Saturday, February 14, 2009

Great time with the Bellinghamsters

I ventured to the northern fringe of Pugetopolis on Friday the 13th for a reading at Village Books in Bellingham's Fairhaven District, which is one of the best historic neighborhoods in the region. The drive was a slow-moving advertisement for staying close to home. When the freeway's clear, you can do Seattle to Bellingham in about an hour and fifteen minutes. I left Seattle a little after 3pm with a couple of stops (gas, bank) and pulled into Bellingham at 6pm. I-5 was ugly to Marysville, and traffic didn't really let up until just past Burlington. The true Pugetopolitan experience!

Had a quick bite to eat at the Colophon Cafe adjacent to the bookstore's  downstairs reading area. It was recommended to me by "Weekday" producer Katy Sewall of KUOW,  who attended Western Washington University. She commended the soups and, in true blogger style, let me describe briefly what I ate. The soup of the day was tomato & cheddar cheese soup, and it was excellent. I tried it because it reminded me of a dish I grew up with called "rinktum ditty," which was essentially Campbell's tomato soup with melted Tillamook cheese in it, poured over a bed of Saltine crackers. Kind of a poor-man's Mac & Cheese. The Colophon's soup was much better, but close enough to the comfort food of memory to fortify me nicely for the reading.

Which went well. A nice crowd (I counted about 50 people). I'd received a good write-up by Rich Donnelly in Cascadia Weekly, the local alt paper, previewing the reading (not available as a link, unfortunately). I enjoyed myself and as usual, the Q&A was lively and went long.  I read the chapter called "Sighting the Great American Peckerwood" about Bill Gates, intelligent design and Discovery Institute in honor of  Darwin's birthday this week. My one regret: I had no time to spend at Village Books but plan to get back up soon and spend some of my Obama stimulus money.

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