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Report 1953: Vancouver/Vancouver Island/Seattle July/August 2011

By Panda from UK, Summer 2011

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Page 8 of 12: Day 8 To Seattle

Clambering over a sleeping daughter on the pull-out couch first thing in the morning, my husband and I tried out the bonus feature offered by the hotel – a complimentary pass to the Athletic Club two blocks away. It didn’t look very promising from the outside but was a large and very well equipped gym with several rooms. We stood wondering for a while what a couple of the machines were actually for!

A breakfast basket had been delivered to our door whilst we were out (less of a feast than it sounds) so we ate and packed up again and on the road, crawling up the hill behind a road-line-painting lorry. There were signs for people not to cross the line (it seemed to be going over it for the second time) which was merrily being ignored which resulted in quite a mess. On the way out of Port Townsend we passed some of the locations where ‘An Officer and a Gentleman’ was filmed, appropriate singing of 'Up Where We Belong' took place in salutation.

The drive down to Bainbridge Island was along forested roads, with occasional glimpses of small farms in shallow valleys. We saw ‘wait here’ signs a long way back from the ferry, showing how busy it can be at times, but we only had about 25 minutes to wait. It is a lovely way to arrive in Seattle with charming coastal views on the way in. The Blue Angels aerobatic team were practicing their moves as we docked, preparing for the Seattle Seafair.

Navigation through the streets of Seattle was by luck rather than judgement, especially as there were diversions due to road works, but we arrived at the next Hampton Inn (just north of the Space Needle) after a few attempts to get on the right road. It was a pleasant suite, with a large kitchen area, equipped well enough to cook a full dinner but with no table at which to eat. Renovation works were taking place in the hotel which caused no disruption to us but it is a labyrinth of corridors, especially on the lower side.

A hot afternoon walk, vertically, to the Queen Anne area caused rebellion in the ranks, but they had to admit the view across - down, even - to the Space Needle and the cityscape was spectacular. We checked out a few local eating places and went for dinner at McGuiganns - a pub-type bar/restaurant with good beers and reasonable food. Our waitress delivered the drinks then there was a long wait until a very harassed cook in kitchen clothes came out and delivered our plates. Looking for a drink refill, we called the waitress from another table who had no idea that ours had just disappeared, never to be seen again by us.

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