Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Thar' They Blow!

SEQUIM--Today was whale-watching day, as well as our first venture into Port Townsend, the place where we'll be performing on Saturday night. It took a few hours for the boat to get ready and some weather problems to pass, so we had a little bit of time to explore the town in the interim. We chilled for a while at a cool local cafe called the Boiler Room, which had a lot of unusual drinks besides the standard coffee fare, along with games and funky decor; the mocha I had was quite good. We also walked around in search of sandwiches that could be taken on the boat with us, and we were lucky enough to stumble upon the Victorian Square Cafe and Deli (940 Water St.) that is actually underground, located a short flight of stairs down from the sidewalk. The place was intimate and well-furnished (and, true to form, I was scoping out the place, imagining a very small jazz group playing down there), and the sandwiches were delicious; I'm sure we'll be back later in the week.

The boat trip itself was four hours long--a bit expensive, but totally worth it in terms of getting to see things that we'd never otherwise see at home. The boat, called the Olympas, was run by an outfit called P.S. Express, which is headquartered right on the waterfront. The captain (Roger) and tourguide (Eric) were friendly and informative, and, save for the rough seas, which got the better of a few members of our party, I think everyone had a great time. Among the things we got to see were a bald eagles' nest and a large group of harbor seals, including some pups. (I got a picture of the eagles' nest, but I'll have to get a seal picture from someone else. My batteries ran out at that point, and the rechargeable ones didn't charge properly, though that problem has been solved. I'll post everything here when I get it all collected.)

Sure enough, when we'd been out for about an hour and a half, we got to the whale area. There were actually three pods of whales, and Eric was able to identify most of them by name. One particular whale, Ruffles, surfaced quite a few times near our boat, and several people in our group were able to get a decent picture or two. Orcas are amazing creatures, and it's staggering to think that, on a full-grown adult, the dorsal fin alone is taller than nearly any human who doesn't play center in the NBA. Most of us on the boat hadn't seen anything like this outside of Sea World, which now pales in comparison. It took a while to get our land legs when we disembarked, but it was truly a memorable experience.

The rest of the day was spent taking a righteous nap and going into Sequim for dinner. Tomorrow will include visits to a rain forest and the Pacific coast (which means that, eventually, this week's posts will be filled with pictures).

What's in a name: We've seen some places with unusual names on this trip, and I'll post them here throughout the week. Here's the list so far:

Chicken Coop Road
The John Wayne Marina
Jimmy-comelately Creek {Johnny's brother?--ed.]
Fat Smitty's Restaurant

UPDATE: We gots more...
Kitchen-Dick Rd.
Tumwater Truck Rd.
State Salmon Hatchery Interpretive Area [what, the salmon do sign language?--ed.]
Dancing Elk Rd.
Undie Rd.
The Hoh Humm Ranch
Hard Rain Cafe
Camp David Jr. (we were trying to decide if Cheney or the Bush twins had their retreat there)
Camp Flattery

ANOTHER UPDATE: I forgot this one earlier...
Chevy Chase Golf Resort (be the ball)
and another real funny one....
(followed by a number at which you could evidently report people whom you caught in the act of littering)


Anonymous said...

i'm jealous


Jazzy G said...

You need to add Chevy Chase Golf Course to your list. Not really unusual.. I guess. But incredibly funny.