What began as a plan to go on a short tip to Seattle for a Bible conference morphed into a three day weekend for us kids. We figured, since we were already so near to Tacoma, it was high time we gave that city a visit :) Kayleen should receive full credit for coming up with the idea in the first place, and then carefully researching it for us...even though she would not be going along.
After the conference, we headed down to Tacoma just in time for a delicious meal at the Indochine restaurant. Though the inside atmosphere would have been a cool experience, we were bumped to outdoor seating. It was prom night and there wasn't a place in that city that wasn't packed with dressed-up high-schoolers. Since most of our group from church was heading home the Tacoma route anyway, they decided to join us for a bite to eat. Between the five of us at our table, we managed to almost completely devour five large servings of Thai food.
We headed straightway to our lodgings for the night...the Hotel Murano. I was looking for a building that was bit more eye level with me :) ...not a 25 story tower that you had to crane your neck just to see the top of it :) Jonathon pointed it out to us in the distance declaring, "That's hotel Murano...the building with the big "M" on it. And that "M" does not stand for MacDonald's." ;)
We checked in and made our way to floor 19. Jonathon made the observation that this really only was a 24 story hotel since floor 13 was missing...which was lucky for us, 13 being bad luck :)
The sun was just beginning to set as we all unloaded our bags into both rooms. For some of us, the night had just begun. We decided to set out on an evening tour of the city. It was 75 degrees at 9:30 that night :) Between prom kids running around everywhere and a battalion ball going on somewhere in town, the place was quite lively! The shops along the street had kind of en eerie look to them at nighttime, looking almost like a scene from an "I Spy" book :)
Leisel commented on the fact that it reminded her a little bit of that scene in "It's a Wonderful Life" when the whole town is turned into Pottersville :) While walking along the street, a man invited us all in for some Kurdish dancing :) ...we passed up that opportunity ;)
We girls all noticed Jonathon was on high alert that night...which left us girls all remarking afterwards on what a fantastic brother we have :)
We had agreed upon eight as being our meeting time the next morning. But alas, the "enveloping" beds that Jonathon had told us were so spectacular, got the better of him. While all of us girls waited ready to go in the next room, Jonathon and Leisel were still sound asleep.
We come to find out that Leisel and Jonathon had stayed up till 1 in the morning watching a TV show, and then slept through their alarms the next morning. Charae began "starring daggers" at me for having woken her up so early when she could have slept in :) I tried to make up for it by making a pot of coffee for us as we sat back in bed to read our Bibles. But the coffee didn't help much as it was pretty much a cup of colored water ;)
Our first little expedition was to be across the glass bridge and a walk along the dock. It was lovely weather for it! Jonathon sighed and said, "Well, you can't beat this with a stick" :)
By the time we had made it back, we were ready for our second meal of the day...gelato ice creams sandwiched in-between two chocolate cookies :) I knew we had picked the perfect place for lunch too when the restaurant began playing "Only You" by the Platters :D
I don't know how many times we walked back and forth through the Tacoma town. We were getting to know those streets like the back of our hand. While waiting at one of the crossings, I remarked to Jonathon that when we were in Japan, we'd just cross on a red if there were no cars coming. Jonathon looked at me and with a corrective tone in his voice and said, "Well, we are not in Japan."...and then he preceded across the street...on a red.
Tacoma is a very beautiful mix of old buildings and brick walls, railroad tracks running through different areas of town and then the new towering city buildings and lovely glass work displayed throughout city. The old Union Station has been turned into the Federal courthouse now. The whole feel of the city was a mix between downtown Portland and Astoria.
When we stepped out of the car at Ruston Way, it had that same smell of the sea that you get at the ocean :)
There were also two military ships docked at Puget Sound that Leisel and I were just itching to hop aboard :)
Our last little trip was to the Point Defiance Park where we found ourselves quite overwhelmed by the things available to do there. We decided to pass up swimming with the sharks at the zoo as that was one of the many attractions at the Point Defiance Park. (I'm saving that till next time :) Instead, we took a walk through the rose garden and then proceeded to take a scenic drive down one of the trails.
We were all beginning to look a little wilted from so much direct sunlight. In all, Leisel informed us that we had walked 18,642 steps that day :)
We ended our day at the bubble tea shop back in Downtown Tacoma.
And so ended a wonderful weekend up in Tacoma with some of my favorite people in the world. Next time I find myself in the area, I think a little parasailing is in order :)
I cannot finish this blog post without giving a million thanks to Kayleen for her thoughtful care and preparation for our trip. For Jonathon who was so very sweet in driving his sisters around everywhere, treating them to the wonderful Indochine dinner that they ate, and always making sure that his sisters were having a good time.