August 04, 2008
day 8: eagle has landed

My narrative has gone off the rails in a big way, literally and not. That’s the problem with staying with family and friends: it’s too comfortable. In a hotel you have dead time, weird inconvenient lumps of minutes that bubble up unexpectedly and are perfect for a few scribbled words. Staying with my uncle and his husband has been enveloping in the best way, but not in a way that encourages writing.

Seattle is fabulous. Yesterday we did an all-you-can-eat dinner at the Alki House, a stunning log cabin that specializes in a homestyle fried chicken dinner with all the fixings. They even let you take home extra chicken, a courtesy unheard-of in the a.y.c.e. restaurants of my experience. This was after a day spent at the ocean, in a place called, confusingly, Ocean Shores. The day was grey and unpromising, but the presence of the ocean always makes up for a sullen sky. We started out in a crowded section of beach, then drove to a quiet rocky place where I scrambled up dangerous piles of boulders to keep Blake safe (with the power of my mind, I suppose, since he was moving too fast for anything else to help). On the top, in the whipping wind, we saw seals bobbing in the surf and some kind of porpoise showing off deeper in. Every time a fin appeared, I squealed and giggled in star-struck joy.

Today we visited Pike’s Place Market, which really is as wonderful as you’ve heard although it’s about 50-deep with tourists. (Not that I’m complaining – I am a tourist.) Mom bought a stunning bouquet from one of the many flower stalls, and I tried to take as many pictures as my macro setting and everyone else’s pace would allow. Lunch was a deeply satisfying combo of dolmades and spanokopita, eaten in a tiny alley somehow overlooked by the crowd. I found soap for my neighbours and a reprinted book on the art of kissing. (It’s of primary importance for the male to be taller than the female, so his raw vitality has the opportunity to make her swoon. Otherwise, the kiss is meaningless. D’oh.)

In the afternoon we went to Bainbridge Island, where I was turned loose in the legendary Churchmouse Yarns and Tea. As my tales of yarn tourism are generally only of interest to my knittas, and most of them will see the swag when I get back, I’ll confine myself to saying that the store itself is bright, well-stocked, and full of seductive store models that shook my every resolve. One non-fibre purchase that I was happy to make was a mug from a bird-watching series. My mug? Swallow, of course.

I’m so happy to be at my uncles’ house and so happy to be seeing the best of Seattle under their benign fussing. I’m already planning my return trip with Mason. He’d love it here, almost as much as I do.

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Don't make me send out the Blake. He doesn't listen to *anyone.*