Variable rate parking in Seattle

Seattle is launching market-based pricing for parking. This is possible now that they've installed those curbside machines that you pay to print out a parking slip for your curbside window (as opposed to the old-school parking meters for each space that took quarters). The machine adjusts pricing based on time of day and could conceivably other factors like geography, parking utilization, weather, local events, etc.

Consumers probably won't enjoy having to pay more for parking at certain times, but from an economic and environmental standpoint this makes all sorts of sense. Curbside parking has always been underpriced, overdemanded, and undersupplied. Anyone versed in microeconomics would predict higher pricing as a more optimal scenario in these cases. Variable pricing of tolls in Singapore and London has been one of the only successful means of reducing traffic there.

Over the holidays, I drove into NYC once, and at many curbs they've now installed these parking machines in the place of parking meters. I wouldn't be surprised to see variable parking pricing arrive in NYC in the next two years.

The article mentions two logical extensions of this technology, and which of the two is positive depends on your perspective:

During an interview in Seattle's Central District, Streetline rep Paul Toliver pulled out his iPad and tapped his map of Hollywood. Red and green showed filled and open spots. Parking officers can see exact spots where cars are sitting overtime, and head out to write tickets. The firm just announced an iPhone app that can send real-time price and space updates to motorists.

Teachstreet launches

Big congratulations to my friend Dave and his team for launching Teachstreet yesterday morning. Teachstreet is a service that connects people who want to learn something with local teachers. In its beta incarnation, the site lists over 25,000 classes in Seattle.

I worked briefly for Dave at Amazon, and he was my roommate here in Santa Monica my first year in LA when he was helping his friends with JibJab. Everyone knows him as, first and foremost, one of the all around good guys. He has a very genuine enthusiasm and honesty that is rare in the corporate world. It's a combination of qualities more common in entrepreneurs, so it's only fitting that he's now launched his own company. I'll bet anything that his team and colleagues love working with him.

It's good to see a new generation of startup companies spawning out of the alumni network.

Bottom of the 9th

Okay, I'm back from a busy but enjoyable wedding weekend in Seattle (mostly Whidbey Island) and entering my final week in NYC. I do need a post at some point on just the weddings I've attended this year. By the end of October, I will have attended 8 out of 11 weddings, a record for me (I'm not the only one who climbed a wedding peak this summer). I had hoped to see many people in Seattle, but too much of travel is consumed by long security lines at airports these days (I'd been told to get to the airport three hours early for domestic flights, but the security lines turned out to be about the same as they were prior to the whole elemental profiling campaign against liquids). I will have to return to Seattle again soon, though. The summer weather there is perfectly neutral, such that you don't feel hot or cold, just an equilibrium between skin and air.

I made one concession to my culinary memory and stopped at Salumi for a sandwich. Salumi, an Italian Salumeria exported to the Pacific Northwest, is the creation of Armandino Batali, Mario Batali's father. It's my favorite Seattle restaurant, and they've begun shipping meats online through their website.

Things may go dark here for a bit as I'm canceling cable and Internet service in the next day or two, though I will try to siphon an hour or so of Internet oxygen through my neighbor's Linksys wireless router from time to time. But most of my time will be spent packing and walking the streets of New York, trying to swallow the anguish of leaving this, the city of my heart.

One of the things that will serve as a weekly rebuke of my departure for the West coast will be the weekly arrival of The New Yorker and the NY Times. So many sections of The New Yorker come to life when you actually live in the city, from Tables for Two and every other section of Goings on About Town to Hilton Als's and Anthony Lane's reviews of local theater and cinema. Before I lived in NYC, I just ignored Goings on About Town. Now that I've lived here, I will peruse it each week from afar and weep at the cultural riches just out of reach. Why would I torture myself thus? I don't know, but I believe Odysseus would empathize. Odysseus had his men stuff their ears with beeswax and tie him to the mast of his ship when sailing past the Sirens so he could hear their irresistible song but not chase after it.

Speaking of The New Yorker, this week's issue is a good one, including Malcolm Gladwell again on the silliness of having companies supply health insurance and pensions, a system that cripples companies when their dependency ratios soar; George Saunders helping Iran to find some alternatives to popular English phrases that have infected its language; and James Surowiecki on the dubious ethics of management buyouts.

Okay, back to boxing and taping.

