Our Mini Vacation Thingie
When we dropped off our kids and went away by ourselves for the first time in, like, aeons.
Nice shoes, eh? The dress was okay, at least I didn't feel totally underdressed. When we first pulled up I saw a group of people crossing the street in evening gowns and tuxes and I was like, "Oh, great!"
But luckily, there were also lots of people in t-shirts and cargo shorts :-)
Ed had this nifty multi-pocket shirt from Cabelas that he was going to wear, but at the last second he refused to wear it because it was too hot. He wanted to wear a tank top but I thought that was a bit much. Or rather, a bit too little.
But, about those white shoes: I never want to see those shoes again. And I didn't even walk much of anywhere in them!
What I had for dinner was:
Oven Roasted Breast of Chicken
Does it taste better if every word is capitalized, or what? Well, it tasted pretty decent.
The seating worked out niftily. When I made reservations they said we would be in the very front of the train on the car called Olympic, but when we got there the tickets said Seattle on them. That's a crowded car in the middle. We went to the table on the Seattle and found some people already in it; who were supposed to be in the next car, the Ste. Michelle, and they had already started eating the rolls and butter. We said we'd take their seat instead. They were on the side with the sun, which was the side Ed had said he hoped we weren't on. Their seat turned out to be on the shady side. So we were all happy.
"Ste. Michelle," the last car of the train, has only three people abreast instead of four, hence much more roomy. It looks tiny on the diagram because it's only half a train car! The back half of the train car was open with a railing. Since it was in the very back, nobody had walked past it to board, so didn't know it was there, so only people from the Ste. Michelle actually went out there. We could lean over the railing in the open air and listen to the train and feel the wind in our faces and wave at the stopped cars. That was cool. Much more fun than having to sit inside the train for an hour each way!
That train car was built in 1937. It's in lovely shape. I actually couldn't wait to go to the (whatever you call a potty on a train) to see what it would look like. Everybody else avoided it, I don't know why. It was tiny, all right, but totally cute and elegant, not like those horrible potties on airplanes. I was just longing to take a picture of it, but I would have had to stand out in the aisle in view of everybody to take a picture looking in the door, and I didn't want them to think I was completely cracked.
It had the cutest little toilet you ever saw, and a sink the size of a soup bowl. I think those fixtures were new but I'm not sure, could they have been well-preserved since 1937? (Why didn't I ask the waiter? -- see above about "cracked") It had a cool black marble countertop. The paper towel dispenser was a new install. But all the paneling, the wooden louvers on the door and window, the joints in the metal and stuff, were all original. So I had a seat... you know... and just kind of basked in the 1937-ness.
That's a 102 foot high trestle made of wood, built in 1891 by a company that went out of business in 1892. When we were going over it the waiter said, "Don't worry, our company conducts two safety tests on this trestle every day. The first one seems to be going very well..."
That's a BIG panorama picture I stitched together. Why not click it? My camera doesn't even have "stitch assist", I had to do it all by hand. I spent half an hour getting it just so. If nobody clicks it I'll feel unappreciated.
The train's along behind the parking lot on the right side there. It looks wavy in the picture but IRL it was level.
Should I have been interested in the winery? I kind of wasn't.
Everybody else was. There was this huge stampede of elegant ladies in gowns waiting for the bathroom at the winery. Ed had refused to use the "1937 pottie" so he joined the stampede, of course there was no line for the mens and all the men gathered around the waiting area watching the women's line slowly snake its way along into the door, smiling and feeling superior, and a couple funny ha ha ha jokes. I went there and stood against the wall to wait for Ed to come out, and all the men were giving me this shocked look like, Why aren't you in that line? Don't you know where the end of the line is? You're a female, how come you don't have to go?Okay, enough on that topic.
Too late, I realized that I might never see a winery again in my life and what's that saying about not missing opportunities to see things when you get the chance? Luckily the tour had already left.
We looked at the gift shop. Everything was wine-related of course. There were some t-shirts about "70 Years Aged to Perfection" which I thought about buying to save for when I'm 70. But that was a depressing thought. Nothing else jumped out at me. I looked at some chocolate... wine, no, chocolate, yesssss. But we were supposed to have chocolate for dessert and I figured I'd better have a little decency.
