Davenport Hotel
Fancy facade of the Davenport Hotel.

Reflections in Spokane opra house windows
Paulsen and a few other historic buildings reflected in glass of Spokane opera house.  Images taken 2005.

Back in a fairly large city on my bicycle tour, I decided to see if I could find any gay community.    

Going through on a bike in broad daylight before gay bars usually open, where does one go?

I dropped into the AIDS social service agency.  Just wanted to find someone to talk to. 

An office volunteer had the time and we chatted about many things.  I didn't have to be a patient, or donor.  It wasn't, pragmatically what the social service agency was about, but that volunteer took the time.  We discussed bike paths, politics, Hurricane Katrina as well as the local gay scene.

With a twinkle in his eye, one person said, "We've got a gay mayor."

Spokane's conservative mayor, Jim West, was recently "outed" with gay connections.  That makes for some interesting politics.  (Now there's a different mayor).

The one volunteer, I talked to, actually felt some compassion for the mayor.  He made a point that so many folks, from both the right and the left, are jumping on the bandwagon of a contentious recall election. 

Not living in Spokane, I don't have an opinion on the recall, itself, but I do feel Jim West showed a great deal of hypocrisy being a politician that opposed gay rights during much of his career.  
See my blog entry on the mayor.

Someone suggested I check out Merq Cafe And Liquid Lounge, a newer bar in Spokane.  (More recently, I read that the Merq is out of business Jan. 07).  I biked up there and found good conversation.  Merq is said to be less cliquish than another downtown bar called Dempsy's, that I visited in 1998

Someone took me all around on the second level.  Exclaimed, "look how classy these chairs are." 

A trapdoor in the ceiling led to an unfinished floor above that.  The third floor looked like empty rafters.

It was fun to wander around and visit with folks.  Not that busy in late afternoon.  I felt welcome there, but wanted to leave before darkness set in so I could bike out to my motel with out having to go through the trouble of strapping on my light.

More Spokane images on my Flickr

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