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Sept. 22: Columbia City

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Sketches and Tea Leaves

            It was really great to see so many new faces at this month's sketch crawl in the International District. I hope everyone who participated in the Good Bones workshop had a good time and will join us in the future.
            Despite the terrible weather, I found plenty to draw at the Panama Hotel. I recently finished reading "At the Corner of Bitter and Sweet" and wanted to take the opportunity to visit the Panama Hotel since it plays a key role in the novel's plot.
            On the outside, the hotel is a nondescript brick building. At the base of the hotel is a tea and coffee house that is packed with artifacts from the building's history.
                The most interesting display is a window cut into the cafe's floor that allows visitors to peak into the basement where hundreds of Japanese families stored their belongings before being interned during World War 2. Trunks, books, umbrellas and other paraphernalia lay abandoned.
            The cafe also features a range of historic photos and newspaper clippings that illustrate life in Seattle's nihonmachi (Japan Town) prior to 1942. There is also a wonderful collection of books and art by various post-World War 2 Japanese artists and writers.
            If you ever have a chance to visit the Panama Hotel it is an interesting peak into Seattle's history. The Panama Hotel tea room also serves a wonderful selection of teas and coffee to help keep the Seattle blues at bay. I look forward to seeing everyone at next month's sketch crawl.


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