We woke up early to a cold, gray day - exactly how I like them.
We didn't have a lot of time for wandering around since we were meeting Mike for lunch at 1:00 p.m. and then heading to the airport for our flight home.
One thing we definitely wanted to do while in Seattle - but hadn't yet managed to fit into our schedule - was check out theSpace Needle, Experience Music Project and the Science Fiction Museum. Strangely, we spent one of our dating anniversaries in Cleveland, visiting the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame so this seemed apropos.
Before walking over to the EMP we took a couple of pictures of the Space Needle but decided not to go up because (1) we'd already seen an amazing view from the LCS Building, (2) we didn't know if we'd have enough time for the EMP before meeting up with Mike for lunch and didn't want to short-change ourselves and (3) it's damn expensive to go to the top. So, instead I took photos from the bottom. This is really the only one I love out of a set of like 20. Thank goodness for digital.
The EMP, as you probably know, is housed in a futuristic Frank Gehry building at the base of the Space Needle. Not everyone loves the look of Gehry's buildings, but I'm not one of those people. While it's not necessarily my "style" Gehry manages to create a sense of movement and motion in his buildings and when you're looking at them, they are just gorgeous. In the case of the EMP, the Monorail - designed for the World's Fair - goes right through the building.
After we were done (and finished up much quicker than I had anticipated) we took the sad little monorail back to our hotel where we made sure we were all packed and then checked out of the hotel. The Westin was kind enough to hold our bags while we walked back down to Pike Place to meet Mike for lunch at Lowell's. Before lunch though we stopped in to a couple of the stalls to buy foodstuffs to take back with us. We were *thisclose* to buying a pepper jelly when the lady told us we'd have to pack it in our checked luggage. Oops, we go carry on so we had to cancel our purchase. We were going to buy Alan's parents some boxed smoked salmon when the fishmonger let us taste some fresh alder smoked salmon and told us that he could package it up so that we could take it home with us on the plane. After tasting a delicious piece we bought a giant hunk of it to bring back to my mother in law to thank her for watching our awful cat.
All in all it was a really great trip, minus some mistakes we made in choosing where to go and when. We'd been long talking about going to Seattle so I'm very glad we made the trip. I think the length of our trip was just the perfect amount of time to get a good feel for the city and the surrounding areas. If I were to do it again I would change how we toured the Kitsap Peninsula so that I could see the rainforest and the beach. I would also spend less time Downtown and check out the neighborhoods a bit more to get a feel for how people actually live there. And I would have tried to find restaurants that weren't so darn expensive. We ate so well while we were there but every dinner out was well over what we would spend on a normal night out ... and in some cases far exceeds even a "special" night out here in Oakland.
And now I can begin planning our next vacation!