Sunday, March 20, 2011

Polar Dip, Opera, Wooden Boats

On my 30 Before 30 list I had written that I wanted to see a live opera. For Christmas this year my parents were kind enough to get me opera tickets for January! And Robb's Christmas present to me was to make a whole weekend out of the event. He made hotel and dinner reservations so we could have a great night out in Seattle.

The weekend started with with us getting up early on Saturday and heading to Alki Beach in West Seattle. My running club were having their annual run and polar dip, followed by a potluck brunch. If you'll recall, I did my first polar dip last year and was the only girl to participate. This year, there were a lot more of us running into the cold water. I was a little uncomfortable doing so this year because the rumor was Puget Sound was very polluted because of all the rain in the previous weeks and the run-off/pollution from the roads. But, right before I jumped, a flock of birds decided to take off and poop all around me and on me. I must say, most of the poop was around me, but a lot of poop was on me. That sealed my fate of running into the freezing Puget Sounds. 
Soaking wet after the plunge!
After the run, plunge, and breakfast, Robb and I headed to our hotel for an early check-in. We had a great view of the Space Needle. We took a nap and then started getting ready for our night on the town! Originally Robb had made reservations at an Italian restaurant, Il Bistro. He had made the reservations weeks in advance and had even secretly made plans for a private booth, rose petals on the table, and champagne. A week before our night out Robb got a call from the manager saying that Il Bistro was actually closed and he was so sorry that somehow reservations had been made. The manager was apologetic and offered to help us make reservations at another restaurant. We finally decided on 94 Stewart. We walked to the restaurant from our hotel, dressed in our finest, and found that the manager at Il Bistro had arranged for rose petals, champagne, and privacy at 94 Stewart (and he paid for those amenities to make up for their mistake,) It was a lovely evening and meal. We enjoyed drink and an appetizer of fried avocado with corn relish and dungeness crab. Robb had pork belly for dinner and I had a delicious salmon. We would definitely recommend a visit to 94 Stewart and hope that we can hit up Il Bistro soon.
After dinner we rushed to the monorail station to take the train to the theater where the opera was being performed. It was our first time on the monorail. It was kind of fun and a pretty cheap and fast way to get from downtown to the Seattle Center. We semi-ran to the theater because we were running a little late, but luckily got there in time. I had decided that I wanted to see a classic opera for my first opera experience - so I chose the Barber of Seville. We had fantastic seats and were so impressed with the opera. It was really funny and the guy who sang "Figaro" was wonderful. (I loved hearing "Figaro" and not seeing Bugs Bunny at the same time.) The opera was super long and while I loved it, I was also a little glad when it was over. Luckily we managed to catch the last monorail of the night and made it back to our hotel around midnight! Let me say that I'm really happy that I chose this opera to see for my first and I would be more than happy to see another opera in the future. Another 30 Before 30 list success!

The next day we went to breakfast at Portage Bay Cafe. We probably waited close to an hour for a table - this place is popular and that's why we wanted to try it. Robb even went to Starbucks to get us coffee while we waited and read the paper. Our meals were pretty good and I wouldn't mind going to Portage Bay again, but there are so many other places to try for breakfast that I don't know if we'd go back on our own. Our next destination was the Center for Wooden Boats. I had read that on Sunday afternoons they provide free boat rides. We were there a little early so we took some time to walk around and look at some other boats in the docks. Then at the appropriate time we piled into a 100+ year old sail boat with a few other families and took a frigid sail around Lake Union. It was cold, but fun (and at least it didn't rain)!

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