Exploring Seattle – Part 2
Saturday, February 23, 2001
Today, we wanted to site see. We went to get Chuck’s mom so she could join us, as Chuck had some business to attend to. The first thing we did was look for a memorial to Sadako Sasaki. Sadako was the little girl in Hiroshima who thought that she could be healed of the radiation poisoning by folding the 1,000 paper cranes. It took us a while, but we found her memorial, and we were glad we did.
The memorial was small, but finding the monument to peace was worth the effort. It was a reminder not to give up hope, even though there are so many people in the world who don’t advocate peace. Obviously, we support peace, but understand that is often accomplished by balance of power and making an effort to control unstable countries.
We drove around downtown some more and, stopped at a McDonald’s near the Space Needle for a short rest break. We didn’t go in the Space Needle at that time, because we knew that everyone would probably want to visit it at some point during the trip.
Chuck’s mom wasn’t feeling well, and asked that we take her back to the hotel so that she could rest. Terry told her that he was sorry that she didn’t see much that morning. The interesting thing is that it is all in a matter of one’s perspective. She said that she thought she saw a lot because we had driven around downtown, saw the marina with a ferry boat that is being restored, saw the memorial, and saw the Space Needle. What a refreshingly positive outlook.
Terry and I then came back and went to the Pike Place Market. The market is primarily a produce and fish market. It also has food vendors and some souvenirs. While there, we tried some bakery products from Piroshky Piroshky, a Russian bakery. One was cheese bread, and the other was an orange cinnamon roll. Both were excellent. The very first Starbucks was located at the Pike Place Market, so of course we had to go there. There were four or five men singing in front of the Starbucks.
While at the Pike Place Market we looked for the fishmongers who throw the fish to each other. They were yelling and cutting up and having a good time. There was quite a crowd around, so we didn’t get any pictures of them throwing the fish. One of the interesting things about the fishmongers is that they have a very positive attitude about work and enjoying your time while you are working. The airport is currently presenting the fishmonger’s theories to all of us, as a way to boost morale after the layoffs that we had subsequent to 9-11. I have not been to the fish training yet, but I will be attending next week.
Sunday, February 24, 2002
Today is a bright sunny day. We took the gang site seeing in the Explorer (also referred to as the bus). The seven of us crammed into the Explorer. We even managed to get the baby’s stroller into the back behind the last seat. It was fun taking the bus around with everyone together. That way if we got lost, at least we weren’t separated from each other.
We went to the Museum of Flight. The museum has a SR71 Black Bird spy plane. I didn’t think I would ever get to see one, so I was in awe. The plane is beautiful, powerful, and sleek. We also saw the original Air Force One.
We went to the Space Needle. An elevator is taken to the top and one can walk around the outside of the Needle on an observation deck. It is an incredible 360-degree view of Seattle. We knew we should go that day because it was such a clear day and the view of Seattle would be spectacular. We didn’t know if we would be fortunate enough to get any more pretty days. It was very cold and windy though.
Several of us toured the ship while Chuck wrote his speech. We’d previously been on the U.S.S. Spruance in Jacksonville, and this ship was identical. However, I find the tours to be interesting and I always see something new each time we are on one of his ships.
Chuck’s quarters are quite nice, and are larger than the XO’s (essentially the assistant captain) quarters that we saw in Jacksonville. The Captain’s quarters have a sitting area with couches, a dining table, a desk and computer. He also has a small refrigerator. He has another room with his bed and a private bathroom with a telephone by the toilet.
To be continued…