Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Seattle I

I flew out to Seattle a week ago Thursday, arrived without incident. Got to meet the team, got started working, and poof!, it was Friday evening.

And I was faced, for the first time in recent memory, with a weekend without obligations or plans. What to do, what to do?

Well, I liked the Chihuly glass exhibit I'd seen when I was in the area some fifteen years ago, so I decided to start there. I got up early (early is easier when my body clock is set two hours earlier than local time...) and headed to downtown Seattle. Turns out most of the tourist types wait until after nine to get going in the morning, so I was able to snag an on-street parking spot within a few blocks of the space needle. I got me some coffee, enjoyed people watching for a bit, then sauntered over to the exhibit and forked over the $23 entrance fee.

Without anyone to push me along, I spent the next two-and-a-bit hours thoroughly enjoying the play of light and glass. My biggest regret was not having my good camera along. The phone camera is good, but it just doesn't capture light the way a good lens can.

There was a hot yoga studio near the hotel, so I stopped in for their evening relaxation class as a way to wind down my day.

Sunday, I was up bright and early again. The hotel was dingy and run-down - not a place to spend any more time than absolutely necessary, so I decided to see what the local hiking options were. To my surprise, there were any number of good trails within thirty minutes of the hotel. I picked one, more-or-less at random, and set out to see what I could see.

I followed the road on up past the gravel fork and within a few yards of setting off down the trail found myself alone in a forest wonderland. Tall trees, lush green ferns - once I decided to pretend the roar of cars from the nearby freeway was really the sound of the ocean, I had no trouble slowing down, breathing, and just enjoying some time away from my normal life. The sky was blue, the temps on the warm side of cool. The trail was well-groomed, which made for an easy four mile hike. When I got back to the trailhead, I was glad I'd gotten there early - the parking spaces were all taken. (not surprising given the beauty of the trail and its proximity to a major population center...)

I found some good salads for dinner at a local grocery, then settled down in my room to enjoy some time with a good book to round out the day.

I'm not real practiced at this relaxing stuff, but thought I did well for an amateur!

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