We recently spent six days in Seattle. The main purpose of the trip was to attend the wedding of the son of some friends from college. The dad was in our wedding and Jim was in the dad's wedding, so we go back 42 years. Man, we must be old! We had also attended the wedding of their older son at the Air Force Academy chapel several years ago, and at that time the G's rented a house and ten of us stayed there. Some of us had never met before, but the whole group got along like we had known each other for years. So the G's rented a house in Seattle this time as well, with most of the original ten cast of characters making a repeat appearance. Located two blocks from Alki Beach, this house was unbelievable and a great place to be the base for the wedding. There was easy access to mass transit, and fun shops and restaurants were within walking distance.
The day of the wedding began on a rainy note (it was Seattle, after all), but once it cleared a group of us took the water taxi to downtown Seattle to check out the Public Market Center since the ceremony did not begin until 5:00. We, of course, had to make a contribution to the Gum Wall, noted as one of the top five germ-filled attractions in the world.
|Seattle Day 1|
|rainbow over Seattle|
The wedding was nice, and the reception was held at a restaurant on the beach with a great view of Seattle. A rainbow even appeared during the reception. If that isn't a positive sign for the bride and groom, I don't know what is. We had fun toasting the bride and groom, and dancing the night away. As the bride is from the northern Kentucky/Cincinnati area, I enjoyed meeting the family and guests from her side of the family.
|view from the wedding reception|
Saturday morning the bride's mom and dad had us all over for brunch (I think there were 80 guests!) at their circa 1911 home. I cornered the mom for a bit as she does genealogy, and their family name is also in Jim's family tree. Wouldn't it be something if they are related? Following the brunch some of us went to see the Chihuly Garden & Glass exhibit. Oh my! I have been a fan ever since the Missouri Botanical Garden showed his work many years ago. What a treat to see his beautiful pieces of art in the area of the country where he was born and raised.
|Chihuly Garden & Glass|
On Sunday it was back on the water taxi to Seattle, this time to board a ferry to travel to Bainbridge Island. By the time we waited for the ferry to unload, then load up all the cars and people, and then travel to the island, it was time for a late lunch. Since it was a holiday weekend with beautiful weather and we wanted to dine outdoors, that pretty much blew all of our time on the island. We got to see a bit on the walk to and from the ferry to the town, but that was about it.
As it was overcast on Monday, a visit to the Boeing Flight Museum seemed like good option. One of the couples had already taken off for the next part of their vacation, so eight of us went on this excursion. The museum is huge, multi-faceted and very interesting. The one young person in our group, who is a pilot in the air force, got Jim into one of the flight simulators. There was a lot of rolling going on, but Jim still managed to rack up six kills as the gunner in the plane. I was content to take pictures and video of them. It was particularly interesting to see the SAM (Special Air Missions) 970, the first Presidential jet plane. It was delivered in 1959 for President Eisenhower, and remained in service until 1996. I loved that there was a doggy door in place!
|Boeing Flight Museum|
Before meeting back up with the others for dinner, three of us went to see the Hiram M. Crittenden Locks (also called Ballard Locks by locals). Completed by the Army Corps of Engineers in 1917, the locks connect Lake Washington, Lake Union and Salmon Bay to the tidal waters of Puget Sound. It was fascinating to watch the water levels rise and fall to move the boats from one area to another. What a time-consuming process!
|Hiram Crittenden Locks|
As we were driving back to West Seattle, we noticed Olympic Sculpture Park along the way. Since Jim knows the firm that was on the design team for the park, we had to stop. I wish we would have known about it sooner as it was a wonderful place to walk, see nice views and enjoy the sculptures.
|Olympic Sculpture Park|
By Tuesday nearly all of us were on the way back to our respective homes. What a wonderful time we had rekindling friendships and seeing part of what Seattle has to offer.
Friendship, fun and photo ops, what's not to love about all that?
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