Seattle Neighborhood: Fremont

Freaky Fremont was looking a whole lot more mainstream on a recent visit.  While it was once THE place to live if you favored tie-dye, nude bike riding during the Solstice and feasting on organic granola, you now had better make some major bucks to call this your home and enjoy the trendy cafes, boutiques and bars.  Fremont is still a cool place no doubt but definitely more trendy and sophisticated than in the past.


After a quick Metro ride from our Lower Queen Anne hood, I wandered Fremont to check out all it has to offer in an urban community.  We don’t get up here often but did recently enjoy The Barrel Thief with friends for an Ardbeg whiskey tasting.  Right up the street, our friends told us there was a great place to satisfy our foot massage yearnings.  Two Smiling Feet does a 60 minute foot massage for $35 which we plan to check out soon.  One of the experiences I miss most from living in China is our weekly foot massage date.  Damn that was habit-forming!  I look forward to seeing if Two Smiling Feet delivers a true Chinese foot massage that makes me cry with pain but leaves me smiling with happy feet.

Fremont does has a movie theater, Century at Pacific Commons, as well as Ophelia’s Books where you can get a .50 book bargain from the outside rack or wander the many titles inside while the shop cat prowls the book stacks.  I never leave there without at least a bag full of “must read” used books.  Next door to Ophelia’s is Jive Time Used Record Store where Thom likes to browse to feed his vinyl habit.

Of course, there are bakeries, cool cafes, gelato places and more to feed your appetite for anything you could want to eat plus a downtown PCC Market for a wide selection of groceries.  The shopping is good too with an always packed Warby Parker store (trendy and inexpensive glasses) and boutiques selling $200+ upscale clothes as well as some vintage bargain places.  A great walking neighborhood with a concentrated few blocks of everything you could want and need, you can also take advantage of a gorgeous river trail that is shaded and lovely to stroll on a sunny Seattle day.

Fremont is also known for their Solstice Parade in June where a Mardi-Gras style parade proceeds with Solstice Cyclists stripping down and painting their bodies to lead the merriment.  I’ve never been to the parade but look forward to experiencing it soon.  Their Sunday Farmer’s Market is also top notch and showcases lots of vintage clothing, accessories and kitschy stuff along with food trucks/stalls galore.  Not a “farmer’s” market with produce but more a place to shop and eat that is very dog friendly.  All in all, Fremont would be a good place to call home if you want to be outside the Seattle downtown core but close enough for a quick commute.

Seattle Sunshine

The sun shone brightly on Friday as all of Seattle rushed outside in anticipation of the first warm sunny weekend this year.  Then, the phone rang and I heard my sister telling me that mom was going into the ER and then a short time later, emergency surgery.  Pause.V__8ECE [77531]

Shaken and waiting to hear the outcome of the surgery, I needed Happy Hour.  Bad.  We sat outside in Belltown at Bell and Whete and tried to enjoy nibbles while I nursed a stiff Old Fashioned.  One moment of levity came when the manager, whom I had seen flitting around, came by our table and reached for our credit card and bill to cash us out.  Thom, who hadn’t seen him before, immediately jerked it out of his hand and asked who the hell he was, distrustful New Yorker that he is and always will be.  The manager just laughed and introduced himself and I vouched for him.  Oh Thom!

After hearing that mom came through with flying colors and was already charming the nursing staff, we were able to enjoy a perfect Saturday in Seattle.  After a lazy morning, we took off downtown to the waterfront to get in our 10,000+ steps on our FitBits.  Sitting in my happy place, Sculpture Park, high above the water, we decided to hit the ferry and take it for a ride to Bainbridge Island just for the heck of it.  What fun for only $16 for both tickets!  With the chllly breeze blowing us around, we enjoyed the company of a couple of parrots on their way back home after seeing the vet and took in the view from the ferry we see every day from our window crossing Elliott Bay.

Sunday morning means volunteering at Shared Breakfast where my son joined us for the first time, after missing last week when he overslept.  After a few hours serving 275+ folks in need a hot breakfast, he retired for a nap and we took off to enjoy the Fremont Street Market.  A great mix of food, arts & crafts and unique junk finds, we could have bought too much but we abstained and decided to travel light.  Good thing we did because we just kept on walking the path by the canal, ending up several miles later in Ballard.

Now, we’re watching the Mets and I’m listening to explicit language I haven’t heard since the World Series.  Play ball!  Listen up Mets–please start winning so Thom doesn’t have a heart attack.  Ahhh Spring Time in the George household.  F*@king Mets, hit the f&%cking ball!  Oh Thom…watch that NY mouth of yours and take a sedative.  The season has just begun.

Melinda [77532]
Enjoying the sunshine by the canal on the trail from Fremont to Ballard