Sunday, April 04, 2010

Hello Goodbye

Saturday afternoon. Just over a week since leaving home. Already it feels like a lifetime.

Sitting in Sea-Tac Airport, Seattle, waiting for a flight to Sacramento. We arrived in the rain and we are leaving in the rain. After the dry, clear sunshine of Denver, we flew in yesterday to gale force winds and ice-edged rain driving in off the Pacific.

This town, so like Glasgow - the light, the rain, the seven hills - was alive with fancy-dress kids attending a Japanese anime convention, lending already spaced brains an even more surreal perspective on the world.

Having dropped our bags off at the Renaissance Hotel, we fought against the wind and the rain, mid-afternoon, to the Pike Street fish market where we found my favourite chowder joint - a tiny café squeezed into a corner of the market, where they serve the most wonderful chowders. Sadly they were out of my favourite smoked salmon, and I had to do with southern chicken and corn instead. Large cups of thick, warming, comforting soup.

Neither La Patronne nor I could face another restaurant last night, so while at the market we found a great cheese stall, bought a selection of nice cheeses, some herb crackers, then went in search of a screw-top bottle of wine - can’t carry a corkscrew with us on our flights.

So it was cheese and wine in the room before collapsing amongst the pillows of the king-sized bed for an early, early night.

Of course, I was awake at 5.30am, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, and with a morning to kill before my signing event at the Seattle Mystery Bookshop. I found a US channel showing the Man U/Chelsea game, which passed a couple of hours before breakfast, then another battle with the elements and the hills to find the bookstore, just off Pioneer Square.

Warmly welcomed as always by Bill and Fran, I signed stock for the shop, and books for customers - one of whom had dropped in looking specifically for a book set in Paris, to get the atmosphere of the city before heading off for a spring holiday. He bought “Extraordinary People” (now renamed “Dry Bones), and I recommended that he make a tour of the catacombs, which he would read about in the book. Before I left I made my own contribution to the bookstore’s blog, which you can read here.

Then we ate in an Italian restaurant, and spent the afternoon feeling sick, and responding to excited e-mails from Susie in Sacramento who was getting orgasmic over an iPad delivery.

The airport has suddenly come alive with people in open sandals and shorts, and winter white skin. God knows where they’ve come from, or where they’re going. It’s the holidays!! Aaaargh!!!

Happy Easter.

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