Part 1, Sightseeing in Seattle

It’s Friday, and we’re off for vacation to celebrate Alice’s birthday! Dad and Mom went up earlier to do some Seattle touring and shopping while the rest of us worked. After a really busy week, we all meet up. It is going to be an escape of sorts—that’s what the cruise line advertises, anyways.

The chilly air sunk its teeth early Saturday morning. Along with that, there’s the smell of ocean. The first stop, Pike Place Market, wakes us up even more, with the cacophony of sellers, buyers, musicians, and hordes of tourists like us, and the wafting breeze of more ocean and fish. We skip the long millipede line at the original Starbucks, choosing instead to have breakfast at Lowell’s. Our parents then hop over for a snack at Ivar’s Fish Bar, reliving some sentimental moment decades ago. Andy and I tour the Seattle Art Museum.

Chinatown exudes a different type of smell—one that is common to all the Chinatowns I’ve been to. Ripe. The artistically presented Wing Luke Museum interprets the Asian immigrant experience. The exhibit that would become my favorite sits in a small alley and catches my eye: thirty-nine (39) questions for WHITE PEOPLE.

Andy drags me along for a Segway tour, and it turns out to be fantastic. After a wobbly training session, we zip along the waterfront, up to Seattle Center, and loop back through Pike Place.

We take a relaxing afternoon driving and sampling tour. One slice of chocolate mocha cheesecake at Bakery Noveau weighs us all down. The arboretum is peaceful, but the Japanese garden is closed for some private moon viewing event. For dinner, we immerse ourselves in New Orleans gourmet at the Toulouse Petit Kitchen & Lounge. After overeating, the stroll to Seattle Center jumpstarts the digestion, and we end or tour in Queen Anne’s. From Kerry Park, the city lights up under the rising moon.

After breakfast in the Armory, the whimsical creations of Chihuly Garden and Glass capture our imagination. My favorite areas are the Glasshouse and the Garden, where fragile shapes bloom and bud like resident plants. Here, under the towering Space Needle, we have our parting shots of Seattle before heading to the cruise terminal.

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