I left Portland on July 5 in the late afternoon/early evening. The train ride to Seattle, my next stop, was relatively short, as would be my time in the city of Seattle. That did not make the time any less memorable.
There were some things that I absolutely had to do in Seattle, the first of which was to visit The Space Needle. None of the pictures I took with my disposable camera do justice to the sight of that structure within the Seattle skyline. Suffice to say that I set out to cross that site off my list on the morning of Sunday, July 6.
As I have mentioned repeatedly, I was a poor student. There were things that sounded fascinating, which I could not afford. I couldn't afford to eat at the revolving restaurant. But I could have a soda, and take in the experience.
Of note, on the same trip, I encountered a precocious 12 year-old boy on the train. He was traveling alone at age 12, I was doing it for the first time at age 25/26. He encouraged me, saying he saw me returning to Seattle to enjoy a meal at the revolving restaurant, with a cell phone and a three-piece suit.
I returned to Seattle many times, finally having that meal in 2001, when I interviewed for a psychology internship. I had neither the cell phone, nor the three-piece suit, but I did enjoy taking in the beauty of the city of Seattle as I enjoyed my meal.
The other experience I needed to have was to attend a Mariners game at the now defunct Kingdome:
The Kingdome holds the distinction of being my least favorite of the approximately 30 major league stadiums I have visited. Visiting Safeco field two years later, there was a sense of going from an apartment that was habitable -- but not much else -- to the Penthouse.
I also recall taking an Aussie from the hostel to the game with me, and hyping up the experience of seeing Ken Griffey, Jr. play. Of course, Griffey had an off-day at the plate, with two strikeouts and two groundouts, and my words did not come alive for the Aussie. Griffey did have a noteable 8-5 putout from Centerfield, however, in the Mariners' blowout loss.
Other notable moments included seeing, by chance, a statue of Jimi Hendrix:
Not pictured are my pleasant visit to the Museum of Flight, and the entertaining trips to the game center at the Univeristy, as well as the entertainment at the Pacific Science Center, near the Space needle and Key Arena (I would watch my beloved Knicks play a game there in 2005). Our hostel host also took a number of us to see the home of the late Kurt Cobain.
This was my first, but by no means my last trip to Seattle. I returned in 1999, as I alluded to earlier, for a Mariners' game at the new stadium. I explored the city more in 2001, when I applied to two internship sites in the area. And I moved to University Place, right outside Tacoma, in 2004, living there until 2006 -- I had multiple opportunities to enjoy the city of Seattle. In 1997, I had to be creative, and find entertainment that fit my limited means. The city provided many opportunities for me to do just that, in my last stop before I left the country -- for Vancouver, British Columbia.