Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Seattle Road Trip: an exodus in three feet of snow

What do you do when you have planned a weekend road trip with your best friend and it snows three feet in your city?

Go anyway!

That wasn’t the advice I would give. That’s more of the chance I would take.
My friend and I had been planning a girls’ trip up to Seattle for months and when we finally nailed down the date and booked our airbnb, we were stoked. Only one little thing got in our way: Portland was hit by it’s biggest winter storm yet and we were buried in three feet of snow.

After much deliberation we decided to rent an SUV with 4-wheel drive and try to tough it out. This was not an easy task.

Step 1: To get to the car rental location, I had to walk one mile in the ice.

Step 2: I boarded the MAX (light rail) and road it for one hour to the rental location. MAX service had previously been suspended for days due to the weather, and they had only just started running the trains the day before. I had no guarantee that my train would not be derailed en route. Fortunately I made it.

light rail station

Step 3: The car rental agency came to pick me up in a vehicle with chains and drove me to the center.

Step 4: I get the most bad-ass car on the lot, and load up on insurance.

one of the better roads that was plowed

Step 5: I creep along the icy roads and pick my friend up at her place. After a scary could of miles on the war-torn freeway, we made it out of snow-country and it was smooth sailing for the rest of the trip.

at a rest stop on the way to Seattle

In Seattle we checked into an awesome airbnb in Capital Hill. Perfect for walking to the restaurants in the international district, and the bar in Capital Hill. Almost as soon as we arrived we treated ourselves to a spa experience at The Hot House, an all-women nude spa in the basement of a lesbian bar. I love Seattle.

our bad-ass airbnb

we made it!

For dinner, we ate the best meal of my life at a Syrian restaurant called Mamnoon.  We ordered:

Moushakal: muhammara, hummus, shamandar bi tahini, baba ganoush
Dolmeh: stuffed vine leaves, sweet and sour rice, parsley, shallots, labneh

arnabeit makli: fried cauliflower, tarrator, parsley

kefta: minced beef and lamb, pistachio, baharat, cherry tomatoes, laban bi khiar

And two desserts, one a tangy custard with pomegranate and homemade marshmellows, and the other an icecream with chocolate and meringue.

The next day, we had a food feast: Chinese hot pot, Hawaiian guava cake, Taiwanese bubble tea. Then walked through downtown, stopping off at Seattle awesome public library and sculpture garden, before visiting the highlight of the day: Chihuly Garden and Glass Museum. This was a very special museum for my friend who is a professional florist, and love’s Chihuly’s glass renderings of flowers.

The day we drove back to Portland, we prepared ourselves for another long icey drive in the snow by stopping off at Olympus Spa on the way. What was supposed to be a two-hour detour at the spa (again, another all-women nude space) ended up being 5+ hours with lunch. This spa was really incredible and you could easily spend the entire day here. One of the best parts was the Korean restaurant in the spa, which made delicious chijimi pancakes and soondobu. I took a photo of us  in the restaurant wearing our spa uniform: a robe and silly pink hair net.

After a long and scary drive, we made it back to snow-laden Portland a little warmer and happier than before we left.

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