Day 4 – Seattle

August 4, 2014: Today I’m on my own and I decided to go into Seattle.

I should start by mentioning I’m in the Best Western Plus Tacoma Dome Hotel. This is pretty conveniently located for public transportation. The Tacoma Link light rail is just like the SunLink that recently opened in Tucson, except that it’s free and a lot faster. The Tacoma Link has just six stops but goes to some of the high points for visitors, like Union Station, the Museum of Glass and the Tacoma Art Museum.
Tacoma Link trolley
One of the big bus stations is close to the Tacoma Dome light rail station. There’s also some kind of train station close by. I caught bus 594 into Seattle, a nonstop ride there that took about an hour. I got out at 4th and Pike and was surprised by the park-like atmosphere and many activities going on there.
Park plaza at 4th and Pike, Seattle
I went looking for the William Traver Gallery, supposed to have lots of high-end glass. I didn’t think about today’s being Monday, and, of course, the gallery was closed.

Around the corner was the gallery Vetri. It offered a lot of nice things, even a piece I liked a lot and could have afforded.

After that, I wandered off to Pike Place Market, which is huge, bustling and packed, both with tourists and stands. You want fresh fish?
One of the many fish possibilities at the Pike Place Market
Fresh fresh fruits and veggies or flowers?
Flower stand
That’s the place, although the fruits and veggies didn’t seem too cheap.

It was really warm. I found some postcards, 5 for $1.10. The young woman at the stand said people get cranky in the warm weather. When I said I was from Tucson, she asked me to take the hot weather home with me….

Remembering suggestions from my Sonoran Glass School instructor, I found the Seattle Glassblowing Studio, which is also a sales outlet for glass blowing supplies. The place has a nice, fairly large gallery, the sign was hard to overlook:
Seattle Glassblowing sign
So were the pieces outside the gallery:
Outside Seattle Glassblowing
It also has a very cool, very glass restroom…
Basin and counter in restroom of Seattle Glassblowing

Then it was off to find a bus back to Tacoma. I knew where I’d gotten off, but I wasn’t sure about getting back on. Through dumb luck, I found the right place.

It was another hour back to Tacoma. Once there and fading fast from lack of food and water, I went across the street from the bus to Freighthouse Square and tried out the Indian express restaurant.

Since there was still time, I took off for Union Station to get photos of the Chihuly pieces there. It’s now the Courthouse Building, so it was closed Saturday when I was out and about. One window has what look like orange poppies:

Chihuly at Union Station - 1
In the middle is a huge hanging piece by Chihuly:
Union Station - Chihuly 2
On another side was a mosaic of blown glass pieces:
Mosaic of Chihuly pieces
A closeup is pretty impressive:
Closeup of "mosaic" piece
And finally, the long pieces that I’ve seen many times before:
More Chihuly at Union Station

All in all, a good day, though I was pretty overwhelmed by Seattle. It’s a big, unfamiliar city. A few more visits, and it will be fine.

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