Sorry about the twice delay on the final installment of the travelogue. My last few days in Seattle and my return to Atlanta got a bit activity heavy and I had a ton of photos to sort through, but I’ve finally got them online.
Pipistrella made it up Thursday afternoon and we spent the evening in downtown Seattle. The Seattle Art Museum was only a few blocks from our hotel, so it was an easy walk there. I was very pleased at how clean, well-lit and safe the streets were. The museum itself is absolutely lovely. There was also some live choral and instrumental music on performance. I think my favorite exhibit was Do-Ho Suh’s SomeOne. This amazing sleeved coat is made of military style “dog tags”. The body was life-sized by the hem and tail must have been thirty feet wide. No photography allowed, but I found this image (after the cut), but it still doesn’t do it full credit.
Afterwards we walked past the downtown library which is a beautiful piece of architecture. I had been inside the day before but it was closed by the time we’d finished at the museum. Before turning in we ducked into a promising looking place called Jasmine for some sushi and drinks. The sushi was better than average but the wine they recommend to go with it was a perfect match. I’m still trying to remember the name so I can try to track some down here.
The next morning all of us (sisters, brother in law, mother, me and Pip) hooked up and took the ferry out to Bainbridge Island. The Seattle ferries are an event in themselves, complete with bike/pedestrian/vehicle passage, wireless internet, cafes, sun rooms, lounges and restrooms with all the amenities needed for a commuter.
The plan was to rent some sea kayaks and paddle around one of the calmer bays. At 60 years old, my mother did remarkably well. I think I did pretty good myself (haven’t touched a kayak in 15 years), but you could really tell my brother in law and younger sister had handled one before. I loved it in any case, and think I’d really enjoy spending more time on the water. After a some lunch at a locally-owned pizza place we took the ferry back to the mainland.
On our own, Pip and I went to the Seattle Aquarium where she was reunited with her spiritual kin, the otters and seals. We also coined the phrase “otter knot” to describe a sleeping pile of otters (cuter than any creature on earth has a right to be). I got to pet some anemones and starfish. Also, the Seattle Aquarium is further proof that the city is obsessed with salmon, but I’ll let the upcoming photos prove that. Later, we returned to the Ballard area to walk around on foot looking for a place to eat and grab some drinks. Pip had her heart set on a “dive” but touristas that we are, we couldn’t find one. We settled for Lombardi’s, a busy Italian place and settled in for a light meal and a bottle of wine. Stumbling back to bed, we turned in early.
Our last day in Seattle was pretty low key. Walked down to the Ballard Locks and surrounding gardens. At the locks we watched boats come and go. Most were sailboats, including one couple that appeared to be doing the Alaska-Baja coastal tour. Really nice set up and disciplined teamwork between them. It made me think a lot about how much fun such a trip would be. Not quite satisfied with all things nautical, we walked down to the marina and toured boats, all guarded over by a giant statue of Leif Erikson. Add a love for Viking-ish to the list of Seattle obsessions. :-) We ducked into a coffee shop called the Purple Cow along the way for a warming cup of coffee and blueberry scone. Made some small talk with another visitor to Seattle, who Pip corrected on her beliefs about Atlanta and the South. Don’t mess with the Atlanta-girl, perfect balance of tact and firmness. So proud of her.
We went back to the aforementioned Discovery Park and made our way down to the beach. Pip collected a handful of sea glass and I explained how I’d remodel the lighthouse there into a cozy studio if given half the chance. On the walk back up the beach, a harbor seal surfaced without warning and barked several times in our direction. I have no doubt it was asking Pip where her selkie-coat was. :-)
We rested for a bit once we got back (that’s a lot of walking for one) day before my mother had us, my younger sister and her boyfriend over for dinner. Pip had my mother practically in tears laughing with her stories and my sister loves having someone she can talk about art and culture with. For an after dinner walk we went back into Ballard and took in the little shops after dark, including some live flute trio at a chai cafe and some street drumming troupe. We ducked into a local rare/used book store before calling it a night.
Early morning flights, but since we were still sort of on East Coast time it wasn’t too difficult to rouse ourselves for the drive to the airport. Pip’s flight left a few hours before mine, so we had a quick breakfast together before I settled in for some quality people watching. I won’t bore you with my flight details or the horrors of Hartsfield International Airport, but suffice it to say I was travel weary by the time I got home Sunday evening.
If you run into me in the next couple week, please forgive me if I rant about how much I liked Seattle. :-)
(warning about nine pages of photos… I have no editorial restraint, grin)
I’ll post some video snippets in the days to come as well, including the Sleepy Otter clip guaranteed to bring you to your knees with cuteness.