Thursday, August 13, 2009

Chez Rula

8/10/09- 6 hours on the bike- Port Townsend, WA to Bremerton, WA to Seattle, WA and back to Bremerton

The route out of Port Townsend was super hilly and there were lots of busy streets. We stopped and got an oreo frappuccino at a little roadside spot and called Kelly. We'd initially planned on stopping at a state park before catching the ferry to see Kelly but we decided to motor through and meet her a day early. We called to try and see if she'd be able to pick us up at the ferry in Seattle but didn't get through so we just soldiered on. We stopped a little later and got some more blackberries which unfortunately led to some tummy trouble and consequent thorn scratches courtesy of our roadside bathroom- doh!



Some beautiful mountains came into view just as it started raining. Our route took us through some pretty sketchy parts of Bremerton to get to the Seattle ferry and we got a bit turned around (seems like we always pick the best places to get lost!) We survived and made it to the ferry just in time. Gave each other high fives, got seated, and called Kelly just as the ferry got moving. Her first words were, "You're on the ferry? Get off!!!!" Turns out we somehow got mixed up and she lives in Bremerton so the ferry was totally unnecessary. In fact, she was taking the ferry back from Seattle right as we left for Seattle. Our timing was perfect to to make everything turn out perfectly wrong. So Arik and I were wet and cold and stuck on an unnecessary hour ferry ride. Worse, right when we got there we had to ride off, go back through the entrance, and pay 14 bucks to get back on the same ferry to go home. Ah wondrous bureaucracy.

After 2 hours on the ferry, we finally got to see Kelly! She helped us load the bikes in the minivan and presented me with a jumbo box of nerds- she knows me too well! We stopped by Albertson's to get some pasta then headed to her casa. Her parents lived in the house for 2 years and have been renting it out until recently. Now Kelly gets to chill in it- it's pretty sweet- a nice view of the mountains and water. We ate our pasta, watched a movie, caught up a bit w/Kelly and turned in for an early night, happy to be with a pal and have a roof over our heads.

Arik's parents are keepin' track of how far we've come- here's Vancouver to Seattle :)

8/11/09- Seattle

Arik and I headed into the city, this time intentionally! It was a beautiful day- sunny and cool. People fed the seagulls from the ferry deck and the coast guard escorted us into the city.

Seattle skyline

We ate some falafel sandwiches at a falafel place- we'd missed those since we left Ann Arbor. Then we trekked to REI for some more fuel, a compass, and food.

A wondrous natural waterfall? Nope- just an outdoor feature at the REI flagship store

Went back down to the water and the Pike Place Market. We overpaid for some peanuts but got some tasty mini grapes and a delicious gigantic chocolate chip cookie from some street vendors. Then we walked down 1st street to Pioneer Square, which has really cool old brick buildings and a sweet bookstore: Elliott Bay Book Co. Arik and I each picked up a book and read for a while as we waited for the ferry back to Bremerton.

Pioneer Square

Kelly picked us up and we went to get some groceries for dinner. Had a tasty pasta and tofu dinner, talked a little about life with Kelly and her pals, watched Top Chef Masters with everyone, then went to bed.

8/12/09- Seattle part 2

We had a lazy morning- did some blogging and watched some UFC on the laptop. Went into the city with Kelly and her pal Jordan. We walked to the bus stop but had some time to kill so we went in search of a coffee place. Found a really cute one in an unlikely spot and chilled there for a little while.

Cool coffee shop

Then took the bus to a vegan pizza place called Pizza Pi close to the university. Had some tasty pizza and then started a long trek to a cool donut place called Mighty O Donuts. We power walked for 40 minutes to try to get there before they closed at 5. We made it at 4:30 and were stoked until the girl who worked there said they'd just run out of donuts. Nooooooo! "But we just walked 40 minutes to get these out of town vegans some donuts!," Kelly cried. The bid for sympathy worked: the girl went into the back and scrounged up an assortment of fresh mini donuts and one full sized one. They were super awesome and, the girl claimed, just the tip of the iceberg when it came to the tastiness of their donuts. I wish we could go back but we'll just have to save it for our next trip. We also got 2 raspberry lemonades (one on the house!) with bits of real raspberries at the bottom- yum.



Then we walked to Green Lake Park, a pretty cool neighborhood encircling Green Lake. It reminded us of a small White Rock Lake for the Dallasites reading. My feet were killing me (our bike shoes are not the best for long treks) so Arik and I sat down on a bench to chill while Kelly and Jordan went window shopping for a bit. We moved to a nice hill to lay in the sun and had fun people watching.

Cool bird at the lake

They came back and we all walked back to the donut place to catch the bus. It started raining right then, which was pretty perfect timing since we'd gotten all our walking done. The bus took us straight to the ferry- not too shabby. We had an hour to kill before the next ferry came so we went back to the bookstore. I started reading an awesome book called Born to Run and was really sad to have to put it down. Just couldn't justify droppin' the 25 bucks. Hopefully we'll find it at a used place or walmart somewhere along the way.

Kelly's roomie Bennett picked us up from the ferry and we headed home. Somehow during the 30 minute span while Bennett was gone picking us up, the puppy managed to consume an entire bag of trail mix and then deposit the poopy results all over the living room (where we've all been sleeping on the floor). Good ol' puppies- and the little gal only weighs like 5 pounds!. Arik and I retired to another room and watched some UFC fights, then nodded off.

8/13/09- Last day chillin' with Kelly in Bremerton

Today was an intentionally lazy day. Arik and I haven't really had the chance to just sit and unwind so we stayed an extra day w/Kelly to do just that. My blister from yesterday is healing up and we're both feeling much more well-rested and ready to get back on the road tomorrow- we miss it! We'll be staying at a state park tomorrow night and then hoteling it up for the 2 days after that. The hip thing to do whilst bike touring is to just find a secluded place on the side of the road to camp when campsites aren't available but we just aren't comfy with that idea yet. Maybe in the next month that'll change, but for now we'll baby ourselves a bit when there aren't established campsites around.

We should be in Oregon a week from tomorrow!

Us outside Kelly's house

With Kelly outside Chez Rula

Be well,

Arik and Mia