Tuesday, July 28, 2009

9 Things I Did On My Trip And One Thing I Didn't

1. I hiked halfway, well not really, up a mountain. We were at the Timberline Lodge which is, approximately halfway up Mt. Hood. MamaKizz and I hiked (read: walked) a maybe a thousand more feet up. Despite telling me it made her breathing hard she was the one who was ticked that we didn't walk the rest of the way (at least another thousand feet up) to where the lift let people off. I told her she was welcome to go, she'd just have to do it alone. It was gritty and windy and she was wearing the one jacket we had between us.

2. Instead we went to the pool and hot tub. I haven't been swimming in years, it turns out. I can't remember the last time I went swimming. I have a swim suit but I'm pretty sure it has the tags still on it, though I bought it at least 7 years ago. I also failed to pack it for this trip so, wherever it is, it still has the tags on it. Mom lent me one of hers and we had a grand old time. I should swim more. I'm not very good at it but I really like it. Also, "Hot Tub" has just officially made it on to my list of things I want if I win the lottery.

3. I went to the top of the Space Needle. I am afraid of heights and I am afraid of building collapses. Also, being stuck in an elevator and having an elevator plummet to earth unchecked. I was by myself, though, (sometimes it's easier not to panic that way) and I thought I should give it a try. It's something I never would have done if I lived in Seattle (see: Empire State Building + living in NYC) so it also held appeal. It turns out I kind of liked it. It was after dark so the lights were pretty, the elevator operators talk the whole ride and they tell you how long that ride will be (40 seconds) so it didn't seem too bad. The thing that changed the face of the visit for me was the wall of facts. As soon as I started to learn about the structure and the history it has endured my mind started to spiral off into bad places with planes and earthquakes and lightning and how soon before impact one might look forward to losing consciousness. So I got right back on the elevator and went back down. Perhaps not the wisest $16 ever spent but worth it I think.

4. Had dinner in an old firehouse with one of our Guest Bloggers. She's a full fledged resident of Seattle now, all her things live there, too, as of a few weeks ago. I had a gourmet pizza made with all local ingredients and she had a schmancy grilled cheese sandwich with a watermelon salad side and we shared and it was awesome.

5. For dessert we hopped, skipped and jumped (low jumping, we'd just had a ton of local cheese) across the street to have cupcakes from Cupcake Royale. For years I've read Ampersand and when Chiara lived in Seattle she was a Ballard (Free Ballard!) resident and she often trekked to Cupcake Royale for a treat. That made it one of the few things I knew about Seattle before I went and a place I was determined to go. My Peppermint Party cupcake was all that and a bag of (chocolate) chips.

6. I took the ferry to Bainbridge Island. At a friend's suggestion I wanted to take at least one ferry and he said that, were time not an object, the Bainbridge Island ferry was the one to be on. It was foggy in Seattle and windy cum frigid on the water also magical and bizarre and I'm really glad I did it. When I got to the island I took a walk along the harbor, into town, looped through the tourist traps, got a non-Starbucks, non-coffee to keep me warm and headed back on another boat. (The return is free! The ticket seller thought I was an idiot not to know that.)

7. The friend who talked ferry with me is someone I haven't seen since I was a freshman in high school and who I only began talking to on Facebook recently. Facebook has been our only contact since he left all those years ago. His family moved away when he was a sophomore. We met for lunch and he treated me to a delicious Dungeness Crab Cake and salad and wine lunch and we had so much fun we continued on a wander through the city and he blew off the lion's share of his workday. It was probably the biggest and nicest surprise of the whole trip.

8. I went to the Olympic Sculpture Park. Twice! I planned it into my route to go meet B for lunch and took a good long while scoping it out and photographing it and thinking about sculpture and art. Then B and I used it as a mid-wander coffee (and non-coffee) stop along our walk. We sat in the arty chairs on the simple patio and looked out over the enormous, metal sail-like structures and wondered why he didn't take his kid here more often. My favorite pieces were the metal tree and the driftwood swinging sculpture. Photos will be forthcoming.

9. I kept running into posters advertising an exhibit at the Seattle Art Museum. I loved the image on the poster so I figured, if time permitted, I should probably check out the museum. The image was from a Wyeth exhibit (Andrew, I think), one of his Helga portraits. There were a lot of things to like in the museum but the tiny Wyeth show was still my favorite. There's something of the soul of a great photograph in his paintings without sacrificing the artist's emotion that paint allows. Had I not been elbowed out of the way by a gaggle of officious old biddies I might have stayed there all afternoon.

10. I did not see Mrs. G. We had great plans, she and I, but storm fronts in her own life and a distinct lack of anything good from my cell phone service provider meant that we never managed even to speak while I was in her town. Since I don't know her actual last name or her address I could not even track her down and leave a cupcake on her doorstep. It was my one great regret of the trip. Even worse than not packing a swimsuit or pyjamas.

5 comments:

  1. Oh, MAN! I was having fun until I got to #10! You're handling it FAR better than I would; to not have met a fellow blogger - especially after arrangements were made to do so - would have totally bummed me out.

    I'm so sorry.

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  2. I am so happy to hear you had a blast in Seattle. I miss that town since I lived there 14 years ago, and would love to go there and play tourist. I never heard of Cupcake Royale, but can still easily remember how to get down to Ballard (Did you go to Ray's) from where I used to live. Also, I LOVE that you took the ferry to Bainbridge, and you experienced typical weather to boot.
    Miss Boo was born there and I look forward to touristing it up with her at some point before she leaves me for college...

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  3. Chili, why do you think it's taken me so long to say it. I am crushed and I took it personally even though I knew that wasn't the case and I couldn't even speak about it. I'm trying to get over myself but it's not easy.

    O'Mama, I don't know if we went to Ray's. It was a cool bar/restaurant in a converted firehouse and it was yummy.

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  4. Sounds like a lovely time.

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