Today was the second Sunday where I spent most of the afternoon biking into Redmond and then hanging about the Redmond Town Center. The RTC is appropriately named, it is about the center of the town's few activities. What's interesting here being how much it proves that Redmond isn't much of town, because the Redmond Town Center, the faux downtown, is nothing but an open air mall in the modern "prettier than an average strip mall" style (like the Summit or 4SL back home). Redmond has almost gone out of its way to remain such a "non-real town". It wouldn't really exist as a city without Microsoft, merely a suburb, perhaps. Then they decided that they absolutely didn't want a traditional downtown and so the rule is that no buildings are allowed above 3 stories. Honestly, it seems that people are pretty happy with the city as extended mall concept, leaving them the illusion that their expensive homes are more rural than they are.

I missed Lewis Black's visit to the RTC (but I did today pick up one of the remaining autographed copies of Nothing's Sacred), but I'm told he definitely had a few short words on the "Town Center".

I ate again at what is arguably the best place to eat at the RTC, Thai Ginger. The Seattle area has some cuisine areas that are lacking (for being such a "Seafood Town", I would kill for a decent mid-range King Fish-esque seafood place), but Thai is not one of them and Thai Ginger is one of the better ones, which is surprising for its Strip Mall surrounding. It quite reminds me of Sala Thai (I love Sala Thai back home. Weird tangent story, I actually was one of the first customers in the week it opened. It was apparently founded by a man who had worked in a Factory for decades, and each week he'd talk about how much he dreamed of creating a high class Thai place...), which informs my meal choice. I was thinking it over, and today was one of the warmer days I've seen this summer but I still ordered the Tom Yum (Thai Hot and Sour Soup). Sala Thai got me hooked on that delicate spicy taste of lemon grass and cilantro with chicken and mushrooms. (Sala Thai originally always included a cup of Tom Yum with lunch, but then started asking people if they wanted an alternate instead, I guess because it is such a wild thing for newcomers.) I have to say that the Thai version is my favorite of all the Asian Hot and Sour soups, because not only does it warm the body on a cold or rainy day, but it seems to generally just warm the soul no matter the outside temperature. Probably just because its a good taste.

I should have done some packing today, but spent most of the afternoon just having random conversations as I moved from Borders to EB to Thai Ginger.