With full coverage of the “Food” part of the 3F’s of travel, I move onto the other F’s: Friends and Fun.
I have not one, not two, but three good friends living in Seattle (if any other friends want to move to Seattle, I’m not opposed as it makes visiting very convenient!). Part of the fun of exploring the city is doing it with friends and sharing the experience. This is not to say that I won’t get out on my own, because I have no problem wandering around on my own.
To kick-start the trip, I experienced Eurovision for the first time. Think American Idol (singing) meets The Great British Baking Show (in terms of the ‘prize’ and goodwill/positive vibes). I got a crash course in this singing event that started in 1956 and has been going strong ever since. [Fun fact: Abba got their big break when they won in 1974 with Waterloo.] This all day event was hosted by a fabulous couple, BYOB/eats style and complete with unique in-house voting sheets (categories such as “bop-ness”, “feels”, “overall performance”, “outfit worth snatching” etc.). At the end of the afternoon the votes were tallied to see how the Seattle voting compared to the European votes – we weren’t in agreement but great fun was had by all.
Other highlights included GOT series finale at a friend’s house, lifting with my OLY coach followed by a poke dinner with Coach and a fellow lifter. I finally got to meet Orsa, and Andy, while catching up with my good friend Aimee, who I’ve known since the 8th grade. Aimee recently moved to Seattle and it was fun being able to catch up on all the adventures that had occurred since we last saw each other.
David and I spent lots of time exploring together. Some things were new for just me other things were new for the both of us. We drove to the Ballard Locks in hopes of seeing salmon swimming upstream in their return to hatching grounds. Sadly, no salmon were spotted but the Locks were neat to see and the botanical garden was putting on a show of beautiful blooms. We did get to watch boats coming up the locks, which is pretty fascinating to watch.
The Memorial Day weekend brought the full gamut of weather conditions but we didn’t let a little rain slow us down. First stop was Leavenworth. This charming village looks like it was picked up out of Bavaria and dropped in the middle of Washington. I’m assuming there is a city ordinance that requires all buildings to be built in a specific style, as even McDonald’s resembled a little Bavarian building. The town is a great day trip destination and the scenic drive from Seattle to the town on US-2 adds to the beauty of the day. The weather was rather overcast and drizzly and it was clear that people who had been intending to hike had changed their plans. We drifted in and out of shops, all of which enticed tourists with their wares, and enjoyed the gastronomic offerings that the town had to offer. While there we were treated to a variety of musicians playing in the city centre, which only added to the charm of the town.
Thankfully the sun decided to make an appearance the next day, making for a perfect outing up to Snoqualmie Falls. The Salish Lodge sits overlooking the Falls and, having learned about this a few months ago, was very excited to visit. Nature + fancy hotel = My little nerd heart beating with joy!
There is a moderate hike that goes to the bottom of the Falls (approx. 1mile round trip). The trail is well maintained, and a very popular tourist attraction.
The Fall itself is about 270 feet tall and up to 150 feet wide, pending water conditions. The hike itself does descend steeply, so proper shoes are recommended, and the trail ends at a viewing platform (where there was a line of people waiting to stand at the end of the platform and have their picture taken with the Fall in the background. Yes, a line. Like at Disney. It wouldn’t have been too bad minus the idiots trying to do a full photo shoot *insert eye roll here*.) In the future I would try and find the trail on the opposite side of the river where you can hike out and sit, eat a sandwich, and take in the view. It is spectacular.
This post would be incomplete if I did not take a moment to mention on of the key elements for my Seattle visit, this falls under the “Friends” element. Visiting friends, as mentioned, visiting my bestest friend most obviously (if you have kept up with the blogs, David makes frequent appearances in my adventures), AND meeting the new important person in David’s life (a.k.a. “Mr. Boyfriend”). It is an odd thing having a new important person in your important person’s life. In the 10+ years that we have been friends, this is the first time one of us has had a ‘significant other’. I’d be lying if I said that deep down I wasn’t worried at all about how this would impact my relationship with my friend. OF COURSE I WAS WORRIED. What if I didn’t like this person? What if this person didn’t like me? What if I lost my best friend?!? ACK! The dr-a-ma of it all! Not wanting to be cast in the next telenovela, I snapped out of it pretty quick and shared these feeling with my buddy, who rolled his eyes and laughed at my “ridiculousness”. (He wasn’t wrong).
However, I was nervous to the dynamic of this new individual. I did realize that just as I was nervous about becoming a 3rd wheel, this new person was probably also nervous to being a 3rd wheel, as he now had to navigate the inside jokes, the non-verbal communication and all the other things that go along with a friendship of many years. The epiphany that I had is that it doesn’t matter what the dynamic is between me and this new person (obviously though the hope is that you get along and the person doesn’t appear to be a psychopath or serial killer..however, I have confidence in David’s judgement in a person’s character so those last two options seems unlikely). What does matter is that my friend is happy, in his soul, heart and whole self. Seeing him happy and being another version of his best self is truly all that matters. If I can’t give my “blessing” to that then I’m a horrible, selfish human who should be shoved over the Falls. That isn’t really the way I want to go out.
At the end of the day, Mr. Boyfriend is a lovely person and a good balance to my friend. I enjoyed the time that I spent with them and I look forward to the three of us having more adventures together. There is always room in my tribe for another awesome human…at the end of the day – Love is Love.