Happy Anniversary to Us!

Saturday, May 31,2014

Happy 33rd Anniversary!

Happy Anniversary to us!  If you are a long-time follower of this blog then you are aware that when we travel we “celebrate” our anniversary at many of the places we stay.  That sometimes garners us special treatment or a bottle of champange, etc. However, today is our actual anniversary and we are so happy to spend it together in Seattle.

We have no set plans until dinner tonight. There is nowhere we have to be today and it is really nice to let the day unfold in front of us.

There is a nice fitness center here at the Fairmont and I plan to take full advantage.  When prompted, Rich exclaims that he “left my workout clothes in the car” (which is now valet parked).  I have done my research and reply that the Fairmont will supply complimentary workout wear to its clients!  Sorry, buddy – that excuse won’t fly.

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Look at those quads!  That's what biking will do for you.
Look at those quads! That’s what biking will do for you.

Breakfast is served in the ostentatious Georgian Room at the Fairmont.  This morning it is almost empty (probably because we came for breakfast around 11:00am).  We have a nice sunny table and enjoy our surroundings.

This dining room is over the top
This dining room is over the top

The buffet looks really nice but the menu appears more interesting.  Turns out that we both got hooked by the Razor Clams and Eggs. The clams were wonderful and almost as good as trout for breakfast.
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Our (my) first mission of the day is for me to replace my sunglasses. Before we went to breakfast I had put in a request with the concierge to research where there might be a place to purchase Maui Jims glasses. When we stop back by the desk, she has several options for us.  Armed with a map, we step out into a gorgeous day in downtown Seattle (where is the dark, rainy weather we were warned about?)
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Now the serious wandering can begin. We have both heard about Pike Place Market and believe we can probably spend a few hours there.  Boy, were we right on that one! This place is amazing.  There are vendors of all kinds selling all sorts of items: super fresh seafood, meats, beautiful produce and flowers.  We love it. Our one regret is that we aren’t a bit hungry – everything looks so good.

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The vegetables are absolutely gorgeous!
The vegetables are absolutely gorgeous!
They are making the cheese right in the window
They are making the cheese right in the window

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Piroshky, Prioshky where the smells are pumped directly out onto the street
Piroshky, Prioshky is a Russian bakery where the smells are pumped directly out onto the street
I really wanted one, but the line was HUGE!
I really wanted one, but the line was HUGE!
This is the Original Starbucks
This is the Original Starbucks
Rich does not understand why there is a line...
Rich does not understand why there is a line…

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Olive oil tasting
Olive oil tasting

I think we literally walked our legs off.  The day was so warm and sunny that people are out everywhere.

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The famous “Fish-throwing” seafood stall
Flowers everywhere
Flowers everywhere

If we had a place like this at home, I would be shopping there all the time.

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All the strolling has made us a bit peckish and we also want to get off our feet for awhile.  We are searching for a great people watching spot. When we see the Copacabana Bolivian Restaurant with outside balcony seating we know we have found the place.

Great view
Great view

IMG_1806We shared an order of mussels and clams that were just the thing. The next hour or so was spent playing people watching games like “Can you spot…”

The worst t-shirt?
The best hat?
People who look like their dogs?
The largest person eating the worst thing? (took a long time to get this one, but we finally did)

There was a young guy with a large camera who stood off to the side intently shooting photos.  We finally realized he was picking out oncoming pedestrians who looked “interesting” and taking stealth photos of them. We started to watching the oncoming crowd and could easily pick out his next “victims!”
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After lunch we walked down to the waterfront and sculpture park.  What a neat area – we loved it.

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I don't know what it is but take my picture with it!
I don’t know what it is but take my picture with it!

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Typewriter eraser
Typewriter eraser

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To get back to the Fairmont is all uphill.  I believe we walked at least 10 miles today (well, Rich calls that “blog miles”  It was probably 2 miles total)
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Time to get ready for our anniversary dinner.  The plan is to have a Happy Hour at the Fairmont and open the mysterious box before taking a taxi to our dinner reservation at Art of the Table.  Rich carries the box downstairs being careful not to let me see the label.  He is already thinking that I know what is inside – I don’t have a clue!

What is it?
What is it?

IMG_1840At this point Rich makes me turn around and not look.  I sneak a few photos over my shoulder.

stealth photo
stealth photo
I love this photo - what is that peeking out in the lower right corner?
I love this photo – what is that peeking out in the lower right corner?

This thing is wrapped like Fort Knox.  Finally, he is ready – time for the unveiling.  I can’t believe what I see!

YESSSSSS!
YESSSSSS! (Several of the staff come over to check it out)

WHAT???!!! I squeal with laughter and surprise.  What a perfect gift in so many ways.  How in the world did he manage this one?  Turns out he did not remember the name of the store in Jackson (me neither), but searched around online and found it.  He called the Fairmont to see if they would accept a package (of course we can). When he telephoned the store in Jackson he asked for the “squirrels in a canoe.”  The manager told him that they just sold the one they had but she had a “single.”  omg – That will not work. She told him that the taxidermist cannot keep up with this piece.  See, I knew it was cool! Anyway, she scrounged around and found one more.  Thank Heaven.  And thank you, Rich – you know I LOVE it.

Tonight we have opted to take a taxi to the restaurant.  The valet simply blows on a little whistle and a taxi magically appears.

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Hailing a taxi
Hailing a taxi

We have had this reservation at Art of the Table for several weeks.  The place is tiny and they have 5 seats at the “view the kitchen” bar.  That’s exactly where we have requested to be. We are greeted at the door and shown to the tiny bar where the bartender – Mitch – offers to mix us a drink.  Champagne/Ginger/Rum cocktail for me, please.  Rich asks for Mitch to mix him something special. We know we are in the right place when Mitch asks the hostess to go in the back and get him a “large” ice cube.  The drink was perfect – Uncle Val’s Gin, Chartreuse, Chili Bitters and who knows what else?

The master at work
The master at work
yes.
yes.
The other master at work
The other master at work

We order the tasting menu and one wine pairing (we will share). Then we sit back and watch the action in the kitchen.  It is one of the calmest kitchens we have ever witnessed.  These guys are pros. The food is super creative and delicious.  The staff are relaxed, fun and professional at the same time.

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the octo
the octo

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We totally close up the place – haven’t done that in a while.  This has been a wonderful celebration.  Maybe we should celebrate our anniversary more often…

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4 thoughts on “Happy Anniversary to Us!

  1. OMG the squirrels! What a perfect reminder of a great trip! Art of the Table looked way cool. Looks like you had a great real anniversary 🙂

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