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Blah Blah Blog - LiveJournal.com
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  • 03/02/18--07:01: SchadenFriday
  • We're on vacation so here's something I happened to find about an hour after I realized it would be a good week to do something different.


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  • 03/03/18--07:05: CATURDAY
  • Another vacation day, another video. Enjoy!


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  • 03/05/18--13:45: London, Paris, Everett
  • One of the best parts of a vacation if you can swing it is a day or two off before heading back to work. Garrett and I are both off today and I also took tomorrow off. Right now I'm watching the Celebrity Big Brother finale, which I'm amazed hasn't been spoiled for me, though I can probably take credit for that because I also took a Twitter vacation while we were gone. Garrett's upstairs making lunch, Sam's in his spot on the love seat, and Steve's on my lap.

    Here's my attempt to summarize the trip, starting with the first meal I made there. For those who don't know, we prefer to rent apartments and make our own breakfasts when we travel. It's nice to do that because you don't have to rush to get out in the morning.

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    Obviously there are tons more photos and videos at flickr and IG than I'll show here.



    Garrett was a little disappointed that Big Ben('s tower) was under construction while we were there, but I think it's pretty cool that we got to see it that way. One of my favorite eras in cinema is "Statue of Liberty in scaffolding."

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    One thing I never got tired of in London is the juxtaposition of old and new stuff. It's not really unusual for people who live in Europe, but having lived in the Western half of the USA, I'm used to most of what I see being relatively new. Here's one of the Tower of London entrances flanked by lots of ultra-modern buildings in the background.

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    Similar.

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    I'm so glad Garrett and I have similar feelings about museums; you should go for an hour or 90 minutes, try to see a lot, but don't try to see everything because you can't. The British Museum is amazing, though they've got a pretty cavalier attitude right now about their obligation to provide bathrooms.

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    We had a pretty mediocre fish and chips and discovered the hard way that we don't care for shrimp cocktails in the UK as much as we do in the US. But at least this pitcher of Pimm's lemonade was great.

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    We've always wanted to go to an ice bar, and didn't know London has one until Garrett happened to spot it on the map! That was a lot of fun. We got there just after a 40-minute session started, but they're smart enough to also have a comfy lobby bar to wait in for the next one.

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    We didn't eat here, I just spotted it on my to the London Eye, which Garrett didn't join me for. Best name I've seen in a while.

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    People warned me about wait times on the Eye, so I guess I was lucky to snag a spot on the 11:45 ticket at 11:42. The views were great and it was an awesome day for clouds.

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    From there, I had a very lovely walk to the Tate along the Thames.

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    I'd been wanting to see the Tate since it opened and it definitely didn't disappoint.

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    While I was at the Eye and Tate, Garrett did the Imperial War Museum, and we agreed to meet up and do the ABBA exhibition I found near the Eye. We both got caught in a surprise snowfall, which was a little tough to walk in, but a lot of fun to experience.

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    The after-work crowd in the tube station was crazy, so we killed a little time in a pub before heading back to the rental. We couldn't stay out too late, though, because we had to get up at 3:00 the next morning to head to Paris for a day trip. It's pretty great that the Channel Tunnel enables one to do that!

    Garrett found a great tour service that drove us around in a 2CV for three hours, which was a cool way to see a lot of the city in the limited amount of time we had. I took lots of Snapchat video from the backseat and exported it at the end of the day.



    Our guide and the car. There are lots of still photos from the tour if you click through.

    A great way to see Paris

    The next day back in London, we went to the Victoria and Alert Museum. Rather than choose from among all the photos I took there, here's one that ended up being one of my favorites that I've ever taken. Check the lower right corner. :)

    Funny scene at Victoria and Albert Museum

    On Friday we did a little pub crawl in Brixton, our neighborhood. It started at Meat Liquor, which we really loved and wanted to eat at, but unfortunately they lost partial power due to the storm.

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    Here's Jonny, a new friend we made at the Prince Albert.

    New friend Jonny and a magnificent mullet

    From there, we had one more at Queen's Head, our neighborhood joint, before going home to order Indian delivery food.

    For our final day, we got dressed up and went to a matinee. Everybody's Talking About Jamie is a great show.

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    A lovely dinner at Whyte & Brown.

    Cutlery plates at Whyte & BrownSnapchat-111806537

    A last look at our rental and the immediate neighborhood while we waited for our driver to the airport.

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    I missed getting a really good view of Reykjavik from my seat while I was in the bathroom on the plane.

    Iceland from the air

    Here's what the cats were up to while we were gone.




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  • 03/08/18--04:19: Welcome(d) back
  • We've sure been getting lots of attention from the boys since we got back. Normally Sam only brings down offerings in the evening, but our first full day back, he started in the morning and brought four down. I think his previous record was two in an evening.

    https://instagram.com/p/Bf8n-ZjnUY0




    And there's the grooming.

    https://instagram.com/p/BgAJaDrnZ9z


    Yesterday was my first day back at the pool, and Tuesday was a great walk at the marina.