Bon voyage, Rob

Congratulations to an old colleague of mine who has left Amazon to return to NY (very odd for me to read this on the front page of on my Amazon Plog). Rob was an early addition to the DVD & Video team, and I had a lot of fun working with him and chatting about movies. Perhaps we'll pass each other somewhere over the Midwest as he comes East and I head West.

These are a few of his favorite things. We have very similar tastes.

Location is everything?

My apartment is the size of Bill's kitchen. I state it that way because it's a compliment to my apartment. Looking out his window, I see, no joke, a hummingbird sucking nectar from a flower on one of the bushes, bathed in the golden glow of sunrise. It's as if I died and woke up in heaven, or perhaps my friends sedated me yesterday and put me into a rehab clinic in Southern California. Any minute now a fat nurse will be in to give me an enema.
This is the first clean air I've breathed since...I can't even remember anymore. I'm also reminded that I really miss DirecTV.
Okay, off to the U.S. mecca of golf.

Phenomenon of the plastic smile

Eric forwarded me this interesting article from the Seattle Times about the "phenomenon of the plastic smile," or the "Seattle Freeze." That is, Seattle-ites being extremely friendly in passing situations but stingy with genuine friendship and intimacy. After reading it, I scanned my seven years in Seattle to see if I agreed. My conclusion was that I experienced a very mild case of the Seattle Freeze. Relative to a place like New York City or Chicago, the two places I lived around my Seattle years, Seattle natives can seem reserved. But I've always done plenty of things on my own, also, so who knows where the blame lies. I was fortunate to work at a company with hundreds of out-of-town imports, all around the same age group, all new to the city. We made our own little social circles.

The idea that New Yorkers are unfriendly is a myth, though. In my half year here, I've found most New Yorkers to be really friendly, if not in passing situations, then in more intimate social settings. Sure, the person sitting across from you in the subway may be lost in his or her iPod and paperback, but that may just be claustrophobia. There are a lot of freakin' people crammed on this island, and you have to form a social bubble just to maintain some personal space for a few hours each day. But people are socially voracious here, especially relative to folks in the Pacific Northwest. Meet someone out and chances are you'll have traded cell phone #'s and e-mails by evenings end, and next weekend you'll have one more option for a weekend out. People are always looking for people to hang out with, perhaps because we all live in shoebox-sized apartments. The more the merrier is the general philosophy in NYC, and so Evites are passed around like so many phone numbers and photos out of Paris Hilton's Sidekick.

There's more open space in the Pacific Northwest, less intense pressure to be out and about in the scene. It's part of the laid-back feel out there. I enjoy both styles of living, but the ideal would be perhaps to have a house in Seattle and a penthouse in Manhattan. And a private jet to hop back and forth between the two cities.

Hunter Thompson commits suicide

Hunter Thompson shot himself Sunday night

The Seattlest, the latest in city blogs descended from The Gothamist

This link's for my old Seattle pals

The New Yorker on The Gates

"“The Gates” succeeds precisely by being, on the whole, a big nothing. Comprehended at a glance, it lets us get right down to being crazy about ourselves, in a bubble of participatory narcissism that it will be pitiable to have missed." (As an aside, my favorite critique of The Gates was Stephen Colbert's from The Daily Show (Quicktime))

More cool downloads from Salon's Audiofile: MP3s from Return to N.Y. by AK-Momo

Denali Fitness

Sang quit his job in Seattle to open a gym with Dave C. Denali Fitness (logo by the lovely and talented Juli) replaces the old Madison Park Sound Mind & Body. Good to see his own thing, and even better that it's something he'll enjoy. I believe that most people have a cap to how happy they can be, some internal equalization that stabilizes our state of mind over time, but the floor to our unhappiness is much lower than the cap to our happiness is high.

If you're in the neighborhood, drop in at Denali and work out on cardio machines fitted with televisions.

Meanwhile, I'm waiting for Denali to open a New York City branch. With temperatures dropping below 10 degrees, and since I feel like I gained seventy-five pounds over holiday break, I've begun researching Manhattan gyms. It's not a pretty picture. Prices are as high as my gut is voluminous. I haven't been able to pull the trigger in the face of crazy initiation fees and monthly dues, required year-long commitments, all for rather middle-of-the-road facilities. The best NY gyms charge exorbitant fees. The backup plan is lots of push-ups, sit-ups, and riding on my bike trainer while listening to "You're The Best" by Joe Esposito on my iPod.

