A Seattle Whirlwind

    
Wow! What a crazy first few days out here in the West! It was nice to have my parents out here for a few days while I got settled and adjusted to this new life and new home. While we made many, MANY trips to Ikea and Target (see photo below), we also had some time to do some exploring and sightseeing around the city.

 

So many Ikea boxes!

 
Of course, we hit up some local coffee shops as an energy source to fuel our moving-packed days. These, naturally, did not disappoint. A personal favorite of ours, The Ugly Mug Cafe (Here’s a review of it on SeattleCoffeeScene.com), is located only a few minutes from my apartment in the University District. This coffee shop provided all of the charm and comfort I look for in a coffee shop, along with a damn good cup of coffee. I ordered a Mexican Mocha, which was arguably the best mocha I’ve ever tasted: chocolate and espresso flavors, with a little cinnamon kick. It provided the perfect defense for a slightly chilly Seattle morning. Plus, the atmosphere of the coffee shop was exceptionally welcoming and shabby chic without being stuffy; this served as an excellent retreat from the bustling life in the U-District. I can definitely see myself sitting in this little coffee shop reading a book or working on schoolwork and sipping on a delicious espresso beverage.

 

Enjoying my Mexican mocha.

  

A sampling of The Ugly Mug’s atmosphere.

 When we weren’t drinking coffee or carrying boxes or bags upstairs to my apartment, we also went downtown to see the sights and do some quintessentially Seattle touristy things. We, of course, paid a visit to Pike Place Market to check out the local food and wares for sale at this daily market. Only closed on Thanksgiving and Christmas and open since 1907, this market is essentially a Seattle institution, a place where locals go to get their produce and fish and also where tourists flock to people watch and buy local goods. While the food sections of the Market are great, I am always particularly captivated by the crafts sections–there are always truly remarkable things to peruse and purchase. I plan to return to wander around more, especially once I figure out how to avoid the crowds!

 

The Iconic Pikes Place Market sign.

  

A colorful flower stand in the market.

  

The quirky gum wall outside the market. Many people come here to affix their chewing gum of choice to the wall. Certainly an interesting part of the local character!

  

This guy was playing violin on the street to raise money for his family’s mission trip to the Philleppines. We were very impressed with his talent and his discipline. He stood so still and played his violin without fear, despite being surrounded by hundreds of people.

 We also ate at some wonderful restaurants. I will, of course, go into more details later as I would like to dedicate entire posts to what I’ve been eating and drinking, but I must tell you, the food culture here is great. Just about everywhere you look is a restaurant fully of culinary achievement. I am certain that you could come to Seattle and do nothing but eat and leave completely satisfied. I, myself, have eaten a lot of salmon since I have been here–it is one of my favorite foods and is much more readily available in the PNW than it was in Ohio–and it has been nothing but fantastic!

It was absolutely wonderful to have my parents here in Seattle with me. Neither of them had ever been to the area and it was fun to see them enjoy this wonderful city. I cannot wait for them to return to visit!

x.M

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