Featured photo for Seattle, WA

Seattle, WA

“Seattle doesn’t get that much rain.” I’ve read that on a number of websites that say there are at least 40 cities in the U.S. that get more precipitation than the Emerald City does. The implication, then, is that while Seattle has an unusual number of grey, overcast days, it mostly just drizzles there. Most residents, I’ve heard, don’t even bother to use umbrellas.

But I wouldn’t call the smattering of raindrops pelting my head shortly after landing at SeaTac a “drizzle.” And since the rain persisted well through the evening after I had lunch (Vietnamese cuisine) with Mehdi and a tour of his workplace, one of my first stops afterward was into a Walgreens to purchase my first umbrella in over eight years.

It was well worth it, keeping me dry during the 1.2-mile walk to the Space Needle from downtown. Then I ascended this marvelous World Fair monument to enjoy resplendent panoramic views of the city. If I had come here with anyone, I would have loved to just linger over a glass of wine. As it was, I stayed here for about 1.5 hours, enjoying the vistas and learning about the city through the educational table-sized touchscreens located on the observation level.

In addition to finally going up the Space Needle—the iconic structure that was first brought to my attention by Jessica Alba’s role as Max in the early 2000s TV show Dark Angel (she’d sit on top of its roof to ponder)—I got to do the following:

  • Have dinner with Mehdi at a local pub and listen to live music the first night.
  • Visit the Lemay Car Museum in Tacoma.
  • Go to the Microsoft Store (where I got to touch the Microsoft Surface which I have been coveting for some time now) and the adjacent Apple Store in University Village.
  • Rock climb with Mehdi at Vertical World.
  • Do a day trip to Victoria on Vancouver Island (part of Canada).
  • Run the Reindeer Marathon in Rochester, WA (about 70 miles south of Seattle).

So despite the rain, it was a very enjoyable trip. And the sun and blue sky did make a cameo while I was driving down to the Lemay Museum in a little Fiat 500 rental car.

It was raining in downtown Seattle.
The Space Needle as seen from Fifth Street.
The Space Needle seen through the rails of the monorail.
Lighted tree outside the Space Needle.
The view of Seattle to the South from the Space Needle.
Me, up in the Space Needle.
Mehdi inside the Paragon Restaurant & Bar in the Queen Anne district, where we had dinner and listened to live music.
My Fiat 500 rental car in the Magnolia district of Seattle.
The Microsoft Store at University Village.
An Asus VivoBook X202E with its Macbook-like materials and construction, touch screen and attractive $499 price tag.
The Microsoft Surface with a red touch cover.
Nokia Lumia 920: possibly my next phone to replace my Lumia 900.
The Apple Store across the parking lot.
Mehdi climbing inside Vertical World in the Queen Anne district.
Nice climbing figure on the wall.
One of the climbs we did included this 5.10b called "Open wide froggy."
Mehdi having some pho for the first time at New Saigon Restaurant in downtown Seattle.