After a splendid granola at Hector’s in Kirkland, we went to Barnes and Noble to pick up a copy of HP7 for Peter before setting out on our driving adventure out to Mazama, WA (advertised to Peter as “the middle of nowhere”) for a couple nights at the Freestone Inn.
A four to five hour drive through the Northern Cascades would have been our idea of heaven just a year ago, but our little banshee has changed how we look at everything, and not always for the better. I have to say, today was a much better trip than in times past, but she was still miserable for about 1/8 of the trip.
On our way out of the Seattle area, we ran across a roadside fruit stand and J and Peter went wild. Northwest berries are delightful, so I was grateful for their choices. Peter and Ella and I munched on berries in the back seat while J drove. Blackberries, Raspberries and Rainier Cherries…simply delicious.
I drove the final 20 miles, as I was becoming carsick sitting between Ella and Peter while we swayed back and forth over the moutain roads. When we finally arrived at the Freestone Inn, we discovered that we’d have to drive another 15 miles to the town of Winthrop for laundry facilities. Since we had expected to spend the weekend in the Alki Beachhouse, we planned our clothing use around having laundry facilities tonight. So, we loaded the (unhappy to be restained) kids back in the truck and headed to Winthrop, WA.
Once we arrived, we saw that it is a full-on “Ye Olde West” town (insert eye-roll here) and agreed that it was the last place we wanted to be, but with no clean clothes for the weekend, J was irritable enough already without dirty clothes to boot, so we loaded the laundry in the local laundromat and left it to find espresso and smoothies.
Of course, the andventure couldn’t go too smoothly, as we discovered this sign only after loading the machines:
…and when they said slowly, they meant s-l-o-w-l-y…trickled in more than poured in to fill the tubs. I don’t blame the frustrated vandal who added the commentary to the sign!
Fortunately the dryers worked well and once the loads were complete, we made the trip back out of Winthrop and past the Rhythm and Blues festival campground back in time for dinner.
Ella was deliriously tired. We should have known she wouldn’t tolerate a sit-down dinner, but we blythely marched to our doom in the Freestone Inn’s dining room. 4 minutes. That’s all the time it took for us to want to leave. J took her for a walk while I requested that our meal be brought to our room. Fortunately the waitstaff obliged, and we fed Ella her zucchini and carrots while she cruised around the coffee table.
After dinner I took the kids swimming so dad could have a rest. They were both thrilled to be in the pool, and I have to say, so was I. The grey cuds loomed, and it sprinkled, but the pool water was delightfully warm, so we spent a good 3 minutes splashing around. Peter spent most of that time telling me how happy he was we were here in the Methow Valley, and how he couldn’t wait to spend tomorrow hiking and swimming and hiking and swimming. Ella used her last bit of energy splashing and bouncing and laughing in the water. She fell asleep almost as soon as she was pyjama-ed.
Peter read his self-rationed 7 chapters of HP7 and then went to sleep with a smile on his face.
Tomorrow will be lovely. No driving!