golden gardens

NWN Golden Gardens – March 2011

It rained profusely, as is the tradition for the unofficial season opener at Golden Gardens Park, and the lack of entrance requirements and the massive attendance meant every Nissan in town showed (and a bunch of other makes, too), including many less-than-show-quality specimens. As Tyler pointed out the night before, though, as we were prepping our cars for the meet, this show is about the community more than anything else, and in that regard always seems to be a success, no matter what the weather.

My SLR camera was at the repair shop, so the gallery is full of the best I could do with my pocket-sized Canon Powershot while also holding an umbrella in the other hand.

Gallery is here – slideshow button is at the top-right corner.

NWN Golden Gardens – March 2010

Spent a great day with Christie, starting with the annual NWN Golden Gardens meet – the officially unofficial start to the car show season, and always a mix of rare imports, nicely-tuned Nissan and Datsun rides, and an assortment of unfortunate jalopies that fall somewhere in a spectrum of humorous to disastrous. After taking the pictures in the below gallery and catching up with several friends we hadn’t seen in a long time, the rain finally arrived in full force and chased us away. We stopped at my house to swap out the Z for my QX4 (and it’s 4WD) and trekked down to Federal Way to wish Devin and Riley a happy 11th birthday, see Mike for the first time in ages, and meet Crystal (and her delicious ice-cream-filled cupcakes). The phrase of the day was definitely “it’s way too cold for this” but we had fun anyway, and I’m really glad we chose to make both events.

Gallery slideshow is here.

So much to be thankful for

Sleeping in sunday morning for the first time in… a long time! No rush to drive a across town to spend all day in the garage. Okay, that’s not entirely true – i’m still driving across town, and i’m still anxious to get there, but for an entirely different reason this sunday! A fun reason! 😉

Logged 120 miles yesterday, things seem to be working well. Getting used to the very short clutch, the tight steering, all the stuff i bought the car for that i haven’t been enjoying lately! It really is a great driving machine, i’m going to have a very difficult time convincing myself to drive the sentra. Ever. 😉

I need to take a moment for some appreciation. I feel like i won an award or something, and i can’t take all the credit cause so many people helped along the way. So here’s my speech. I’d like to thank the acadamy…

  • Jason M, for all the phone calls – me with stupid questions, him keeping me on track – all the garage days, all the early mornings, all his patience with my learning curve and my frustration and impatience. I owe you big time, man! Next time let me buy the chicken!
  • Eric L, for all the garage days, especially since he always seemed to choose the dirty, messy, painful parts of the job – can you say “tranny bolts”? And for being so enamoured with the Z that you needed one for yourself! Welcome to the brotherhood, brother!
  • Mike R, for all your generousity with tools, supplies and time, for sharing all your cool ideas, for helping me realize mine. A guy with so much going on it blows me away and he still has time to spend whole weekend days in my garage! Now let’s get your car running!
  • Steph A, for the lovely garage for the last four months, all the patience with the mess/noise/smell/deadly chemicals/random houseguests. For driving to burien/lynnwood/everett/west seattle for parts/tools/picking up me. For understanding when i needed to spend beautiful sunny days in the garage with the door closed, for being such a great hostess and friend! You rock!
  • Travis W, with his fancy Nissan tools and the hookup on all the proper equipment – thanks for your help, man, i really appreciate it! I promise i’ll never cut your belts again… 😉
  • Clint H, for all the garage days, for putting up with all our abuse, for keeping me laughing when i took the turbos off for the fourth time! Let’s go driving!
  • Christi D, for jumping in whenever you have the chance, for your concern/reassurance/advice from the grocery store or wherever i interrupted you, for having hands that fit inside the engine bay! 😉
  • Christie S, for letting me have Jason for the last 3 months with minimal fuss! 😉 And for being just skeptical enough about everything to keep me from getting too cocky…
  • Mom, Dad, Danielle – for being so understanding, helpful, patient, loving, enthusiastic. For driving out here for a weekend so Dad and i could assemble the motor. Thanks Dad for all your help, advice and reassurance! Thanks Mom for not giving me too hard a time for buying another red sports car!
  • Sarin – thanks for all the parts/tools runs when i had no ride!
  • Sean – thanks for help with the exhaust and driveshaft!
  • Steve – thanks for the wrench, and for always being interested in my progress and stories!