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    It could have been a better morning for time lapses, but at least I found two nice, inconspicuous spots for the cameras. A woman walking her dog saw me fetch this one from its perch. It was funny, I walked the long way around the building hoping she'd be gone, but her dog was having too much fun.

    https://instagram.com/p/Bf_T7N2nslX


    If I knew this one would be mostly sun, I'd have put a prism lens in the case.

    https://instagram.com/p/Bf_Y_zSnZsH


    My first day back at work yesterday was a lot quieter than I thought it would be, so I was able to take advantage of an appointment that came available a week earlier than what I'd scheduled at the dentist. I've had a chip in one of my front teeth since I was 12 or so, from when I knocked it on a friend's glass coke bottle. We were watching TV in the dark, with me on the couch and him on the floor in front of it. I leaned forward to say something, not realizing he was holding his bottle up. Oops.

    The way the chip looked never bothered me, but a few years ago, it started feeling rough. I've had it buffed down a few times, knowing that I couldn't do that forever. A few weeks ago, I noticed it was growing, so I decided it was time to finally fix it. Now I've got a chip-free tooth for the first time in 30+ years. It's taking some getting used to.

    Got the 30-year-old chip in my tooth fixed because it was starting to grow.

    They matched the color quite well, but I made it black and white because I didn't notice until after I took the "before" picture that my lip was a little dry. Can't retake it now! I'll get a good color photo at some point.

    Yesterday was a lovely day for a time lapse.

    https://instagram.com/p/BgCZTw3D9-w



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  • 03/09/18--05:36: SchadenFriday









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  • 03/10/18--05:59: CATURDAY





















































  • BONUS Saturdogs







    Many thanks to:
    Animals Being Dicks
    Señor Gif
    k00l 4 k@+z
    Almost Famous Cats
    Cats, Beavers & Ducks
    Derpy Cats
    FAT CATS
    FUCKYEAHFELINES!
    CHEEZburger
    Every Day is Caturday
    Cats and Dogs
    And everyone else who happened to put a cat or dog where I ended up seeing it this week!

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  • 03/12/18--11:13: The coming flood
  • It took me a minute to figure out what was so different as I headed to the Northernmost area of my favorite Sunday spot. The salmon restoration project seems to be close to done, and the mobile offices and heavy equipment are all gone. I spent a lot of time exploring the lower parts that I'm pretty sure will be flooded soon, since they won't be accessible much longer.

    I'm glad I stopped to get video of these two, their friends flying by made some very interesting sounds.

    https://instagram.com/p/BgL9GFUj3m1




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    Setting out, I thought the skies would be too clear to get a good time lapse, but brought the cameras anyway. Turned out to be a good choice.

    https://instagram.com/p/BgMWg2GDM0M


    Steve and Sam say hi.

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  • 03/13/18--16:45: Marina sky
  • With the time change, much of my walk this morning was spent in the dark. The sunrise came quickly at the end and was really beautiful for a few minutes. Just enough time to play around with some panoramas and a new favorite technique I just came up with, where I save a photo (cropped if necessary), save a flipped version, then use the layout function in Instagram to stitch the two together. Here's today's example of that.

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    It's a little odd to me that Instagram, which is certainly the most popular photo-sharing app, doesn't have an easy way to share panoramas and doesn't support 360-degree photos at all. It's possible using other programs and sites to slice up panoramas into a set of photos so you can scroll across them in an IG post, but I don't think there's one you can use on the phone for that yet. Here's what I do sometimes when I feel like sharing a panorama right away.

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    That's the layout function again with the panorama in the center and two shots of the pavement.

    Here's the rest of the lovely morning.

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    It's not really practical to try to catch the sunrise in a time lapse at the walk site right now, but I got a nice one once I got home. It was a lot longer than this, but I like to keep them to a minute or less because that's the Instagram limit. I could have shown the whole thing faster, but it was a bit too fast.

    https://instagram.com/p/BgRuopUDbQ7



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  • 03/16/18--09:24: SchadenFriday
  • Bit of a slow week. It happens.




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  • 03/17/18--06:19: CATURDAY
















































  • BONUS Saturdogs








    Many thanks to:
    Animals Being Dicks
    Señor Gif
    k00l 4 k@+z
    Almost Famous Cats
    Cats, Beavers & Ducks
    Derpy Cats
    FAT CATS
    FUCKYEAHFELINES!
    CHEEZburger
    Every Day is Caturday
    Cats and Dogs
    And everyone else who happened to put a cat or dog where I ended up seeing it this week!