Deck the Hall with trendy alternative bands

Last Thursday, Eric and Christina took me to The End's Deck the Hall Ball, a concert sponsored by Seattle's 107.7 and held at Key Arena. The lineup read like a list of bands that would appear on the soundtrack of The O.C., or Zach Braff's Garden State followup soundtrack. The bands playing at the concert, in order of appearance (ascending order of popularity, I suspect), were the following:

Snow Patrol


The Shins

The Killers

Franz Ferdinand

Modest Mouse

Here's a set list for each band, along with iTunes links to each song

Each band was limited to about 40 minutes, which was fine for many of the bands who only had one CD or about 40 minutes worth of material anyhow. Christina and I missed all except the last two songs by Snow Patrol. We were downtown and planned to take the monorail over to Seattle Center, only to discover it wasn't running. Unlike NYC, there is no subway system, and the one bus that could have taken us there waited while we sprinted nearly two blocks to catch it, and then it shut its doors and left us in the dust just as we reached it.

Keane turned out to be three people. A lead singer, a keyboardist, and a drummer. No bass?! Not on this night, though the keyboardist had what appeared to be a Mac laptop sitting next to him, its screen flipped open and illuminated. Maybe the bass player was being piped in via some audio chat software. They didn't seem like rock stars, the lead singer being as friendly as he was. Some pretty emo-Britpop or whatever it's called, though the lead singers vocals were pumped out at too high a level.

The Shins sounded great.

The Killers are a blast to watch live. They've embraced their inner rock star, and "Somebody Told Me" is a great single. Sure, it all sounds vaguely reminiscent of stuff from The Cure, New Order, and a dozen other bands, but if we held every band to the standard of an original sound, we'd all be curmedgeonly rockists.

Franz Ferdinand look like a bunch of guys who used to get beat up in high school, except they all wear hip suits with skinny ties, so at least they were hip ahead of their time. Really catchy guitar riffs. I'm terrible with musical genres. Someone told me they qualify as post-pop. I have no idea what that means, but I picture a pop lying in bed, smoking a cigarette.

Modest Mouse was extremely subdued. Between the first several songs, not a word was uttered. Sasquatch, the Seattle Sonics mascot, joined the band for one song to play the tambourine. Or perhaps I'd just inhaled too much secondhand pot. A large flock of people left halfway through their set, either out of exhaustion or boredom, or both.

Timing is everything

I've been spending my time between the West Coast and New York serendipitously. I left NYC during the RNC and enjoyed some gorgeous sunshine driving from Seattle down the West coast to Los Angeles. Then I landed back in NYC in time for the first blushes of autumn. Now I've landed back in Seattle just as tropical depression Jeanne wreaks its final fury on NYC before sailing off into the Atlantic
I found it a strange coincidence that this Gothamist post was titled "You Are Not Living In Seattle". As if addressed to me. Yes, I don't live in Seattle anymore, but for a few days, I can pretend as if I still do. And yes, Seattle has less avg. annual rainfall than NYC.

Greenlake half marathon

I ran my first half marathon yesterday: just over four laps around Greenlake, or just over 13 miles. What an ordeal.
Dave ran the first lap with me, and all was well. Partway through my second lap, I had a gastrointestinal emergency and ran my fastest mile split in racing to a public bathroom. One stall, no door. Lovely.
Having overcome that, my third lap was shaky. My knees felt really stiff and sore, and my left ankle started to sting. Before my fourth lap, I stopped at my car to eat a Clif Shot and pick up my iPod. The sun had set by the time I set off for the final lap, and I started to shiver. I had also forgotten to bandage/apply Vaseline to my nipples and between my legs (yes, these are the gory details familiar to long-distance runners but not yet second nature to me). There was a traffic jam of pain signals from all around my body up my spine that last lap.
I staggered in, bowed by not beaten. After a bit of stretching, I limped over to a supermarket and stocked up on Gatorade and some Icy Hot bandages, one for each knee.
My limiting factor remains my knees, and to a certain extent my ankles. The lungs feel fine, though I'm still a tortoise. I'll miss Greenlake and its outer path of dirt and gravel. It's softer than pavement, and for the most part it's level. If they'd only install some more lights around the perimeter it could be a round-the-clock training route.

