Thursday, December 11, 2008

Seattle or bust

Last Friday I headed to Seattle for a four-day trip to visit friends, buy a lot of yarn and drink copious amounts of caffeine. Seattle is a great place to visit, I couldn't stop staring at the mountains and all the trees and the Puget Sound, it's a totally different landscape than Western Tennessee, where I've spent my entire life. I went back and forth a few times on where I was going to stay, because I didn't want to spend a ton on a hotel room I almost stayed outside of the city. After some input from my friends I made reservations at the Inn at Queen Anne, located in the Queen Anne area of Seattle. The hotel wasn't really fancy but it closely resembled a Midtown Memphis apartment (it had a radiator and everything!). There was restaurants and book stores and grocery stores and coffee shops all within walking distance. A downside was that the parking lot was extra and it was a couple of blocks from the hotel itself, no big deal though.There were so many things I wanted to do but I didn't get to some of them because it was really a whirlwind trip. Yarn stores and the Urban Craft Uprising were the main things I wanted to do and everything else was cake. I was lucky to have my friend know where things were because I wouldn't have made it to half of the yarn stores if she hadn't have been there to navigate.

In no particular order, these are the yarn stores I hit:

That may sound like a lot of yarn stores but there were lots more I didn't make it to. Everyone was super nice and helpful too. This is my pile-o-yarn from shopping, I got Madeline Tosh worsted, Fleece Artist Trailsock, Dream in Color Smooshy, Cascade 220, Louet Gems, Berroco Comfort, Knit One Crochet Two Recycled Cotton and Berroco Ultra Alpaca. I couldn't stop fondling all the yarny goodness. I also got a skein of this yarn from the Blonde Chicken at Urban Craft Uprising, it has the sheen of silk and it's made from banana fiber, how cool is that? My skein is more of a silver gray though.
Eating lots of things I shouldn't have was something I did quiet well too. There was mini-brioche filled with Nutella, huge cake donuts, latte's, mocha's, Indian food, cider roasted chicken and my personal favorite, the Caramelized Banana Brioche French Toast at the Volunteer Park Cafe. Drool. Everything on that breakfast menu was something I wanted to eat. There was much shopping at a few other non-yarn places too, I went to H&M, Urban Outfitters, Archie McPhee's (where I bought Doug a figurine of the 'Patron Saint of Bacon') and Monkey Love Rubber Stamps.
Riding the ferry was also a completely new experience, once I figured out the procedure I really enjoyed it. I took the ferry from Seattle to Bainbridge Island and from Edmonds to Kingston. Bainbridge Island was perfectly enchanting, lots of quaint little shops and the views are so pretty. Bainbridge is where Churchmouse Yarn was and it is the most beautiful yarn store I've even seen. Plus they had BMFA Socks that Rock, which I have never seen in person. (I didn't buy any though because they didn't have the colorway I wanted).
I also took what I'm calling a Fangirl Mini-Tour of DOOOM to Port Angeles/Forks/La Push, all of Twilight fame, which deserves it's own post, possibly tomorrow.

There were a few things I didn't know about Seattle:

1) There is NO place to park, ever. Every parking lot has huge signs for towing companies. So apparently if you own either a towing company or a parking lot in Seattle or anywhere near Seattle you can make a killing.

2) There are huge crows all over the city and they are not the least bit phased by humans. They look like they could peck your eyes out. And they might if you anger them.

3) I knew coffee was big in Seattle (well duh) but I didn't realize how big. There are these little espresso stands EVERYWHERE, even well out of the Seattle metro area. Those folks really dig their caffeine (which is cool because so do I).

4) Rosemary and lavender grow into massive shrubs everywhere there. I can't even count how many times I saw ginormous rosemary plants.

It was such a great trip and I'm absolutely smitten with the Pacific Northwest. Now I can't wait to visit Portland, which I will henceforth be referring to as "the Promised Land" (only because that's what the barista at High Point calls it).

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