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  • 03/23/18--10:50: SchadenFriday












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  • 03/24/18--07:30: CATURDAY



































  • BONUS Saturdogs












    Many thanks to:
    Animals Being Dicks
    Señor Gif
    k00l 4 k@+z
    Almost Famous Cats
    Cats, Beavers & Ducks
    Derpy Cats
    FAT CATS
    FUCKYEAHFELINES!
    CHEEZburger
    Every Day is Caturday
    Cats and Dogs
    And everyone else who happened to put a cat or dog where I ended up seeing it this week!

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  • 03/25/18--12:58: Revisiting
  • I've been going to the Island pretty consistently on Sundays but was in the mood for Japanese Gulch today. I need to go there more. I got out of the habit once I started the time lapses, but there are a couple of good spots there to leave a camera.

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    https://instagram.com/p/BgwQsginSwa


    https://instagram.com/p/BgwSdpOHuhT


    And here's a new shirt that came this week. My friend Mike has a Spreadshirt shop that came up in FB memories recently, so I grabbed it. My next tattoo is going to be a squid, so I'm kind of on a squid kick.

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  • 03/30/18--08:46: SchadenFriday




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  • 03/31/18--07:40: CATURDAY










































  • BONUS Saturdogs








    Many thanks to:
    Animals Being Dicks
    Señor Gif
    k00l 4 k@+z
    Almost Famous Cats
    Cats, Beavers & Ducks
    Derpy Cats
    FAT CATS
    FUCKYEAHFELINES!
    CHEEZburger
    Every Day is Caturday
    Cats and Dogs
    And everyone else who happened to put a cat or dog where I ended up seeing it this week!

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  • 03/31/18--10:39: Tidbits
  • I walked a lot this week because the pool was closed for maintenance. Thankfully my sore foot's finally getting better after a couple of weeks. Of course it started feeling better the day before the doctor appointment I scheduled about it. Isn't that always the way?

    Between the darkness and the rain, there wasn't tons to see, though.



    I haven't looked in my photo album to confirm, but it seems like there's a lot more paint on this now. I love the colors.

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    That old post-walk view at the dog park. This will get much greener in the next few months.

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    Over by the river, there's a new trail behind the new houses. I might use it in the future if it eventually goes around the entire perimeter, but it won't be worth it otherwise. I don't really like feeling I'm on display while walking.

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    Looks like someone had a nice time at the marina the night before I was there.

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    I hoped to get this shot right as a ripple formed from a raindrop, but had no luck. Still liked the way it looked without it.

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    Our vertical garden has reached new heights and lengths. I already need to add more hooks and stretch it out more. That's a cluster of ionanthas hanging off the vine hook. I'm keeping it in the kitchen because plants in there do so much better than the ones in my room.

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    The floor in there is as popular as ever for synchronized sleeping.

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  • 04/06/18--05:15: SchadenFriday











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  • 04/07/18--05:48: CATURDAY






































  • BONUS Saturdogs





    Many thanks to:
    Animals Being Dicks
    Señor Gif
    k00l 4 k@+z
    Almost Famous Cats
    Cats, Beavers & Ducks
    Derpy Cats
    FAT CATS
    FUCKYEAHFELINES!
    CHEEZburger
    Every Day is Caturday
    Cats and Dogs
    And everyone else who happened to put a cat or dog where I ended up seeing it this week!

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  • 04/07/18--16:03: The end and the beginning
  • After 18 months of sessions, we finally finished my sleeve back in February. It was too swollen and bloody that day, though, so I didn't get good pictures with Jimmy until I went back yesterday.

    My amazing sleeve by Jimmy Walters

    I went back yesterday to start on the other arm, but that didn't end up happening. He had some very valid concerns about my concept and its placement, and there definitely wasn't time to design the alternative. Luckily, we had other ideas brewing. Here's the outcome from first session for my neon '80s fantasy back piece!

    We started my backpiece

    I always imagined I'd have both arms completely covered before starting on my back. Being flexible and spontaneous really paid off, I love what we've done so far.

    EDIT:
    I'm susceptible to very weird earworms. Because I have a tattoo with keytars, this is now stuck in my head.


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  • 04/08/18--13:18: Catchemups
  • Here's what I got up to last week. I've been super busy and the next work week will be even busier. I'll consider it an opportunity to shine.

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    Easter and April Fool's Day (the same day this year) were lovely. As is often the case, I did a nice loop around the future salmon habitat at Langus.

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    https://instagram.com/p/BhCOsp9HYhC

    https://instagram.com/p/BhCN3dPHpFQ


    Easter dinner was great, though I will say Triple Yahtzee is one of the more boring game choices we've made.

    Hi Bella

    https://instagram.com/p/BhCpgwRnlF5


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    I made sure to swim three times (Monday/Wednesday/Friday) since I'll have at least a week off because of the new tattoo. I couldn't make it out Tuesday so that ended up being a yoga day. Surprisingly, there was time Thursday for a major walk, so I went out to Langus again.