This is were i’d exit the stage clutching my guilded award and hustle back to the green room to have a cocktail and see how i look on the 10 second delay. But at this award show, i get to drive the prize home. 🙂

Speaking of Nissans (when aren’t we lately?) yesterday was an excellent day for the NorthWest Nissans BBQ at Golden Gardens Park. Vince, Ben, Breezy, Aaron, Clint and the NWN gang always throw a great event, and this second annual beachside bbq was no exception. Huge turnout, some great cars there, a perfect inaugural trip for my freshly-assembled Z. They were all great about wanting to see my progress, too, have all been very supportive along the way. Actually, lots of people thought my car was worth looking at. I caught this lady sneaking a pic out her window, drive-by style! I loved showing off, it’s so much fun to drive and such a looker! 😉 And the bbq was a great time, looking forward to the next NWN event. Although i’ll wear my NWN hoodie next time (i forgot it in all my last-minute-car-tweaking madness) as that sea breeze gets a bit brisk!

Lance’s visit recap

Such an excellent weekend! Huge thanx to Lance for taking the initiative to come visit and remind me what a quality guy he is! Some great times to remember, a perfect way to finish out the summer.

I picked him up at seatac thursday nite, and it was straight to Sushiland Marinepolis for all the kanisara and california rolls we could eat. Friday we loitered around pioneer square, grabbing gyros for lunch and gelato dessert, and then took in a locks cruise courtesy of Kim (who rocks, btw), enjoying a perfect summer day on the water, complete with sailboats, wind surfers, and jumping salmon. After i ran home to get the baseball tickets i’d forgotten that morning, we watched the Mariners spank Oakland in an exciting (yet meaningless, as they’re already out of the running for the WS) game, and finished the nite at the New Orleans with spiced rum and a blues band.

Saturday morning Steph picked us up in her sweet new convertible for the ride down to Alki beach and crab cakes benedict at the Alki Cafe, prompting everyone present to conclude that we all need drop-top rides. A quick visit to Caleb’s apt to catch up with his parents, Lance’s aunt & uncle, in town from Bozeman, and then Caleb joined us for some sunshine at Gasworks park and a tour of the Ballard Locks and the (oddly) fishless fish ladder. A short stop for supplies later Lance and I were at Skyla and Jana’s posh new apartment (complete with balcony- and skylight-trimmed bathroom) for an excellent bbq and lots of laughs. Lest the fun end early, Skyla joined us for billards and a pitcher of Mac & Jack’s at the Onion, followed by the back nine on Golden Tee, before we finally retired for the night.

Lance let me sleep in a little sunday before he raided the fridge and made us breakfast! (what did i tell you about him being a good guy!). Despite my being lazy, we still managed to be in SoDo again by game time, with plenty of ticks left over for a pint or two at the Pyramid beer garden while we waited for Casey, Jenn and Matt. Matt got us into the club level with sweet tickets that only cost us ten bucks, so from the cushioned, pampered shade of the full-service section we watched the M’s once again trounce the A’s in a very satisfying last game of the season. Then (oh, i’m not done!) Julia and Steph – still lookin’ all that in their ballet-attending gowns – met us at the Garage, a billiards/bowling/arcade/bar on Capitol Hill, for a few rounds of both drinks and stick. Not too much for me, tho, cause by 6.30 we had to be on the road to the airport so i could get Lance to his flight on time. A killer visit that went way too fast!

It was still too nice to go home, tho, so i picked up Julia and we met Steph, Kim, Erwin, Julie, Scott, and Mark for smores and wine (they go together well, really!) around the campfire at Golden Gardens park (think sandy beach, sailboats, and a view of the Olympic mtns). And with a decided flourish, summer is over and fall is upon us. The looming fog will be here by morning.

So i’d just like to reiterate that i had a totally rockin’ weekend, living it up with the guy who became my instant best friend the first day of high school, and who’s always been one of the best people i’ve ever known. Lance, thanks again for coming to visit – i look forward to your next trip westward, and i’ll see you at Christmas!

NWN Golden Gardens

Well, what a week!

Let’s go in reverse chronological, just for kicks. Northwest Nissans BBQ was today at Golden Gardens park in north Seattle. Excellent turnout, great food (Breezy, Aaron, you guys rock!), incredible cars (Clint, if you ever need someone to babysit…) and of course i have pics for your enjoyment. 😉 Great time had by all, organizers much appreciated, mild weather also extremely welcome! Oh, and if i didn’t already really-really-really want a 300z, i do now. Clint is no help, either.

So, moving back to saturday morning, Danielle and Miguel headed back to montana today. It was great having them here, i hope they can come back again soon! Our last evening together was spent hosting a birthday party for Kim friday nite, which i have some great pics of, as well. I’ll get those up for ya, soon. Now it’s really early in the morning (or, late, or whatever) and i’m heading to bed. More later… i’m really tired!