Cara accompanied me down the red carpet and back in time to experience 20th century motoring opulence at Kirkland’s Concours d’ Elegance, our local branch of the prestigious show series. Carillon Point was filled with classic beauties – Packards and Cords from the late 30’s, post-war Alfa Romeo’s and Austin Healey’s, 50’s Cadillacs – as well as more modern gems – Ferrari Testarossa’s, Porsche GT3’s, Ford GT’s. Most surprising for me were the technical innovations in some of these luxury cars which seemed so far ahead of their time; for example, a light sensor on the dash of a Cadillac that detected oncoming headlights and dimmed its own, built entirely out of relays in an age before integrated circuits. It was also a thrill to shoot such perfectly-restored, meticulously-polished cars, and ones so artfully designed and beautifully ornamental as these. There’s also quite a few shots where your intrepid photographer is reflected in the chrome; so many mirror-finish surfaces in such close quarters made a few of those unavoidable, and I left more of them in the gallery than I normally would because I just enjoyed the subject matter.
Matt heard that Griot’s was rolling out the red carpet for the grand opening of their new facility in Tacoma and that it was likely to turn into an informal car show, so we rolled down there to stock up on Speed Shine and see what showed up. I caught some really beautiful classics in the parking lot, and (perhaps due to the peer pressure for such things in the parking lot of a detailing specialty shop) most of them were spotless and gorgeous. There were also some rare specimen from racing history inside Griot’s on display, which were – of course – cleaner than any water glass in any restaurant in America and I leaned as far over the ropes as I felt I could get away with and grabbed some shots of them, too. I also bought a really fancy car wash wagon/bucket contraption that is totally unnecessary and really awesome.
London is an incredible city, full of history at every turn and more culturally diverse than the United Nations on bring-your-family-to-work day. It’s a place that truly embodies expressions like “hole in the wall”, as the curved streets, winding alleys, dead-end “mews” and never-ending canyons of brick and cobblestone mean there are literally thousands of gems – clubs, restaurants, pubs, stores – that you might only find by chance, on a recommendation, or by getting lost.
I’ve been taking a lot of pictures, especially of things I don’t ever see in Seattle. For example, there have been some great British cars driving around:
As well as some vehicle owners with questionable taste:
And definitely some stores we don’t have at home:
More when I get a chance, but suffice to say that London has been a very cool experience so far!