The last few days Traci and I were engaged in a long discussion has taken our minds to the edges of their not so startlingly limited abilities. We were talking about different areas of the country. We were stuck on where we should take the family next. We had heard all of the great things people have experienced all over the country and we were at a stand still. I needed to start my licensing process soon for a new destination so we started the long discussion and it has continued.
We finished the last few days of our visit with Grandma and Grandpa with more sight-seeing. They explored the Turner Joy destroyer in Bremerton while Grandpa highlighted their tour with a comparison of the boat to his boat when he had been in the Navy. I was disappointed I hadn't been able to go along on the trip. Grandpa had told many tales of Navy life on the high seas in such close quarters.
The next day I was able to be there. We headed down to Seattle to the aquarium and a harbor tour with plans to finish the day at the Salmon House restaurant across Lake Union from Seattle. It was a busy day and we all enjoyed it. The aquarium gave us opportunities to see an octopus, jellyfish, flashlight fish and several marine birds. We had a harbor tour take us from Lake Union to the Puget Sound through the Ballard locks. This was a great chance to see many sides of the city with an exhaustive and somewhat exhausting narrative during the entire trip. The Salmon House was a favorite place to eat. The Ivar's white clam chowder was a cup of hearty magic and the smoked salmon made me forget all of my troubles for fifteen wonderful minutes of gastronomic bliss. We were excited to have the chance to share these delights with Grandma and Grandpa.
A strong voice for a trip to Alaska came from a recent visitor to our trip, Ginny. Olin had e-mailed us and asked if we were going to be around in June. They had plans to visit the area and wanted to see where we lived. We drew them in with our pictures of the view of the Puget Sound from the living room. They arrived on the day Grandma and Grandpa left.
They had booked a hotel in Seattle and agreed to drive up to Edmonds for a little visit. We walked down to the Thai restaurant in town and learned Olin could speak Thai, limited Thai, but he made the server look twice. We shared stories from our trip and their adventures.
Olin had been to Seattle. He spent a few days in town and grew bored of the local scene deciding to explore the Olympic Peninsula. He ended up hiking up through the Hoh Rain forest to a huge blue glacier. He described the creaking noises the glacier made as it slowly shifted and changed shape. I wanted to see and hear the blue glacier.
Ginny had spent several years in Alaska in small villages out in the bush. She told of her adventures and made a strong pitch for our next destination to be in Alaska. She had us hooked. She had gone through three days with caribou clogging the entire village. The animals had wandered into town and all of the people in town worked around them. She had learned different trades from the members of the community, beading, cleaning animals and fish. We spent the next day scouring available resources and routes to Alaska.
We didn't find a way to make Alaska workable. Traci chastised me for not getting pictures with our Texan cousins.