Today was the day to return my RV and make my final preparations for heading home.
I was up early to shower and finish up my RV chores – pack, clean, dump, fill with water, etc. I left the campground at 8 and headed back to Everett, an hour away! Once in Everett I got propane to replace what I’d used and filled up with gas before returning to Cruise America. My check-in went flawlessly and soon we were on our way to Seattle!
The plan was to hit the two biggest Seattle tourist attractions: Pike Place Market and The Space Needle. We were heading to the Needle 1st, but it was cloudy so we decided to go to Pike Place. Took a bit of navigating – with 1 iPhone, 1 Driod, 1 Jeep Navigation System, and 1 paper map – to find parking, but once we did we headed up to the market.
What a cool place! The flowers and fresh fruit and veggies were so pretty! There was fish and meat all on display too! I could spend all day exploring all the other little shops!
After we wandered through the market we went to Etta’s for lunch! Mom and Dad had eaten at Etta’s when they were in Seattle 10 years ago and have raved about it ever since. Salmon is their specialty, and it was really good! :-)
After lunch it was still cloudy, but the weather channel said it was going to be sunny later and the sun was trying to break though the clouds so we decided to go to the REI Flagship store for a little while then hit the Space Needle.
The REI store was very nice and very big, but it had all the same stuff they have at home so I didn’t need to spend a lot of time there. Also, we were at the end of 3 weeks of hiking, I don’t need gear now!
It was almost 4 before we headed over to the Needle. As we were walking up to it we noticed preparations being made in earnest for this evening’s Torchlight Parade. People were beginning to line the streets, claiming the good viewing spots, police were barricading streets…hmmmm…we hadn’t planned to stay in Seattle that late, the parade looked like fun, but we really needed to get out!
We got our tickets and waited about an hour to get up to the top of the Needle. It was very cool! It’s only 570 feet, but it seems so high! Many of the hikes Dad and I did over the last 3 weeks went much higher than 570 feet! You could see everything! Mt. Rainier was out, but not Mt. Baker. You could also see the Olympic Mts! Lots of folks up there had no idea what they were looking at and I educated a number of people about the Mts!
We came down and checked out the tacky souvenirs in the gift shop then prepared to head out.
By now the parade was really getting going – the convertibles were lines up ready to go, the balloons were being inflated, and people were descending on the city. The parade was set to start at 7:30 and it was now 6:30.
We got the car and made it back to I-5 in less than 10 minutes. We did have to detour from our original plan, but we made it back to the highway very quickly. I challenge anyone to even try to get out of DC moments before a major city event!
We had dinner at Bahama Breeze – very good also – then after dinner we made our way to the Coast Gateway hotel where Mom and Dad dropped me off to catch my flight in the morning!
I’m ready to go home, 3 weeks is a LONG time and I miss my friends, my house, my bed, etc….however, I LOVE Washington and I can’t wait to come back! :-)