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Fording the River: Day One in the West

August 8, 2011

My recent trip to Washington State and Oregon began in the wee hours of the morning on July 26.  My dad’s birthday was the day before, so we stayed at my parents’ house and B drove me to the bus station from there.  My flights took off out of Logan Airport in Boston, and instead of having Beck drive me all the way there and take a chance on getting lost, I opted for the bus.  They take you directly to your flight company’s location, load and unload your bags for you, and play a movie on the bus.  Seriously, it’s super convenient.

Saying goodbye to B, however, was not so convenient.  While I was pumped to go, I was incredibly upset about not having him go with me.  Who would hold my hand as the plane took off?  Who would offer me gum during the flight?  Who would keep me sane while waiting in the airport?  Why on earth did I think it was a good idea to fly across the country for the first time by myself?!  With a few tears, I kissed B goodbye and he told me what only a super good husband would: “Don’t let missing me interfere with your fun.  I’ll be here for you when you get back.”  Ah, that man.  He’s a super keeper.

After some snoozing and about 2 hours, I was at Logan and began my wait for the plane.  Once on the plane, I sat in between two nice gentlemen, one who was quiet and the other who thought my wedding ring and engagement ring were friendship rings because I was 12.  HA!  Thank goodness I have a sense of humor about how young people think I am.  The man was very nice and told me how he was a minister who had just performed a wedding ceremony.  He and his wife had been married 30 years, and he told me to have kids early so I would still be young when they got out of the house.  I think he’s a genius!

After landing in Atlanta, I discovered the airport only gives you free internet to look at their colleges, zoos, and historical monument websites.  Fail.  An hour and a half later, I was on the looooooong flight to Seattle with a lovely mom and her adorable daughter beside me.  I definitely lucked out on the seat-partner aspect.

Finally, finally, finally!  I got into Seattle around 8:45 PM Pacific time, which was really 11:45 PM Eastern time.  Hooray for the body clock.  I hug tackled Bestie Al when she came to get me, and we drove to her friend’s house where we would be spending the night.  After a shower to get off the plane grime, I promptly fell asleep until the late hour of… 5:30 AM.  Yeah.  Well, it would have been 8:30 AM here in Maine, so I guess it made sense.  I dozed for a bit before others woke up, and we headed into Seattle to grab some delicious brunch.

After brunch?  Well, what else?  Sightseeing!  First, the Space Needle.  Honestly, I thought it would be bigger (insert your own “That’s what she said” joke here).It was early, and pretty gray, but it was nice that not a lot of people were around.  The rest of the park had some funky architecture that made the photographer in me go wild.Seriously, can the outside of my house PLEASE look like this?!

After the park, we headed to Pike’s Public Market, a must-see for most tourists.  Like most, I was enamored by how cool the goods were inside.  Huge, gorgeous bouquets were $5!  FIVE DOLLARS!  I tried new fruits, too, like marion berries and tay berries.  Marion berries were by far my favorite.  I could eat a whole jam of that jam.Just down the street was the first Starbuck’s location, so we stopped there to get a photo.  The line was out the door, and just having come from breakfast, there was really no need to stop much longer.Who knew the original logo was naked with two tails?

After doing the lightning round of Seattle, we were just in time to take the car ferry to Bainbridge Island, a shortcut to our next location:  Port Angeles. 

Sound familiar?  Have you read the Twlight books?  Port Angeles is where Bella is nearly attacked in the first novel and where she gets to know Edward better.  Trust me, the town likes to play that up a lot.

They also like to play up the Pacific Northwest’s love of weird art.  Case in point:  the Rocktopus.Yes, that is an octopus made out of rock.  Well done, crafty people.  Well done.

After a short walk around the coastline area and asking some questions about where to hike the next day, we bid the swaying pier adieu, grabbed some interesting sandwiches, and snuggled into our even more interesting motel for the evening… at 8 PM.  What?  We’re 80 at heart.

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