Having an awesome time in general, however. I had no idea I had so many friends in this part of the world!
Sunday, cmpriest took me on the Seattle Underground tour and then to the aquarium, where we saw sea otters and An! Octopus! (and sea otters!) I learned many things that will be exceptionally useful when I write the Heroic Hookers Of The Old West book I've been meaning to write since 2005, I think it was, or whenever stillnotbored, retrobabble, and I were crawling all over San Francisco. (The imaginary city where the book takes place is starting to form itself in my head. But it still needs a name.)
Monday, I went to the Pike Place Market with marykaykare, inaurolillium, and glinda_w. The market itself was pretty much my idea of the second level of Hell (shopping plus that many monkeys? OMG.) but the food we procured was outstanding, as was the meal the Mad Gastonomer later fashioned from its component parts. (NB: your west coast garlic scapes are not like our east coast garlic scapes. Who knew?)
Yesterday, MKK and I drove up to Vancouver. Along the way we stopped for breffast with anghara and spouse, and in the city itself we split up so she could go bookshopping and I could wander around and get the lay of the light. I wound up walking across the Granville Bridge (Your Canuckistan, where drivers will stop for pedestrians in crosswalks on freeway onramps!!!!) and oogling the inlet. OMG, gorgeous. I kept having to tell the cvillette / standuponit in my head that no, we were not jumping off it, however. (We had a similar talk later about the Lion's Gate. If he wants to BASE jump, he can get his own body.)
We reconvened at the restaurant to find out that um, the car had been towed. I guess we both missed the no-parking-after-three sign. 0.0 Fortunately, it turned out that the restaurant we intended to dine at was used to these shenanigans, and the civil servant at the impound lot was remarkably, well, civil, and so the ranch was saved.
The mysterious and lovely galeni then met us (via the magic of Twitter, we formed the world's smallest flash mob) at the BBQ place we had selected to feed MKK's need for MEAT. We ate MEAT (and in my case more cornbread than was strictly necessary) and then she took us for a tour of Stanley Park before delivering us safe and sound to the impound lot, where the car was reclaimed with no problems.
And so we came home.
Vancouver was not at all what I expected. I mean, in some ways I guess it's a typical Pacific Rim city (is there any such thing?)--multiethnic, cosmopolitan, multicultural, interlacing the sea. I was very impressed by the mountains (and Mount Baker on the way back--about the only thing I miss about Vegas is the mountains out my kitchen window, and the Volcano Roulette is proving very satisfying to me for this reason) but if I hadn't known I was in Canada, I would have kept mistaking the place for... Miami. Mostly, it was the condos, and the design of the condos. Of courses, Vancouver is Canada's San Diego, but it's weird to see the evidence of that in the balconies, open architecture, and walls of floor to ceiling glass.
What a nifty city. I would like to go back for longer.
This morning, I went for a run through Capitol Hill and up to Volunteer Park, where I joined the hordes of joggers and dog walkers and got some much-needed exercise. I'm enamored of the Capitol Hill architecture, with its peculiar combination of Pac Rim pagoda, Edwardian foursquare, and mock Tudor. (My favorite so far is the lavender and cream mock Tudor second story perched atop a purple brick first floor. Gorgeous.)
Today's plan is MKK's birthday luncheon, a tour of a chocolate factory, and then fun with scarlettina. Tomorrow, I hike. Friday, climb, various luncheon and tea plans, and then--alas!--I shall have to pass on the Fremont Zombie Walk because I am being called in to start doing what I was brought here to do. (Mwahahahaha.) I feel a little like a spy who's been activated: go to this wonderful place, spend time, get to know the people and the city... and then perhaps you will receive a call.