Ghosts of Grunge


We make a brief stop at Kurt Cobain’s old house and peek through the bushes from an adjacent park but the windows are dark and we see no sign of Courtney Love or Dave Grohl.

When we get back in the car, the GPS goes on the fritz. We argue about whether or not Cobain’s ghost is haunting us. I drive in expanding circles for 45 minutes before we reach Seattle’s scenic downtown by accident.

The roads are steeper here than in Vancouver. It’s not hard to drive on but it feels like it should be. I park in a lot at the bottom of the market and we slowly climb back uphill.

The marketplace is full of ancient stores bursting with old books, records, and knick-knacks.  This is our promised land.

We both buy an armful of books and some tapes. Chantelle buys a book of Jim Morrison’s poetry with a fake Morrison signature on the inside. Outside the market, we visit the original Starbucks. We don’t see Kelsey Grammer but a gang of old men are playing dominoes at a few tables that speak for the majority of the sitting space. We don’t sit, but the barista, a young-ish guy about our age makes small talk, similar to the barista in Vancouver who made similar small talk.  They know we’re not locals and question us.  It’s interesting that we’re the ones exploring and yet people are questioning us.

Kids are lining up at a venue next door to see Lykke Li.

We’re about to head back to the hotel, when a homeless man approaches. He looks like a leathery Axel Rose.

Can you spare $5.65, for a sandwich?” Axel says.

I say no, but Chantelle offers all the change in her pocket, about $3.

Neither of us are rich, but its very good karma, I believe.

The man rolls his eyes, and takes the donation.

Thanks, I guess.

He says, and stumps off.

We spend a few minutes looking through a video store but turn up empty handed.  Around the corner, we meet the rude homeless man.  He’s making a purchase of a small tinfoil ball in the alleyway.

He doesn’t even acknowledge us.

Featured Image sourced on Flickr.


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