But Seattle's in the Super Bowl. Instead of darkness at noon we found sunshine, blue skies, and about ten million "12" signs, which symbolizes the "12th Man," which is the town's way of saying "we're on the team, too." The town was lousy with good tidings, civic pride and optimism. No medieval fog. No brooding disenchantment. Our mission wasn't going to be easy.
First stop, the fish mongers at the Public Market. Nothing downbeat here. The monkfish had potential, but instead made me laugh. The slimy octopus tentacles were ghastly, but not exactly grim. They did make me think of Jules Verne's somewhat dark "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea," but on a much smaller scale.
It was dark out and I ambled up to a Renaissancian hotel with gilded cornices and a bronze lion door knocker. There's got to be bottled up intellectuals and artists in there. Met a charming chap at the foyer, explained my unrequited mission and he sympathetically offered that his Muse in fact was on the cusp of getting all bollixed up. Music to my ears. Finally, a semi-despondent Seattle-ite, who dressed well to boot. So we uncapped our bottle and took a tour of his "lovely lady," which he whispered conspiratorially was "haunted." I love a dapper English bloke who has worked long enough at a historical landmark that he prides himself as being "an exhibit." My dour looking docent of course turned out to be a hoot.
Went to bed later with a smile on my face. No, I didn't validate my hypothesis that the Dark Muse is best served with melancholy, or madness. It turns out the Muse is best served in a glass, preferably with friends, or strangers who could easily become friends, at a warm and inviting place. Props do help. Mahogany woods, an old rotary dial up phone, an inlaid checkerboard, a crackling fireplace and distressed leather wingback chairs it turns out can facilitate a connection with another time, which means that when you reconnect back to the present, it might just help you better appreciate where you are. Or something.