Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Sleeping and Celebrating in Seattle

I'm hoping Annie is not sleepless this morning and that she's snoozing away.   She wanted to sleep in on her birthday. 

She's 32 today, and we began the celebration last night with dinner at Jak's in West Seattle.  Annie wanted steak, so we went there and bypassed the steaks for tender, mouth-watering prime rib and the accessories.

We topped it off with a fresh-out-of-the-oven giant chocolate chip cookie, baked in a mini-cast-iron frying pan.  The glob of vanilla ice cream, melting over the top and additional chocolate syrup made for a disgusting but delectable dessert.

I'm now drinking my latte, made from French roast coffee, purchased from Irwin's Neighborhood Bakery and Cafe.  The Nestles with marshmallows and the mocha cappuccino came from Yoke's and Wal-Mart.  Have to combine the sophisticated with hometown.

Besides their pleasant manager, Irwin's at Hydro House features all kinds of breakfast baked goods, sandwiches, chicken pot pie, quiche and their specialty marionberry pie "with luscious butter crust, a Seattle legend."  You can get a piece of pie for $4 and add a dollar for the a la mode.

I discovered Irwin's on my morning walk.  I also discovered, unlike on my past visits to Seattle, how much later the day breaks here.  Guess those 350 miles make a difference in the time zone.
Annie's birthday will be spent at Bainbridge Island and Quest Field.

We're taking the car on the ferry over to the island later this morning.  I've never been to Bainbridge, so this will be a treat.  We'll probably explore and have lunch there before coming back to get revved up for the Sounders Match tonight.  

A Sounders Match is a happening, I'm told, and I'm here to take it all in.  The happenings should make a fun column for The River Journal.  Annie's disappointed that this match is not one of the major contests so the stands probably won't be full, except for the diehards, of which she is one.

I loved the drive over here yesterday and look forward to taking my time on the drive back tomorrow.  Having never driven to Seattle in the fall, I was blown away with the stunning scenes from Ellensberg to the city.  Autumn leaves set amidst greenish blue evergreens and jagged peaks make for breath-taking beauty.

And the gold along the rivers ain't bad either.

Just saw some crew paddlers heading across the calm waters of Lake Union.  Must be the morning practice for U-Dub.  I also walked past lots of lit-up lab windows at the Fred Hutchinson complex here near the lake.

I wondered if I'd be so lucky to bump into one of my former students Dr. Barry Stoddard who has his own lab within the complex.  We connected a few years ago via cyberspace, but it would be nice to see him in person.  Barry lived down in Vedelwood while he attended Sandpoint High School as a stand-out student.

His road has taken him to some wonderful success since that time in the 1980s.

Well, I guess that's enough blabber on this special birthday morning for Annie.  Every Oct. 19, I love to reflect on the morning when I told Bill we'd better take Willie and the crib out to Marilyn Chambers cuz I thought it was "almost time."  

So, we did.  Then, we calmly drove to the hospital.  When I was sitting in the waiting room, a nurse from OB came down to get me.  She looked all around and then asked in disbelief, "Are you the one?"

"Yes," I said.  Then we went to a room where they checked my progress and said to stick around town.  

So, we went to Connie's where Bill enjoyed breakfast as I dealt with more frequent labor pains.  As we walked out, we saw Betsy and Dick Foster.

"Have you had the baby?" Betsy asked.

"No, but I'm headed over to the hospital right now," I answered.

Betsy's jaw dropped in disbelief.

About two hours later, our "Precious" was born.  And a day or so later, we drove her home while John Denver sang, "Sunshine" on KSPT-Radio 1400.   From that point on, I called that "Annie's Song."

And, today,  32 years later, it looks like our Precious, Miss Annie Love of Sandpoint, Idaho, now Seattle, is gonna have some "sunshine on her shoulders."  

And, her proud mom is planning to enjoy every minute of  her special day. 

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