Simple Sunday – Traveler’s Log

The dogs were boarded and the neighbors had instructions on cat and plant care. It was time to go.

Why can’t I go with you?

We had a late afternoon flight and decided to take the shuttle bus to the island of my childhood home instead of renting a car.

Ferry heading to the mainland as we go the opposite direction.

We got in late, the boys opting to head to bed after greeting their grandma and plunking their suitcases down in their room. The rest of us stayed up talking. Due to COVID, it had been almost two years since we had seen my mom.

The next day we stayed island-side, strolling around the downtown and reminiscing on previous visits.

View of the buildings on Main Street, taken from the pier jutting off the wharf. It was low tide and overcast.

I breathed deeply of the salty air and absorbed the seagull sounds and lapping water.

It was wonderful to be together again.

As I always do when visiting my mom, I found myself drawn to the three and a half acres surrounding my childhood home, a space that still holds for me imaginary lands and a lifetime of memories.

The deer, startled by my appearance, fled the apple orchard into the deeper grasses of the pasture, crossing in front of what once was the milking barn. The evergreens still ever watchful.

I took so many pictures: decaying wooden fence posts, many colored grasses, gnarled trees – some wild and some more domesticated having been my former climbing trees, producing fruit for our family as well.

Pieces of my childhood.

The next day we headed into Seattle. I had discovered that my mom had never been to the top of the Space Needle and so that, among other adventures, awaited.

The octopus at the Seattle Aquarium.

I took way too many pictures of fish, my favorite one being the serious, long-nosed fellow with the intelligent stare.

It was hard to look away.

At risk of being mocked for my many fish pictures, I snapped one of my mom with the boys.

Love those smiles!

I have never lived in Seattle, but have visited enough that I have mostly stopped taking pictures of the iconic places. The cityscape and flowers from our wander about of Pike’s Place is all you get.

Our day ended back at the hotel where Carter checked out the pool briefly before we all got some shuteye.

Views from our hotel: day vs evening.

The next day, after breakfast, we went up the Space Needle. The clouds had cleared and we had a beautiful view all around. The glass floored floor, which rotates a full rotation every 45 minutes, was trippy.

Carter took a time-lapse video over about 20 minutes where the cars below quickly jerked to stops and starts and the gold, oddly shaped elevators tiptoed up and down the spine of the Space Needle. The rushing forward of time.

Next we headed to Ballard to do a self-guided tour of the Ballard Locks. We had done the full harbor tour that included the locks in previous years, so we enjoyed walking the park and viewing it from the ground. The museum was interesting as well.

Lonely Locks. We were lucky to see boats use the locks coming from both directions.

The rest of our trip we spent on the island allowing the slowness of island time to wash over us. One evening Husband and I drove the short distance to Ebey’s Landing to watch the fog roll and the sun set.

This my preferred childhood beach to escape to when I needed time to reflect and regroup.

We went back the next day for a beach walk that took us around the jutting out of the land, to the salty lagoon hidden behind.

In the daytime, the fog only a memory.

No need to go far, just down the road, for picturesque views.

The boys enjoyed picking edible treasures from my mom’s garden – peas, carrots, currents, blueberries – just coming on.

Cody picking sugar peas.

And then, just like that, it was time to go. Husband and I headed back to Phoenix while the boys, lucky them, stayed on an extra week to have special time with their grandma.

Waiting for the ferry to take us back to the mainland.

The shuttle got us to the airport well before our flight so Husband and I partook in an expensive drink or two.

Beer with travel masks.

We have been back for several days. The boys check in with phone calls and texts.

James, very glad to have me home.

The pets are happy to have us back, but they know something is missing. It is quiet without the boys. Too quiet.

I am so glad to have been able to travel, to visit my mom and share time with her. I can’t wait to do it again.

About Shoes

I am an elementary school teacher, a former microbiologist, a mom to a herd of two boys, and a grilled cheese sandwich and beer connoisseur.
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9 Responses to Simple Sunday – Traveler’s Log

  1. ckennedy says:

    What a lovely trip! We live 30 minutes from Seattle, but have not visited since before the pandemic–but we will be visiting more often because Alex will be attending UW:) So, we’ll take the bus and will whisk him away to brunch on the weekends. We definitely want to see the aquarium again. Cheers!

    • Shoes says:

      Brunch on the weekends in Seattle sounds wonderful. Glad Alex will attend UW (I am a Coug fan myself, however) so you have an excuse to do so.

  2. Rivergirl says:

    Looks like a wonderful trip. My husband was in Seattle a few years ago on business and did many of the same things. He loved it. Even had dinner at the top of the space needle restaurant… one person, $150. Yikes.
    That first photo of James…. Mom! Don’t leave me! I just love his expressive face.

    • Shoes says:

      We enjoy the touristy things in Seattle along with just being in the busy city. The Space Needle restaurant was not open, otherwise we may have splurged for lunch.
      Husband and I got home at midnight and two of our three cats were waiting for us at the door. James showed up a couple minutes later, sleepy eyed. He does not like to be woken up.

  3. What a lovely trip! I would totally take the island over the city, but I’d have to at least visit the city. That glass floor was spiking my fear of heights just from the picture! And of course James loves you so much–you have the same hair color. He must think you’re his mommy. 🙂

    • Shoes says:

      It was so nice to be back in WA and with my mom again. It is fun to visit the city, but the island is my jam. I could spend all day wandering the beach and collecting rocks and memories.
      James has been like Velcro since we got home. It is both sad and sweet.

  4. That must have been so nice to be finally able to visit your mom. I’ve never been to Seattle before, but I’d love to visit someday. Sounds like you and your family had a wonderful trip. P.S. the first picture of your cat is hilarious!!

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