With Ben at work, I had three days to explore on my own. The first day the rain mercifully held off and I was able to spend most of the day outdoors exploring the waterfront, Pike's Place and the Space Needle.
|The newest addition to the waterfront, built in 2012.|
|Pike's Place sign from the back.|
It's been a long time since I traveled by myself. In Argentina, Ben and I never split up while traveling (we did while in Buenos Aires, but we considered that our home). After I'd walked the waterfront and explored Pike's Place, I wasn't sure what to do. If Ben had been there, I might have spent more time tasting the free food at Pike's Place, but that wasn't nearly as much fun without someone to share it with. Instead, I decided to wander aimlessly.
Not far from Pike's Place, I found a plaza with olive oil and wine tastings. I cook with olive and vinegar basically every day but I've never really understood the fuss over fancy olive oil. Indeed, when I first tried the olive oils at the tasting, it was no more exciting than if I had poured myself little bowls of olive oil at home. Fortunately I asked for help and discovered the store's real secret: their olive oils and balsamic vinegars are infused with all sorts of flavors. Garlic, tangerine, blood orange, herbs de provence, lime, cinnamon pear and so on. The secret is in how you pair the two. I brought Ben back on Saturday and we brought home a garlic olive oil, an herbs de provence olive oil and a tangerine balsamic.
Inspired by my success at the olive oil tasting, I decided to give the wine tasting across the way a chance. I figured I could learn more about Washington wines, about which I know little. In Sonoma, a wine tasting costs between $5-$15 and usually buys you five one-ounce pours (though some places are more generous). You're often in and out in about 20 minutes. At this Seattle winery, each pour was at least two and maybe three ounces. The other patrons were basically treating the winery as a bar, sitting for at least an hour chatting with friends. Not wanting to get drunk at a wine tasting (tasting!) by myself, I sipped slowly and enjoyed my book. The wine wasn't that good and the pourer wasn't interested in chatting, but it just reminded me of the number one rule of traveling alone: never go anywhere without a good book (in this case, "The Orphan Master's Son").
937 feet. Having checked off several major attractions, I headed back to our gloriously comfortable hotel.
|Seattle sunset, captured by Ben.|