I was in Seattle to photograph BlogHer Food a few weeks ago, and decided to arrive a few days before the conference to catch up with dear friends and the beauty of the Pacific Northwest. It was exactly what I needed. The weather was as grey and rainy as you’d expect for the region, but perhaps it’s because I get more than my fair share of sunshine in California that I found the landscape of pine and fir trees a refreshing sight from golden, sun-drenched fields. The other part I loved was being able to walk everywhere. To the coffeeshop. To the bus stop. To lunch. Oh, the simple joys of walking in the city, an activity I used to hate to my core, now viewed as a luxury and a delight. How ironic! It also helped that I was based in Greenwood, one of the city’s cutest neighborhoods, where everyone’s front yards are a testament to their green thumbs. Or they just have really talented gardeners.
As if the graciousness of the people and the city weren’t attractive enough, there is also the question of the food. Oh the food. Proudly local, sustainable and, of course, delicious, but without the self-consciousness and attitude you might find in a big city food scene (naming no names here). Delancey‘s pizza crust is certainly something special, as is Sitka and Spruce‘s homemade yogurt, their sourdough bread and their butter. I realize that it is a little ridiculous to wax lyrical over bread and butter, so I will spare you the horror – just get there already and discover it for yourself.
Then there were the home-cooked treats: Sam‘s red cabbage coleslaw that got better with each day; a dinner with Indonesian friends featuring the tastes and spices of home; and an evening of desserts featuring Ashley‘s essence-of-summer strawberry tart, along with other treats she whipped up in an afternoon. I was so spoilt by the hospitality it was just as well I only had four days for socializing. There were attempts to exert the work muscle as Marge Granola‘s packing elf, but we got distracted by the lure of happy hour cocktails on a chilly Monday evening. By the end of it all, I was well and truly ripe for some hard work!
And work I did, throwing myself into two and a half days of observing and documenting the essence of a conference. Capturing expressions, gestures, hugs, smiles, exclamations, details….there was always something to photograph everywhere I looked. And, being a blogger, someone to catch up with too. I really couldn’t have asked for a better job or a better team to have done it with, and the best part is, I get to do it all again in August, this time in New York! Here are some slideshows of Food 2012 while the Flickr page gets populated. Enjoy the images and I will be back soon with a recipe – it has, indeed, been way too long.