Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The Hip Strikes Again!

Lee's dad (we'll call him L3) invited Lee to join him on a mountaineering trek up Mount Rainier in Washington state.  Mt. Rainier is 14,411 feet high and perfect for training for other major mountains because of the variable weather, glacier and snow fields, and terrain difficulties.

Lee's collage of Mount Rainier
This crazy mountain thing started 3 years ago when one of L3's friends invited him and Lee to trek to base camp of Everest.  Everest, people!!!  (Yeah, when I first met Lee, his little adventurous spirit was quite attractive!)

After helping  the boys situate all their gear for their 35-lb packs and getting them settled in with the trekking company, my mother-in-law, Mom K, and I were off to make it a girls' vacation in Seattle while the boys were playing on the mountain. Wahoo!  The mice will play when the cat is away!

And did we play!  We went to the Pacific Science Center...

...Experience Music and the Science Fiction Museum...

...The Seattle Aquarium and The Seattle Art Museum (SAM)...

...The Space Needle (Lunch was awesome at the Sky City Restaurant.  I know, I know--you think that I'm just saying that because the restaurant rotates giving you a 360 degree view of the city while you eat. Okay, that's partially it. I had the Crab Melt--melted dill Havarti cheese on dungeness crab cakes, layered atop sliced tomatoes and a circle of buttery toast.  It was rich.  Almost too much.  Almost.

Mom K's treat was during dessert--lemon basil sorbet served in the lunar dish.  So refreshing and surprising!)...

...The Glass Blowing House and Waterfall Garden in Pioneer Square...

Who knew rooms went for so cheap in Seattle!
...and my favorite--Pike's Market!!  Yay!  Can I tell you how much I love that place?  Love love that place!  I had to take loads of pictures--I'm Asian!

Me with the Pig (and the famous fish throwers in the background)!

It was visually stimulating, of course.  But I wish you could hear the local street musician over the chatter of the tourists, punctuated by the yells of the fish throwers.  And I wish you could smell all the wonderful smells--fresh baked Chinese buns, fruit so perfectly ripe its sweetness hung in the air, and the saltiness of the seafood ready to fly.  And this place has Costco on any Saturday beat--samples, samples samples!  It was oh-so-lovely!

We finally headed back to find our men at Mount Rainier. When we arrived back at the lodge, I was surprised to find Lee there already. I was so excited to see him--I missed him while in Seattle, because I knew he would love it.

Lee about half way up Mt. Rainier.  No fun tickets left!
I come to find out that Lee didn't make it all the way to the top because of his hip.  (For those of you who have never heard Lee's hip story, ask him to tell it to you sometime.  It's quite the story! In short, he broke his hip because he was growing too fast and had to have a couple of titanium screws put in.)  He was about 5 hours into the hike and he had used up all his "fun tickets".  Bumbershoot! Lee doesn't really know why his hip was acting up at that time, but he was wise enough to come down.

L3 summit-ed and we had a good rest of the trip driving home.

And don't you fret, dear readers, Lee will soon be seeing an orthopod, eventually get back on Rainier, and definitely will see Seattle with me!


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