Seattle Space Needle is a Romantic Close to a Busy Day
Sunday night was approaching and Monday morning we would leave for Vancouver. We already had a car scheduled to pick us up and take us to Seattle’s downtrodden Union Station. We had a few more hours on Sunday evening and wanted to take advantage of our last hours in The Emerald City. We decided to go up to the top of The Seattle Space Needle.
The Space Needle was built in 1961 for that Seattle World’s Fair held in 1962. It’s privately owned by the same family that originally built it almost a half-century ago. It’s 605 feet tall and 138 feet wide at the widest point and was built to withstand earthquakes of up to 9.1 in magnitude. The elevator soars to the top in about 45 seconds.
We were told, when it was built, the original architect bragged in the future all buildings would be constructed this way. Though The Space Needle has a cool, sleek Jetson’s look – it didn’t happen. The Space Needle only has three usable floors of space making it highly impractical for developers and builders.
It costs $18. to go to the top of The Space Needle. Ernie’s ticket was $16 with the Seniors discount. They invite you to spend as much time as you want at the top. Of course, you will find the ubiquitious gift store at the bottom with every Space Needle themed item you can imagine. We had already had dinner, so we weren’t interested in the restaurant at the very top floor. On the floor we were on they had grab and go fast food, soda, bottles of water. I wasn’t too interested in the $7 Kobe Beef Hot Dog, either.
The picture at the top of this post I took with my cell phone after we came down from The Space Needle. Above and to the right you see the Seattle skyline just as all the lights are coming on. And, to the left is a view of the sunset. We checked the local newspaper to find out what time the sun would set. A lot of other people seemed to have the same idea and the outside observatory deck was crowded with throngs of people trying to get the best pictures. After two and a half days of running around town – and seeing as much
of the sights as we could – this was the perfect way to close out our time in The Emerald City before boarding another Amtrak train and high-tailing it to Vancouver, British Columbia.
Getting the layout of the city from way up above we could look down and see all the places we’d hung out at over the weekend. It was fun to pick out the Harbor Cruise boat we took on Puget Sound the day before, Pikes Place Market and other landmarks we visited during our short stay in Seattle.
Ernie and I have different passions when it comes to travel. I want to plug my laptop into a cafe and write. He wants to ride all the mass transit possible in the time he has allotted. As for me? I’m happy to ride a bus, trolley, train or subway to get somewhere. He, on the other hand is content to ride a light rail train to the end of the line. Get off. Walk around for a few minutes until the next bus or whatever comes along to take him back from whence he came.
So, as we travel there are days we will spend together seeing the sights. Then, there are other days when we’ll have breakfast together and each go off our separate ways to see and do what we want. The day we went to the top of The Space Needles was one of those “apart” days.
Here’s how I used that time: I stayed downtown within a mile or two of our hotel. I went to Nordstrom Rack and bought a sexy pair of sandals – but with a moderate heel. I have no desire to wear Space Needle heels to walk in. They turned out to be my most expensive “souvenier” of the entire trip at $50. I also returned to Pikes Place Market to get better pictures for one of the blog posts below. I had fish and chips for lunch at one of the tiny vendors across the street from where they produce and flowers were sold (the fries were tempting – but I just ate the fish). On the way back to our hotel I meandered into a tea shop and sipped an iced White Peach Green Tea and chatted with the owner of the shop.
Then I walked back to our hotel, fired up the laptop in our hotel lobby and got to work – or I should probably say play – writing about our excellent adventure so far. Ernie went God only knows where on the city buses and had Vietnamese food for lunch in a part of Seattle with a high population of Asians. Hey, I don’t completely get it, either. But I respect it – and that’s enough for him. For me – no rides anywhere without at least a point of interest or some kind of destination in mind.
Coming together at the end of the day is always our way of checking in and sharing our adventures from the day. Gives us things to talk about and share with each other. For us, respecting those differences keeps our marriage fun and interesting and keeps our travel more enjoyable. He doesn’t have to be dragged off shopping with me when I know he’d rather stick knitting needles in his eyes. I don’t have to set aside my passion for writing because I’m riding all over kingdom come with my husband who has no particular place to go.