Thursday, September 9, 2010

Back to Seattle

We just got back from a wonderful, albeit short trip to Seattle. It completed a full circle for us, returning to where we left last August. We stayed with our friends Greg and Laura, the same people who we stayed with our final two weeks in Seattle. It was a whirlwind tour, similar to the type of visit we used to do when visiting the East Coast; we visited many, but not all, of our friends spending a few hours with each group. We also went to two weddings, one of which was south of Portland, Oregon (about a four hour drive each way). In between the weddings and visiting we found time to go to many of our favorite Seattle places, including several yummy meals.

The trip started out on a good note leaving Boston when, on account of hurricane Earl, flights were rearranged. We originally had a flight to Seattle connecting through Houston, but instead they "bumped" us to a direct flight! This got us into Seattle two hours earlier than planned. However, because we'd prepaid for our rental car we couldn't pick it up early unless we paid for an extra day (which, according the helpful rental agent would be three times our online daily rate, plus taxes of course). We decided to wait. Then they "upgraded" us from a compact car to a Ford Flex! It's a nice car, but it seats seven and doesn't get the greatest gas mileage. We complained and tried to get a compact car like we'd requested, but in the end were saddled with the Flex. (It was actually very comfortable but ended up getting 20 mpg; it cost over $50 to fill up the tank!)

Then more travel-related snafus occurred with the first wedding we went to. We had to drive to Hillsboro, Oregon for the wedding on Saturday, but when we showed up at the wedding location it was empty with no cars or anybody around. We didn't have the invitation with us, nor did we have Irene's phone number so we had no idea what was going on. Eventually as we were walking around someone came up to us and asked if we were there for Irene and Chandler's wedding. We said we were, and he said the wedding had moved to a new location about 45 minutes away! Apparently she'd e-mailed/messaged me somehow but I never got the message. Anyway, we found the new place, but missed the wedding. We did enjoy the reception (along with the open bar) and excellent cake.
Then the next day it was back to Seattle to meet some friends for breakfast. This began the baby tour part of our visit, where we got to meet all the new babies from our many friends who had babies while we were gone on our trip. We met up with Lynn and her son Theo and Sadie and her son Angus (who was born February of 2009 so we'd met him before). Here's everyone in front of the big Lenin statue in Fremont:
We then had a nice barbeque dinner at Greg and Laura's house where we met more babies: Jeff and Rae's daughter Addy and Brendan and Sara Ann's son Jasper (who we'd met before in Boston). On Monday we went to our second wedding down in Gig Harbor, followed by the reception in Tacoma. It was a beautiful morning ceremony and yummy brunch reception. Here are Kate and Kyle walking off into wedding bliss after brunch:
The rest of our visit consisted of seeing more friends - Lane via a quick visit to his house, Chris and Cass and their daughter Caroline at lunch at a Thai restaurant, Greg and Erin and Betty at Elliot Bay Brewery in Burien, Corey at Bauhaus Coffee and Andy, Kendrah and their son Charlie along with Goldin and Kiyoshi at Agua Verde for dinner. But despite all this running around, in honor of our trip we found time to play a game of Scrabble over mochas as the glorious Caffe Fiore in Ballard, and in honor of many a past Seattle Sunday, we had Bloody Mary's at King's Hardware in Ballard.
I'll close this post with a few thoughts about what it was like returning to Seattle. I thought returning might make me miss Seattle, but although I love Seattle and always will, I don't really miss living there. It's a wonderful place, but now a place I can enjoy as a tourist and visitor instead of a resident. I'm not quite to the point where Massachusetts is my "home" but it's getting closer. (Does this mean I'm "homeless"? Maybe...) As I've said before, I think moving to a new location after our big trip has helped psychologically in that many things in our life are new and different, which eases the inevitable letdown of returning from our trip. Jaimee and I are both starting new jobs (more on that to come), we'll be moving into a new apartment (at some point when we find a nice place) and meeting new friends. The Seattle phase of our lives is over, and we're on to new things. I'll always cherish my time there, and plan on visiting as often as I can. Our next visit will be November of 2011 when the North American Bridge Championships will be held in Seattle. I guess I better start practicing now so that I can put on a good showing with all my old bridge friends next year.

One final note on the pictures. This trip was an experiment to only use the camera on my new phone. I love the phone, but the camera takes some getting used to. It's not very good in low light and because you have to press so hard to the take the picture, too many photos are blurry. I think I'll continue to bring a point and shoot for our travels as it's easier to use and takes better pictures. In any event, you can look at all the pictures online.

1 comment:

  1. It was great to see both of you again! I wish you were still living here so we could hike together, I really miss that. Somewhat sad Seattle doesn't feel like home anymore, but if you still want to visit frequently I guess I'll settle for that.

    Congratulations on your own engagement, and I can't wait for your wedding next summer!


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