Thursday, April 16, 2009

Visiting the Center of the Universe - Where there be a troll under the bridge

Based in Scandinavian folk mythology, the troll won the 1990 design competition sponsored by the Fremont Arts council and was built under the Aurora Bridge.

I sought out the troll on my first visit to Seattle and for some unfathomable reason end up visiting him every time I get to town. It may be some odd feeling of kinship, but more likely is rooted in his proximity to the Fremont Sunday Market.

His vital statistics include a height of 18 feet and he might drop some weight off that 2 ton frame if he quit his constant snacking on Fahrvergn├╝gen. In his left hand, he clutches an actual Volkswagen beetle.

As you may be able to tell by his even gray complexion, the troll is constructed of concrete over steel rebar and wire. Apparently, a recent visitor has attempted to enhance his lip line with the application of some pink chalk. Perhaps a darker shade would be more becoming.

My sister and I pose perched atop his left hand.

The clouds parted and the sun peeped out just in time to shop the Fremont Sunday Market. Established in 1990, (suspiciously the same year as the troll was built - merely coincidence?) the Fremont Sunday Market is two city blocks of vegetables, secondhand furniture, handcrafted jewelry, buskers, bakers, and candlestick makers.

Here, my sister Eva-Lisa tries on and models an altered coat.

Lets ask Lisa to twirl, so we can check out the tails on that coat.

Look at the appliqued Tesla pattern and the fake fur detail.
What fun!

The milliner's wire in this hat helps the brim acquire and keep a specific shape. The lady behind my sister would be the designer of both hat and coat. She had plenty of other funky designs on her clothes racks.

To the north, as you enter the market, there is an underground parking garage where vendors sell all manner of odd goodies. An accurate description is difficult, but one might call it deluxe junk or creme de la garage sale.

During this portion of our excursion we met up with an internet buddy and fellow Charmster trading partner, Janet Wilson. She helped me figure out that the charms on a bracelet I purchased represented the 10 commandments.

Should you visit the market, I recommend trying the wood-fired pizza and catching the tunes. The day we were there, a three man band played lively and melodic ditties, combining guitar, accordion and a quite skillfully played washtub bass.


P.S. Fremont is a Seattle neighborhood that considers itself "The Center of the Universe", with the slogan appended to their welcome sign. "De Libertas Quirkas" (Freedom to be Peculiar) is the unofficial motto.


  1. Hey Carina! I just read your last 3 posts and they were all really fun! You are a gifted writer and photographer (and artist!) you had a good time at Artfest-and-beyond? How about Lisa?
    It was good to meet you!
    When are we doing the postcard mail art exchange?

  2. Janet-
    Lisa and I had a fabulous time at Artfest. My sister was unable to finagle as much time off work as I and headed back the Monday after Artfest. She enjoyed the experience enough to go out and purchase paints!
    I hope you don't get tired of my travelogue 'cause there are several more posts in the works.
    It was wonderful meeting you.
    As to the postcards... Ready,set,go!