Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Vacation wrap

Back from vacation. Seattle & the mountains were wonderful. Breath of fresh air. Lots of rain. Gray clouds. More rain.

So now another hurricane may be heading for us. And I’m going to Haiti on Tuesday for the day job. I’m feeling a little slammed. Worried. Frances could hit north of us. Or hit us directly. No one knows for sure. At least I got my PC back. Uploaded all the programs and I’m nearly ready to go again. I might even be able to update web site soon.

Thought I’d do a “best of” summary of our vacation.

Best food: Hattie’s, a hometown restaurant in Castle Rock, WA. Population 250. All in town flock to Hattie’s. Wonderful mushroom and almond chicken, breakfast specials like their orange and almond French toast. Place is decorated with antique furniture and has antique hats hanging on the walls. Even has a little corner featuring patio chairs and a table with a beautiful garden mural. Waitress sent a customer out to buy milk for DH’s tea when they ran out. That kind of place.

Best clam chowder: The Loose Caboose in Long Beach, WA. Razor clams are the area’s specialty. This clam chowder is thick with huge chunks of potatoes and clams. Cute little dining stop in an old train caboose.

Oddest moment: Driving to Long Beach and passing a car where a woman drove holding a paper bag to the side of her head. It looked like she tried to shield herself from the sun. But there was no sun. Maybe she was a vampire. Go figure.

Most sobering moment: Atop Coldwater Ridge on Mt. St. Helens and seeing the ruins the volcano left behind. Corpses of blackened trees still lying on their sides. Colorful wildflowers sprouting next to the ghost forest.

List of things I’ve always wanted to do: Seeing Seattle from the Space Needle. Visiting the fish throwers at Pike’s Place Market. And seeing an actual Heisler engine run on the Mt. Rainer railroad in Elbe, WA. DH and I drooled over this engine. A real beauty.

Most “I told you so” moment: At our hotel outside Mt. Rainer. Room overlooked dark, deep forest. DH said there were critters back there. I said no. Next morning, woke up, pulled curtains and a deer was wandering outside our window. I gasped and donned clothing. Deer ran away. DH joked the deer was a peeping deer.

Most victorious moment: Climbing the Alta Vista summit on Mt. Rainer. I wheezed, but made it. Not bad for sea level living Florida chick who thinks high altitude is climbing a foot of stairs. Wrote with my Alpha Smart up there. Frozen fingers but still typed. A moment to remember.

Most “oops” moment: Driving the wrong way in Seattle. DH asks, “You think I can turn here?” I say, “Sure, why not?” He turns and there’s a bus heading for us. Screams, “THIS IS A ONE WAY STREET!” Backs up quicker than a NASCAR driver. Looks at me and demands, “Why did you tell me it was okay to turn?” I say, “Why did you listen to me?” We laugh. Other drivers must think, “Crazy Florida tourists.”

No comments: