Sunday, August 16, 2009

Day Trip Number One

Recently we took a road trip to McMinnville and Walla Walla which begged the question: why don't we do this more often? We figured we don't have to take a week-long vacation in order to see all sorts of wonderful things in the Pacific Northwest. We could take mini-vacations or day trips. So we asked some of our friends if you had a free day and felt the road calling your name where would you go? Yesterday Paul and I picked two of the suggestions (Paul added a twist by including the new Central Link from Tukwila to downtown Seattle), and we headed off for Day Trip Number One.

My brother Jim suggested: Seattle Waterfront. Aquarium, ice cream, see the mummy dude, do the arcade, lunch at Ivar's Chowder bar, dinner at Spaghetti Factory, maybe a run up to the Seattle Center or Westlake Mall. My friend Charan agreed saying: Recently I have been thinking about doing the whole Seattle thing. Downtown, water front, aquarium, pike place market. Paul's son Ben said: come visit the Ben's...see their beautiful new apt together and go out for lunch or dinner! Paul and I have been talking about the new link from Tukwila to Seattle, and thought why not combine them all and spend a day in Seattle?

The Link was so much fun. We drove to Tukwila, parked our car and headed for the train. It was a smooth ride, a little over a half hour and we had fun peeking out the windows -- especially at the cars that were stopped on I-5 in traffic jams. Sound Transit did a good job with all the stations, and I loved looking at all the public art. (I hope they do as good of a job with their extension from Tacoma to Lakewood.) We traveled all the way to Westlake Center (a round trip ticket from Tukwila to Westlake per person is $5 and good on buses outside of the downtown free zone). It was wonderful not to have to battle downtown traffic or deal with the parking headache. We made our way up and out of the bus tunnel and shopping areas to meet up with Pat. Benagain (Ben's boyfriend is also named Benjamin. To keep them straight when we're talking everyone else calls him Little Ben, but I call him Benagain) soon joined us and we were off to Le Pichet to see Ben and have some lunch. Lunch was amazing. You can see pictures on the link above (Day Trip Number One). After lunch Benagain, Pat, Paul and I went to Pikes Place to look around their rummage sale, and then we split up. Pat had a shift at the Can Can, and Benagain was off to the Brasa for work.

Paul and I strolled around, did a little shopping, sat in the park, and waited for Ben to get off work. Then we were off to see his new apartment (he moved in with Benagain at the beginning of the month) where we relaxed for a bit and visited. Soon we were off on another bus to go to see Benagain at the Brasa. Some luscious cocktails, delicious small plates, and some great conversation had us wondering why don't we do this more often? It was getting late, and we had to get home to our puppies, so it was goodbye hugs all around and off we went to Westlake Center to catch our train home. It was around 9:30 when we pulled into the driveway, and the girls finally forgave our abandonment after some pets, and a very late dinner.

We managed to do most of the things on the list. Westlake Center, Pikes Place, ice cream, lunch and dinner, but never made it to the waterfront. Another time absolutely. Pat wants us to move to Seattle, but we both agreed -- Seattle is a great place to visit but we love living in Tacoma. What a great day!

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