Thursday, June 16, 2011

Seattle/ Whidbey Island, WA

Nearly 3 weeks ago I made my first (of many) visit to Seattle and Whidbey Island, Washington to visit Christine, Ben, and Bernoulli. It was an ahhhhh-mazing trip, amazing scenery, perfect company, and lots to see, do, and eat! Warning: this is a mega post so I hope you have some time on your hands.

Our first post-plane stop was at Pike's Market in Seattle. According to Wikipedia, "Pike Place Market is a public market overlooking the Elliott Bay waterfront in Seattle, Washington, United States. The Market opened August 17, 1907, and is one of the oldest continually operated public farmers' markets in the United States." According to me it is a fun, albeit fishy, fresh market with too many food choices. If you are in need of fresh veggies/ fruit/ flowers/ seafood/ pasta/ etc- this is the place to head. This is also the location of the first Starbucks and the Piroshky store I told you about in a previous post.

Gum wall leaving the market:

We then picked up our cupcakes from The Yellow Leaf Cupcake Company, saw the Space Needle (from afar) and headed towards Whidbey Island via the Mukilteo Ferry. There are ferries to get everywhere in Seattle!
Space Needle:

View from the ferry:

Us on the ferry:

I was happy to see all was well in the life of the Noodle when we arrived in Oak Harbor:

The next day we visited some Whidbey Island sights like Deception Pass Bridge. It kinda just appears out of nowhere and gives you some magnificent views. We stopped and hiked around for a bit with Bernoulli.
So many giant trees!

Man down:

Jumping onto the 'beach'


Succulents I found on the mini hike:


That's water under the bridge

Noodle and I on the bridge:

Kroll Family:

That evening Ben's parents arrived and we went to China City for happy hour. Basically we had tons of delicious apps (lettuce wraps were my fave!) and bevs on the cheap and reminisced about the Kroll wedding.

On Saturday we went on a whale watching adventure! We booked tickets with Mystic Sea Charters and headed out of Anacortes around 11am in search of whales! We were enjoying the views on the exceptionally clear day and settling into a series of games of Pitch when the boat captain announced that they were going to be polling the passengers to see if we wanted to go the safe route and see some minke whales nearby or go in search of a transient pod of orca whales that they had heard about up near Canada. We (and apparently the majority of the passengers) said why not take the chance, eh? And off we headed for Canadian waters. We were abundantly awarded for our gamble when we came across a pod of about 5 orca whales taking down 2 sea lions. Very cool to see. Lots of jumps and tail smacks etc. If you're in the pacific NW and have the time, you should definitely go whale watching!

After that amazing experience we decided to see some of the sites around Anacortes since we were already there.
Overlooking Anacortes:

The whole group:

The island in a lake on in island in a lake, got it?:

Teeners and I:

For dinner we headed to Toby's in Coupeville for some mussels and Toby's Red. The mussels were delish and since it was sooooo cold I had some soup which was also yummy, especially when eaten with garlic bread instead of a spoon. Coupeville had both a whale museum at the end of a pier and an awesome odds and ends store that were both closed that I must see on a return visit.

After dinner we raced to see the sunset and caught a glimpse of some pretty mountains:

Sunday brought a Yankees game (YAY) and goodbye to the Noodle (SAD). We had decided to stay in the city that night after the game so we could see some more of Seattle and to cut down on driving since my flight was Monday anyways. I miss Bernoulli already!:

And off to Seattle we go! Pyramid Alehouse was on the agenda for some pre-game nibbles and well, pre-gaming.

Time for the Yankees @Mariners game! Once inside, Papa Kroll insisted that everyone have these 'Rally Fries' which were basically fries doused in minced garlic, like seriously more garlic than you're even imagining. I had about 10 before they became unsettling- I prefer Old Bay any day! Christine and Ben both finished their little boats and paid for it all night. Apparently garlic isn't meant to be consumed in such a high volume, who knew?

After a quick nap and some more Pitch, we headed to El Gaucho on the recommendation of a friend of Ben's Dad. It was an exceptional steakhouse with a great ambiance. I had the best table-prepared ceasar salad, Alaskan Halibut, and malbec ever! The couples both opted for the chateaubriand to share. I think everyone was overly happy with their meals and we even got to see a mini celebrity- the closer/relief pitcher for the Mariners, Brandon League! Fun!

After dinner we were struggling (from garlic poisoning and overeating), but we still managed to make it out to a few bars, Bathtub Gin and Rob Roy to meet up with some of Ben's squadron guys. I had some really interestingly-flavored drinks at Rob Roy and would love to go back when I wasn't so full. The next morning we hit up Piroshkys again and headed for the airport. I want to say many many thanks to Christine and Ben for juggling so many visitors over Memorial Day and for showing us all an amazing time! Can't wait to go back!!!!

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