Dissenting opinions on the Koolhaas library

Derek forwarded me this article from Project for Public Spaces that offers a dissenting opinion on the Koolhaas library in Seattle. Their primary complaint is that the building interacts with the environment around it in a very artificial manner (i.e., reflections of the street in the glass exterior, the slight overhang on 4th Ave.).
Dissent is always good, and I'd agree that the building could present a more welcoming set of entrances and walls on all sides, except perhaps the side with the parking entrance. The overhang on 4th, which puts that entrance in the shade most of the time, might be more welcoming if it actually receded back and allowed sunlight to grace that entrance. Then add some outdoor seating, perhaps a cafe, and the 4th Ave face of the library would be much improved.
My main gripe with the library, which I still admire as a building, is that the book selection is lousy. I created a book hold list of some twenty books, and over a month later not one has shown as available. I requested books across all genres, some classics, some new bestsellers. Without a decent book selection, the Koolhaas library is an expensive Internet cafe.
Hopefully my donation of over two hundred books during my recent moving downsizing will find their way to the Koolhaas library shelves. Many I'd never read, so perhaps someday I'll check one of them out to read.

Seattle neighborhoods

When I first moved to Seattle to work at, I received an orientation packet which contained a humorous overview of all the Seattle neighborhoods. While packing today, I came across it and flipped through it. I'm not sure who wrote it, but here are some of the descriptions:
  • Madison Park: Blue-blood. The place for you if you drive a BMW or Mercedes, are named Buffy, or Buf, and wear pastel plaid. Martha Stewart devotees move here. Honestly: A beautiful part of town, but don't expect a mixed cultural experience here.
  • Belltown: Used to be the art section of town, now it is run over by mid/late 30-somethings with too much disposable income. Good restaurants so at least you won't go hungry. Awesome bus routes to work. Invest in pepper spray futures.
  • Montlake Cut: Established. You had better garden, or have a gardener. Built on a mud flat, so the neighborhodo lullaby is the sound of basement pumps.
  • Phinney Ridge: Your basic neighborhood. The Zoo is there. Families have been seen there (that is the neighborhood, not the zoo). Quiet, good views. No bullshit.
  • Wallingford/Fremont: Daily sightings of Jerry Garcia. Irreverent, putting on a hip attitude. Debate over the coolest thing is split between the statue of Stalin [Note: it's actually Lenin], the 30-foot tall troll, and the god-knows-how-man feet rocket. More junk stores than you can count. The best margaritas in town. Every store in the central corridor has a dog.
  • Capitol Hill: If it ain't pierced or tattooed it ain't allowed. God knows why they let me live there (maybe it's the fact that I used to have 1" long red, or orange hair) [Note: hmm, a clue as to the writer's identity, though that described lots of early Amazonians]. Philosophically, the gay pride parade begins and ends here. The best coffee in town (no joke).
  • Laurelhurt: Bill Gates' home town. You get charged for each time you breathe. Most common operation is a nose job, to ensure that they can look down their nose.
  • Mt. Baker: Not for the politically incorrect, diplomats only allowed. One of the few culturally mixed parts of town. Good, beautiful walks, dogs galore.
  • Greenlake: Everyone owns a bike, everyone rollerblades. Everyone met their spouse when walking around the lake. The path around the lake is currently being renovated, from two lanes to three. One for bikes, the second for walkers, and the third for people to talk about their relationships.
  • West Seattle: Crusty, old, California wanna-be types. They commonly mistake their mold for a tan.
  • Ballard: (With a Swedish accent) Ya sure ya'betcha. Stockholm was my home town. I have a boat. I love to fish. I eat many fish. Daily sightings of Leif Erikson.
  • Mercer Island: Good schools. Must own large, expensive yacht. Average taxes paid per household greater than third world country budgets.
  • Magnolia: Just slid into the sound (so much rain this year). The only reason I have ever heard of anyone ever going there was to buy expensive Italian silver. Good estate sales
  • U-District: Fast food joints galore. Joints galore. College students pretending to be homeless. Many homeless. Dreads seem to be the most popular hairstyle.
  • Queen Anne: Primary Thursday night activity is going to Larry's (a grocery store) to pick up a date. Post-college bar and coffee-shop scene. Highest Saab per capita in Seattle. Western slope is family oriented and completely ignores the eastern slope. DM zone is Queen Anne Ave.
  • Downtown: New York style rents, but you will get 201 sq. feet so things are not bad. Tons of new condos going up which leak in the rain and wil be renovated starting this spring. Most popular activity is checking out the weekly pun on the Marquee of the Lusty Lady. Amazing Bombay Sapphire Martinis, if you are into that sort of thing.
  • Pioneer Square: few females will go there alone at night. Bar scene. Band scene. Most popular rape scene.
Some of those no longer hold true, but most do.
Do I ever loathe packing. It's mind-numbing, soul-sapping. The landlord chose today of all days to send over several dozen workers to strip out the insulation in the attic, so it was snowing fiberglass all day. I probably contracted asbestos. I'm in a surly mood, especially since many Craig's List buyers are complete flakes and never show up when they say they will.
Also because I've been on the phone half the day with customer service reps, waiting to update my mailing address. Worst hold time? AT&T Wireless. Friendliest rep? The lady from Geico, who said "all righty then" 14 times.

Omakase at Mashiko: a Seattle foodie's treat

July 1, Eric, Christina, and I went to Mashiko in West Seattle for their omakase dinner. Christina, my most passionate Seattle foodie friend, had heard good things. Her word is gospel to me, so we cruised over for a late dinner. An omakase dinner basically means chef's choice. You pay a flat fee like a prix fixe and wait to see what the chef sends your way. The omakase at Mashiko costs $35.00 a person.
Chef Hajime noticed us from behind the sushi bar because I had just received my new Nikon D70 digital SLR that day, and I'd brought it along. He came over when he noticed me snap a photo of one of our first dishes and asked if I'd mind taking some photos for him to use on a new rev of his website.
No problem, I said. It turned out to be a good trade, because Hajime proceeded to send some twelve or thirteen courses our way, and all were uniformly divine. Some of the highlights...

The sushi was some of the best I've had in Seattle
(from left: scallops, mackerel, squid, salmon, tuna)

The green tea tiramisu was incredible

An innovative sushi dessert

Hajime even created some edible art pieces

Chef Hajime is at the right, working on one of our courses.

By meal's end, I could barely walk, drunk on culinary bliss. As it was possibly one of my last visits to West Seattle, we stopped on the way home to gaze at the Seattle skyline at night.

I highly recommend this meal for foodies, especially Japanese cuisine lovers. It's the best omakase meal I've had in Seattle. If you're want more and larger photos, I've posted all my pics from the meal to a massive web page.
I've been Christina's foodie wing man on many occasions here in Seattle. She's the scout who finds out where the good places are, and Eric and I tag along. I'll miss having someone like her near once I've moved away. We had one last meal together at Lark last night. It wasn't as amazing as the first meal I had there, but it was still excellent.
Christina's about to embark on a family vacation, and a grand meal was a fitting way for us to bid each other farewell.

More Seattle Essentials

  • Cinerama - probably the finest theater I've ever seen a movie in. The bathrooms are almost fully automated. If you could wave a hand in front of the door to the men's bathroom and have it open, I don't think you'd need to touch a single thing in the bathroom. Well, except...oh never mind. We can simply agree that automated public bathrooms are a really good thing. Decent candy selection, and of course the sound system and video quality are awesome. The two downsides to Cinerama are that it's difficult to find affordable parking and the seats are in serious need of renovation. The seatback spring tension needs a dose of Viagra, or Levitra, or Cialis (hey, those TV commercials work! I remember all three brand names). If you are tall, you will have the seatback in front of you resting on your knees during the entire movie.
  • Cedars - I wish I could remember who first recommended this Indian/Middle Eastern restaurant to me, because it's a place that gets passed down from one Seattlite to another, like an heirloom. Cedars is cheap, and the food is dreamy. A real tandor (clay oven) produces fabulous chicken tikka, naan, and paratha. Cedar's chicken tikka masala or malai kofta are canonical in my mind. If you haven't overdosed on sugar in the constantly refilled chai (service is snappy), owner Mohammed Bhatti nearly always sends a free dessert. In the seven years I've been in Seattle, Cedars has never been less than packed on weekends. That's staying power. My last meal there was with Rich and Christina and Eric and Christina, a fitting last supper since they are some of the devoted acolytes who I was happy to introduce to the restaurant.
  • Summer weather - Seattle's summer climate is the nicest of any major city in the U.S. There, I said it. Not too hot, not too cool, and dry. Many days, the temperature outside is so neutral I don't feel anything at all, neither warm nor cool. There are no mosquitoes, and because Seattle is so far north, it's light out from 5 in the morning until 9:30 in the evening for a good few months.

