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Monday, May 17, 2010

Seattle in 10

A few days I got back from a wonderful family vacation in Seattle, Washington with a day-trip in Victoria, B.C. Since then, I've trying to figure out how to condense a weeks worth of adventures into one post. So, I've decided to make a list of the top 10 things my family did. I was going to order this list, but decided that I didn't feel like trying to rank everything.

1. Woodland Park Zoo- My brother is a fan of Animal Planet's Meerkat Manor, so when we saw that the Seattle Zoo had a new Meerkat exhibit, we knew we had to go. It was a great zoo, and had more the feeling of a nature walk than an exhibition of animals in cages. The best part, though, was watching my brother. He wanted to see everything! We'd expected to make a quick hour trip of it, but stayed nearly three hours. My favourite animal was the Siamang, a monkey that mates for life and sings duets with its mate. We were fortunate to run into a student who was studying the zoo's Siamang pair, and told us the story behind them.

2. Seattle Aquarium- Beautiful is one of the words that comes to mind. The Seattle Aquarium showcased some of the most gorgeous sea-life I've ever seen- and a lot of it was native to the Seattle area. Like many of the places we visited, the aquarium was also very eco-friendly.

3. Underground Tour- Seattle is a city with two layers- one in top, and one underneath. This joke and pun ladened tour took us through the underground part of the city while giving a brief history of Seattle. It was hard to follow sometimes, but very cool, and entertaining. Rated PG for mild language.

4. Victoria, B.C.- We took the Victoria Clipper over to this beautiful island. I enjoyed just walking around and seeing everything, but my favourite thing was a wonderful yarn store called Knotty by Nature. They were very friendly, and let me try out a one of their spinning wheels! First time spinning on a wheel, and I have to admit, it was harder than I thought. I bought so local fibre there, and I think I'm going to save it till I have a wheel of my own. The highlight of our visit, however, was finding a sports grill and convincing the manager to turn off hockey on a tiny TV in the back and put on the Magic game.

5. Pike Market- pretty much the must-do tourist thing in Seattle, the abundance of unique shops still made this a worthwhile visit. And, of course, we bought a fish.

6. The Original Starbucks- We're not a big Starbucks family, but the original Starbucks was just down the street from our hotel, and the only coffee place that opened early enough to meet my family's early morning caffine fix. Every morning of the trip my Mom and Dad enjoyed a Cafe latte, my brother had a Carmel Macchiato, and I savoured a Chai latte.

7. Shopping- Besides the actual market, there is some excellent shopping in Seattle- and I don't like shopping. We found a wonderful antique store, where my Dad and I both bought hats.

8. Pensione Nichols- Modled after an Euroupean Bed and Breakfast, this is where we stayed. We'd only planned to stay there one night, but ended up staying the whole trip in the family sized suite (the one bathroom was a bit challegeing). It was noisy at night, but worth it for the location- literally around the corner from Pike Place Market. And the information and help we received from the manager (I think) Rich, was alone worth it.

9. Cooking in- Our last night in Seattle, we decided to take advantage of our kitchen. My Mom and I had a wonderful time sampling wares in the Market, and putting together a meal of fresh produce and even fresh garlic noodles.

10. No computer- I have to admit- this social media butterfly enjoyed being disconnected for a while. I admit to checking Twitter a few times, and to using my parents' iPhone to look up yarn stores, but it was nice to take a break from the hectic pace of the online world I work in.

Sorry for typos. I'm too tired and lazy too proofread right now.

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