so I knew I was in for a treat.
But I had no idea. I wasn’t ready for this. Even with the hype, I was caught completely by surprise. The pork sandwich I tried was — and I know this sounds crazy — transcendent. Few foods have ever lifted my spirits as much as that sandwich. And, lest we forget, I’m talking about a sandwich. It’s not a lavish meal in an elegant restaurant; it’s a grilled pork sandwich from a Caribbean-themed walk-up.
I would call it the best sandwich I’ve ever eaten, but I don’t even know what number two would be. The pork was tender and moist; the caramelized onions carried a subtle smokey flavor; and the jalapenos added a spicy kick to round out the variety of tastes. Had I known about Paseo before moving, I may well have angled my living situation so that I was within walking distance. I don’t regret much in life, but not living closer to Paseo certainly makes the list.
That ended a day of random adventures. Between the sunset and the sandwich, I can think of no better way to end the day.