Traffic calming

A list of traffic calming measures. Seattle employs a lot of traffic circles, a measure I've found to be very effective in reducing automotive speed.
In fact, Seattle is one of the nation's leading cities for traffic calming. As Derek noted during a recent road trip we took to Wisconsin, America excels at building roads--owned by automobiles--instead of streets--owned by the community, including pedestrians. As highways and large roads have gotten clogged with traffic, more and more automotive traffic has diverted into neighborhood streets, causing a rise in accidents in which neighborhood residents, especially children, are hit by cars.
Of course, not everyone is in favor of traffic calming. Among other things, emergency workers argue that traffic calming measures reduce response time to emergencies. It's certainly a more credible argument against traffic calming than this one.

Seattle Essentials: Vancouver restaurants

One of my favorite things about Seattle is not even in Seattle. Vancouver is just a two hour drive north, across the border to Canada. Even though the U.S. dollar is not as strong versus the Canadian dollar as it was just a few years back, the ratio is still such that Vancouver is a better city for foodies than Seattle itself.


That's not to discount the restaurants in Vancouver. For Asian dining, Vancouver is both literally and figuratively north of Seattle. This weekend I took a last minute getaway up to Vancouver with Eric and Christina and feasted at every meal as if it was my last. Our first dinner was at Bin 941, cousin to Bin 942, both tapas parlours.
bin-941-flanksteakWe sat at the bar in front of the kitchen to watch the chefs at work. The food was heavenly, especially the cinnamon chili rub Texas Flank Steak, maple syrup chipotle sauce, charred baby bok choy, cucumber salsa, tobiko, served with Yukon Gold pepper pommes frites. It was so delicious we ordered it twice.
Other gems... confit, warm nugget potato, pancetta, goat cheese and truffled sping bean salad, cinzano fresh cherry vinaigrette
...Fresh Charlotte Island Halibut filet, lemon fleur de sel crust, smoked halibut croquettes, spiked tomato "cocktail sauce", watercress garnish.
...white chocolate cheesecake (I can't remember the full name anymore, but the flavor lives on)
We ate until we could barely walk anymore, and it still came out to under $30 a person with a full bottle of wine, dessert, and post-meal libations.
ramenToday, our eyes and appetites were so greedy we ate two lunches, one at Kintaro Ramen (why no gourmet ramen bars in Seattle?) and another at the Malaysian gem Banana Leaf (like Seattle's Malay Satay, but superior). If we had had time to stay until dinner, we would have hit one of the local izakaya like one of the three Guu locations (izakaya are Japanese pubs that serve pub food/tapas; sadly, I know of none in Seattle), and if we had another morning, we would have grabbed dim sum in nearby Richmond, the dim sum epicenter of North America. If we'd had a hankering for Thai, you would have found us at Montri, no question. Korean? Jang Mo Jib. Chinese? Green Village. Prix Fixe? Cru.
We did rent mopeds and ride around town on Saturday, but in hindsight, I must confess that I think we drove all the way up there just to eat. For Seattle foodies with a hankering for new culinary frontiers, there are few better ways to spend a weekend.

Seattle Essentials: Salumi

salumi-logoSalumi is my favorite sandwich shop in Seattle, though in truth it takes its inspiration from Italian Salumerias. The cured meats there are incomparable, and the hot and cold sandwiches showcase the Salumi (Italian cured meat) beautifully. When I worked down in the International District it was my favorite lunchtime indulgence, an affordable one at that (sandwiches from $5 to $9).
The pedigree of the ownership is unquestionable. Owner Armandino Batali is the father of celeb chef and restaranteur Mario Batali. That family knows good food. One of my great regrets in leaving Seattle will be never having attended one of Salumi's once-a-month invite-only dinners.


The only downside to Salumi? The limited hours. The shop is only open Tues-Fri from 11am to 4pm. But once in a while, it's worth the drive over to Salumi in Pioneer Square pick up a sandwich to eat at the nearby Waterfall Garden Park.