I guess it’s about time I get this blog up & running again, since its sole purpose is to keep people up to date with my travel nurse adventures. And yes, I am finally in Seattle for my first contract. What a glorious feeling.
I left Indiana on January 25th, a Friday night. It wouldn’t be me if I didn’t drive through the night and all day the following day on a road trip. Fortunately, my mom was able to tag along and was there for communication and snacks… I don’t give up DJ duty, even driving. We briefly stopped at a hotel in No Where, Utah before getting up and continuing the rest of the drive to my new apartment. We arrived that Sunday evening, met my landlord, unpacked my loaded Jeep, and went out for a (Japanese) burger at Katsu before passing out in a state of complete exhaustion.
We were very lucky to find several great places to eat within our road trip. At each place, my mom proclaimed it as one of her favorites. We’ve always considered ourselves “foodies” and we thoroughly enjoy trying new places. I have set an unofficial goal to try as many places as possible while I am in Seattle, I’m thinking a goal of 100? *I’m already at 15 spots one week into my contract.* I consider trying new restaurants, coffee shops, and bars a big part of exploring each new city, so I have decided that I am going to start writing reviews of the places I go, because why not? You don’t have to read ’em if you don’t want to, just like you don’t have to read any of my other ramblings. But maybe I can be a source of advice if you ever need ideas for a vacation.
My mom and I arrived to Seattle a week and one day before my first day of orientation, and thus we had ample amount of time to be tourists, and that we did. We bought a CityPass, which includes tickets to 5 of Seattle’s biggest attractions. We were able to see the Space Needle observation deck during the day and at sunset, a harbor cruise, the aquarium, MoPop (the Museum of Pop culture,) and Chihuly glass museum. Two of the five attractions have two options you can chose from, so you could possibly visit the zoo or a science museum as well. If you want to be a tourist, I definitely recommend the pass, it’s cost efficient and gets you into some pretty cool places.
I’m not usually someone that has to visit the sky decks of tall buildings in cities, it’s generally crowded and not worth the price for such a short and uneventful visit. But I enjoy the Space Needle’s views more than say, Chicago’s Willis Tower. The weather was nice so we had a clear view of the city skyline, Mount Rainier, and the Puget Sound. I especially recommend watching a sunset from 605ft above the city & sound (on a clear day.) I can’t even begin to describe the beauty of it, the cover photo above doesn’t do it justice. The Space Needle is a trademark and the views are phenomenal, so it’s actually worth it in my opinion.
When I came to Seattle in high school, MoPop (back then known as the “Experience Music Project”) was memorable and one of the best experiences we had in Seattle. It was interactive and interesting, and of course I love music. Seattle and the surrounding area has been the home of many famous bands/artists like Alice in Chains, Jimi Hendrix, Pearl Jam, and Foo Fighters. Of course, Nirvana is one of the most well known and was key in the rise of the underground music scene of the Pacific Northwest. There’s a great Nirvana exhibit that gives you some background of their rise, and other exhibits featuring horror films, sci-fi, fantasy, and a sound lab where you can learn the basics of different instruments. MoPop was still fun, interactive, and enjoyable; but the exhibits weren’t as great as what I remember from high school.
Chihuly ended up being the biggest surprise from the CityPass. We wouldn’t have visited it otherwise, it was essentially just an added bonus to the price of the ticket. It was however, unexpectedly gorgeous. It’s an exhibition of glass artwork by Dale Chihuly. The pieces are so incredibly vivid and colorful, again pictures will never do them justice. They have a garden decorated with some of the glass pieces as well. I could throw in several more descriptive adjectives to describe the exhibition, but basically, just go see it if you have the chance.
My mom and I took the ferry one day to get over to the Olympic Peninsula, visiting the Twilight locations of Forks & Port Angeles. We also stopped at the Olympic National Park visitor’s center, but unfortunately much of the park would’ve required chains on my tires. So you can bet I’ll be back there later in my contract when the weather is more forgiving. It was my mom’s first time visiting the Pacific Ocean, providing a rocky, overcast beach much different than her usual tropical preference. She loved the excursion nonetheless. If you still enjoy Twilight (it’s a guilty pleasure of mine, I’m not going to lie) it’s cool to see La Push Beach and the overall setting of the saga. However, the “self guided Twilight tour” of Forks definitely isn’t accurate of the books’ depictions. The drive along the peninsula and through parts of Olympic National Park was the best part of the day.
We spent the rest of our time exploring downtown Seattle, the pier, and Capitol Hill near my apartment. We ate more than we could or should, we walked through numerous shops, and had an exciting night at an upscale Mexican bar (think Bakersfield or Nada for my Indianapolis folk.) We figured out the public transit and walked many miles throughout the week, just ask my mom and she’ll tell you all about Seattle’s hills. We explored the Public Market and bought fresh fish, veggies, and cheese for a delicious and instagram-worthy homemade dinner. And we explored coffee shop after coffee shop. It was a great first week to my new home, with perfect weather even showcasing the mythical Seattle sun for most of it. I am loving being a Seattleite, if only temporarily, and I can’t wait to show you guys more of this perfect carefree city.