SEATTLE AGAIN: NOV 9, 2015 (SUN)

WEATHER
PORTLAND: RAIN
SEATTLE: SUNNY ON DAYTIME, RAIN AT NIGHT


…Yes, I went back to Seattle again. I had a nice time in Portland. I was satisfied with good foods there, and I enjoyed walking around the city including Pearl District with nice old buildings. But I felt like I looked around the city enough by 5:00 p.m. on November 8. Portland wasn’t really big, and the sightseeing area was limited. On the other hand, I felt like I didn’t enjoy Seattle enough and wanted to stay longer.

I was back to New York City from Seattle on the night of November 9. My original plan of the day was sightseeing in Portland until train departure time at 2:50 p.m. to Tukwila Station in WA, nearby SeaTac Airport, which was a stop before Seattle King Street Station. Instead, I decided to take an earlier train to Seattle at noon and enjoy there before going to the airport. I could change Amtrak ticket without an additional fee. Why didn’t I change to an earlier train? I’m a night person and needed to have some more fun in Portland at the last night…

After waking up on Sunday, I contacted my new friend in Seattle, who I met at a club a few days before, to check if he was available. He was available and decided to hang around.

There were two long lines for Seattle-bound train already when I arrived at Portland Union Station 45 minutes prior to the departure time. What surprised me was passengers needed to get a seat assignment at the gate when we showed tickets to conductors upon boarding. Seat assignment wasn’t computerized. Amtrak train conductors wrote car number and seat number on the ticket by a pen. Because my ticket was on iPhone app, one of the conductors wrote it down on a piece of paper. It was a very inefficient way, and they should print seat numbers on tickets like airlines. The result was they took 45 minutes for seat assignment, and passengers had to keep standing until seat assignment. It was my first time to get seat assignment by Amtrak. Even though all Amtrak trains were reserved, passengers could have any seat on other trains.

Classic Portland Union Station (above) and the ticket counter (below)

Two long lines to the gate at the station waiting area. They were still in the middle of lines.

“Cascade” train to Seattle was also different with other Amtrak trains. They used Spain’s Talgo train cars. Each car was very small with the lower floor. Wheels were located between the cars, not under the cars, and there was only one wheel on a side, not two as usual. Talgo looked fancy, but I liked regular Amtrak cars better. The Spanish train wasn’t much comfortable. Seats were smaller and harder than regular Amtrak, and I heard some dry noises from the wheels. I slept most of the time on board, anyway.

Amtrak “Cascade” Talgo train to Seattle

Goodbye, Oregon (left side above), and hello again to Washington (right side above). Concorde is seen on the left at Museum of Flight in Renton.

Surprisingly, Seattle was sunny when I arrived. It was supposed to be raining like Portland, but the sunny sky was better than rain for me.

I chatted with my friend at Stumptown Coffee Roasters in Capital Hill. Stumptown has stores in New York and Los Angeles now, but the origin is Portland. A cup of coffee was a little expensive but I could refill anytime. They brewed nice stronger coffee.

Time flew with good and fun conversation, and it was the time to head to the airport. I really wanted to stay in Seattle a little longer. I joked with my friend that if Alaska Airline looked for volunteers to give up seats for accommodation, meal, and hopefully money due to overbooking, I would definitely volunteer so I could go out to clubs again with him! Oh, boy…lol. 

I arrived at SeaTac Airport very early although I checked in by my iPhone already and didn’t have checked baggage. It was a good decision. The security line was very long because the airport closed some security checkpoints. Because Alaska Airlines had many red eye flights, late night would be busy. When I finished security, it was less than an hour before departure flight.


I found Seattle’s Anthony’s Seafood just in front of the security area. It would be a good last chance to take out Seattle’s seafood to my airplane. I could choose either salmon or cod for fish and chip, and I chose salmon. It was because I hadn’t eaten fried salmon before. The price wasn’t bad for airport food, only about $8.50.

Anthony’s “Salmon Fish and Chip”. I ate a piece already.

Sub Pop Store at SeaTac Airport. So grunge and so Seattle! Their T-shirts were manufactured by American Apparel.

When I reached the gate, it wasn’t only boarding had started but it was already my turn. That meant no more nightlife in Seattle (lmao). 

I opened up the box of Salmon Fish N’ Chips shortly after take-off in the heavy rain. There were 3 pieces of salmon and French fries. Salmons were lightly fried with butter sauce and enhanced the taste of fresh salmon. They were delicious even a little cooled off. Fried fish is sometimes deep-fried and heavy, but Anthony’s were just right for late supper. Oh, I should also buy a cup of chowder at the restaurant! I was glad I could enjoy Seattle taste until last.

 

I fell asleep soon after taking my meal, and I woke up just before arriving at JFK. It was about 5:00 a.m., but the city was still sleeping. When I saw the lights of Manhattan skyscrapers, I felt I was back to reality…unfortunately. I swore I would definitely be back to Seattle while looking at the spread of New York City lights. 

Flying over Brooklyn and Queens overlooking Manhattan, New York City at 5:00 a.m.

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    1. I know you’ll be crazy when you visit the store…as I was!
      Seattle has a very good music scene. For me, the current music scene is better and more rocking than the grange era.

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