Yeah!!!!! We arrived in Seattle on Monday, August 1st shortly after lunchtime. Welcomed with sunny skies and mild temperatures we were happy to have made it to the place we will call home for the next six weeks. Our stay is in Lake Pleasant RV Park located in Bothell just NE of Seattle. It is a lovely place situated along a pond and surrounded by trees. Trails meander around the property which make it convenient for walking the dogs and getting our morning workouts. We are 10 miles from our son’s home and depending on traffic (which there is much of) we can be there in as little as 20 minutes. The only con is a quite unexpected one – virtually no cell service and zero wifi. Never expected that in the midst of the city! Seems the RV park sits down in a small valley that Verizon has yet to find.
We have had a busy first week between visits with the kids and sightseeing! The first night we met our son and his family for dinner at a local pub where we enjoyed catching up and oohing and aahing over the grand kids.
Tuesday was set aside for cleaning and laundry after 2 weeks on the road. Between the 5,762 bugs splatted on the windshields and the ½” of dust coating the inside of our RV’s (America has a lot of dirt), we all had jobs to do. Once spic and span we were ready for company! Our granddaughter was the first guest and she spent 2 nights with us enjoying life in the RV. Certainly not roughing it, I think she liked being able to watch a movie in bed the best! Wednesday we hosted dinner and gave the grown-ups the fifty cent tour of our rigs.
Thursday was a very full day! Heading out mid-morning, to allow for rush hour to pass, we set our sights on Seattle to walk around Pike Place Market. With me driving and Art on Google maps we managed to find our way as though we drove through downtown Seattle all the time. After parking just steps from the Market, we ventured forth. Unfortunately, I think every other tourist in Seattle had the same itinerary and we found ourselves in a mass of humanity. Despite the crowds, this is a uniquely Seattle experience and should not be missed if you are ever in this area. Vendors selling their artwork, farmers selling their produce and fishermen hawking their fish appeals to all the senses. And, oh, did I mention the flowers?! Beautiful bouquets await your purchase and who can say no? A $10 bouquet provides you with an armload of flowers ranging in variety from Queen Anne’s lace to dahlias to lilies. Caryn and I both went home with lovely selections.
Our lunch spot was at the Pike, a microbrewery on the south end of the Market. A cute place filled with ephemera, we ate very well.
As we left, we found our way to the “gum wall”. In all my visits to the Market, I have never seen this bizarre attraction and frankly, I would have done well not to have seen it this time either. Unless you enjoy seeing chewed gum (and lots of it) stuck to the walls of an alleyway then this place is not for you. Caryn was quite grossed out and I was certainly very mindful of how close I walked beside these gum encrusted walls.
That evening we went to Red Hook Brewery’s movie-under-the-stars. Our son was helping to set up sound for the pre-movie concert and had passes for all of us to enter free of charge. Besides the music and the movie, these passes also included free eats and beer, so after staking out our spot on the lawn for the evening’s festivities, we headed to the food trucks. This is a lovely venue for such an event and for the first hour we ate and enjoyed people watching.
The movie was the most recent Star Wars film and so many came attired in their Star Wars garb and brandishing their light sabers. Our granddaughter found a group of children to do battle with and had a great time! The band came on around 7:00 and played for an hour. A “prog metal” band (according to my son) they were entertaining enough. All the band members were 16 year olds, so I’m sure they were ecstatic to play at this well attended event. By the time the movie began around 9:00, these old fogies had had enough and we left shortly thereafter to head back to our RV’s and go to bed!
On Friday while Caryn and I watched my grands, Art wandered up to a shopping area outside the RV park. There he found Carolina Smokehouse. A restaurant that enticed him with their wonderful smells of BBQ and he just had to see if it compared to ‘back home’.. So, on Saturday, we invited ourselves to the kids with an offer they couldn’t refuse – 2 pounds of smoked brisket and 2 slabs of ribs. Our son whipped up some gourmet sides and we had ourselves a feast!
Though the Sunday forecast called for rain, in doing our due diligence we determined an outing could be squeezed in before it hit. Thus we set off for the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks in Ballard. These locks, completed in 1917, move boats from the levels of Lake Union and Lake Washington to the level of the Puget Sound and vice versa. According to Wikipedia, they accommodate “more boat traffic than any other lock in the United States.” If our visit was any indication of this fact then I believe it. We watched for almost an hour as boat after boat filled up the lock. While this seemed a tedious process, I’m sure the mariners are well acquainted with the wait and take this time into consideration as they plan their day on the water. Alongside the locks a fish ladder has been constructed to provide migrating salmon an easier and safer transport through the lock system. While there we saw a few salmon using the ladders and a school hovering about the ladder’s access point. Fascinating day!
It’s been a whirlwind week and the upcoming one looks to be busy as well! Thanks for taking the time to read about our adventures – I’ll post again soon!