Thursday, July 30, 2009

Green Scene: Gas Works Park

There is an interesting dichotomy that plays out at the historic Gas Works Park. On the one hand you'll find an endless field of green hills and valleys with the shores of beautiful Lake Union at its base. And if that weren't enough, from atop of those hills is a, be still my beating heart, view of downtown Seattle with Space Needle serving as it's mascot.

At Gas Works Park, families gather for picnics, while some folks come solo to read a book or strum a guitar. On this day, there was a serious game of Catch the Flag going on and under a picnic area we found Latin dancers swaying their hips at lightning speed to spicy music emanating from an old boombox.

On the other hand, the park is in perfect harmony with relics from the old Seattle Gas Light Company. These relics are perfectly aged to a brick red, rust patina -- a color that only time can create. Yes I know, an old gas company? Sounds like a disaster waiting to happen and yet people flock here year round. Several years ago I vacationed in Belize where I toured ancient Mayan ruins -- somehow these old clunky structures remind me of that trip. This site, though not nearly as ancient as the ruins in Belize, still stand as proof of what the world used to look like some decades ago. My 5-year old asked me if there were ghost here and of course I said no. However, secretly I believe there are. How can there not be old souls showing up every morning to the sound of a whistle for the first shift to begin. With tin lunchboxes in hand, dark denim coveralls and work boots. Don't you see it?

Then, just a few yards away we find a Stand Up Paddle Board Race in progress. Paddle Boarding is a relatively new sport but done in full view of the great tanks that guard Gas Works Park make it seem that much more modern. By the way, I'm trying to convince my husband to do this since he is a fan of all things related to surfing.

It certainly has been a challenge to adapt to the heat in Seattle, but when you see what clear blue skies and warm weather brings out, one can't help but marvel in all it's glory.

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