On the way back in we glimpsed our dessert being got ready in the galley segment of the train. Ed commented about how small it was. He said it was the size of piece he'd give to Mike. But it wasn't chocolate cake, it was chocolate dessert, with a kind of mousse in the middle, thick smooth chocolate-with-nuts stuff on the bottom and a layer of dark chocolate frosting on top, with raspberry stuff on the plate and whipped cream on the side, and it was "enough".
Next Day: Leavenworth
Ed wanted this trip planned, so I planned it down to the last detail. I made a list of where we were going to eat, and what stores we were going to shop at and what we were going to buy there. For lunch, we were going to go to The Gingerbread House and get a big gingerbread man, and then walk through the park eating it. But Ed bought a chicken pie and we sat inside and ate, and he didn't want to go to the park.
What good's a plan if we're not going to do what's on it?
|The gingerbread was nice but not as thick and homemade-like as I had hoped for. I make better at home. The chicken pies were delicious, though.|
We walked down the concrete in the Cutesy Tourist Trap.
One of these places just down from here is a toy store that managed to separate us from at least fifty of our bucks for a lot of imported junk, like a mirror-kaleidoscope (I love those things), and Magic Rocks, and suction-cup arrows. Ed initially bought arrows for A and not the boys, and I said that was a way bad idea. But, three packages of arrows at $6 apiece? Yipe! A board puzzle with a fairy on it... and some other overpriced crapola.
Horsey ride! That wasn't on the plan either but the dirndl lady with her Percheron pulled up to the curb at just the right moment. $25 to clip-clop lazily two blocks down and around and two blocks back.
|What I bought. That was totally in the plan. The plan was to go to The Russian Store and buy some finift earrings, and any gift shop and buy a magnet, and The Bavarian Clothing Company and buy a dirndl. Not a cutsey one like all these people had, but a more normal one, the kind American church ladies can get away with actually wearing if they leave the apron off. I found one, very nice, blue and yellow flowers and blue piping, that fit well and everything; but it was designed so that the apron had to be worn over it. It didn't button right in the front of the skirt. What a pity!|
Then, the plan was to go to Seattle the next day and watch Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith in digital glory at the Cinerama. But the movie started at 11:30 and Ed didn't want to get up at the crack of dawn and zoom to Seattle. There were posters all over Leavenworth for Star Wars showing at the Icicle Junction Family Fun Center (I kid you not!) so we went to King Ludwig's and Ed had Wiener Schnitzel and I had a Garden Burger. Ed insisted I get fries also, so he wouldn't be embarrassed with a big tray while I sat there with my little burger. So I paid $2 extra for fries I didn't eat. Then we went to some place with "Chocolate" in the name, and Ed got a big white chocolate and peanut butter swirl thing, and I got a chocolate-covered graham cracker. Yum! And something that was supposed to be chocolate over "honeycomb", but it wasn't honeycomb it was some honey-flavored candy that was too hard to even bite into! I wanted to go back and switch it for another graham cracker but we had already tramped half of the mile that it was down to see the movie.
So I didn't see ROTS in digital as I'd hoped. At least I got to watch the entire thing this time instead of having to haul little darlings to the bathroom THREE TIMES in the middle of it! That's good enough, I guess. Ed said, "It's a good movie, but I don't see what all the fuss is about." Well, you either understand or you don't.
After the movie it was dark and cool outside, so we have a lovely long walk back to the room (thank God for my ugly shoes!) I took a picture or two in the dark. There were only a few groups of people around on the streets, all of them suspiciously too happy, if you know what I mean.
We went back to the room at eleven and that was a big disaster, which is a separate story. So we slept in a regular motel somewhere else at three in the morning.
The Sapphire Princess. Not at all part of this vacation, but it was there by the side of the road so we had to pull off and rubberneck. It was worth a gawk. Do they have enough lifeboats for everybody? Shall we go on it sometime? I don't think we'd exactly fit in.
And there's the little guys back again :-)
Some little girls too!!