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    https://instagram.com/p/BhMhhC-n4Hg



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  • 04/10/18--14:53: Swamp Lantern Festival.
  • Had a very lovely time with lisaloopner on Saturday at the Swamp Lantern Festival put on by the Northwest Stream Center. I had no idea there was such a cool wetland so close to where we used to live in South Everett!

    https://instagram.com/p/BhRyHykHU6c




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    yay

    We were running a bit early for lunch, so I also drove us over to Silver Lake, which I used to walk around all the time.

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  • 04/11/18--16:27: Blow me down
  • When I went to Langus last week, I spotted a small sign on an onramp mentioning it'd be closed Sunday, so I searched for events in town when I got home. It was the half marathon. I figured I'd stay very far away from it, and chose Japanese Gulch instead. That turned out to be a good decision, as I ended up finding some previously-inaccessible passages to large areas I'd never seen before. Thankfully I had my new multitool I bought to carry in my hydration pack; the pliers were very handy for grabbing thorny vines to snap them and move them out of my way.

    https://instagram.com/p/BhUJvT2HKns






    I feel bad for the marathon runners and walkers, the wind was pretty intense. It was nice to be mostly shielded from it in the woods.

    https://instagram.com/p/BhT-EoHHKxg


    I was able to see water from a spot on the Eastern slope that I hadn't seen it from before.

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    And I found my way back to this spot, which I'd only seen once or twice before.

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    The ballfields up top and the newest warehouse building.

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    What a crowd.

    https://instagram.com/p/BhUJdVtHeJb


    Another abandoned car, bringing the total I know about in the gulch to two.

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    Had to mute this one as it was loud enough that I probably would have really annoyed anyone who played it unsuspecting. At first I thought I was walking toward a large HVAC system but realized what it really was in time to get my phone ready.

    https://instagram.com/p/BhUBq14Hiar


    I didn't want to take the same way back down that I took up because of the mud, but ended up choosing a path that was way worse. I slipped in the mud a lot, but it was actually wet grass that made me fall into the mud. I thought I wasn't hurt at all, but three days later my right arm is sore from catching myself. It's much better than it was Monday, but still tender.

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    Passersby have ruined my shots before, but this is the first time the wind did it.

    https://instagram.com/p/BhUYhJoHEVM



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  • 04/13/18--09:19: SchadenFriday












  • 0 0
  • 04/14/18--05:34: CATURDAY






















































  • BONUS Saturdogs










    Many thanks to:
    Animals Being Dicks
    Señor Gif
    k00l 4 k@+z
    Almost Famous Cats
    Cats, Beavers & Ducks
    Derpy Cats
    FAT CATS
    FUCKYEAHFELINES!
    CHEEZburger
    Every Day is Caturday
    Cats and Dogs
    And everyone else who happened to put a cat or dog where I ended up seeing it this week!

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  • 04/14/18--07:27: More change than I realized
  • It's been a while since I was quite as shocked as I was yesterday. After approaching the loop at Edgewater beach from the opposite of my normal direction so I could set up a time lapse, I left the way I normally enter so I wouldn't appear in it. A lot of work is being done down there to move the ferry terminal, but I had no idea that one of my favorite buildings in the region was coming down.

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    It makes total sense, though. If that building had remained, the road to the new ferry terminal would wrap around it. Now the road can go behind whatever new stuff they build. Here's how it looked back in August.

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    Usually at some point after a walk, I transfer all the photos over to flickr, including the Instagram crops. I didn't think to do that before buying a new phone yesterday, so I only have the originals from my SD card. One exception, though. My original version of this was rotated, but I realized this flip would be so much better so I did it in the evening.

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    I wish there was an easy way with a phone camera to approximate the eye's focus. The driftwood was framed so perfectly by the vines when I looked at it, but I couldn't really show what I saw.

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    It was a lovely morning for a time lapse, for sure.

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    Suddenly I like scenic self portraits taken using a voice command.

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    I thought I saw a large seal, but it turned out it was a dog swimming much further out than I've ever seen before. Dog owners constantly surprise me.

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    The original plan was to walk up via the gulch's interpretive trail so I could approach the time lapse camera from behind, but I was just a bit from the top when I encountered a trail that was muddy enough to make me turn back. It was still nice to be in the woods. I also couldn't follow the railroad tracks up because a railroad employee was sitting nearby in a truck.

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    I really wish my mom would have lived to see Everett and Mukilteo. Weeping willows were here favorite tree (which is why I have a tattoo of one) and there are some really stunning ones here.

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    It's always nice when the flowers start appearing.

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    It's so fun when things like trains show up in time lapses. I think I need to use this spot frequently.

    https://instagram.com/p/BhhAOT1gOVF


    Speaking of flowers, there were lots of nice ones Thursday at the marina.

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    Steve says hi.

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