• Madison Miller

Seattle in a time of Covid-19

Andrew on the beach in Edmonds

About a month ago, Andrew and I went to Seattle. It was still during an iffy time in the COVID-19 panic and they still hadn’t banned travel. Washington was a hot spot, so we were definitely concerned about that. But, ultimately, we were taking the trip for family reasons, so we thought it was important to go. Andrew left about three days before I did. Every day he was gone, the state of the pandemic changed so much. It went from a possible concern to a definite concern so quickly. I’m sure everyone else can relate. A month ago, I was talking in my kitchen with friends I planned to go to London with, complaining about how they were making a big deal out of nothing. It’s crazy to think I felt that way now. I decided to still go. I wanted to see Andrew’s family and be with him in a potentially difficult time. I brought all of my work stuff with me and decided that if we got stuck there, I’d be prepared at least. The airports were a little weird, but nothing super out of the ordinary. There were masks, but it’s impossible to social distance on a plane. The flight to Seattle was actually packed, to my surprise. I sat next to a super suspicious guy on that flight who had his hands or arms covering his face the whole flight. I felt like he was having a panic attack, trying to sleep, or doing a terrible job of trying to hide that he felt bad. I was so relieved when I finally got there. It was around midnight on a Saturday. I think we were the last flight to get in that night. Andrew picked me up, and we drove up to Edmonds, where his aunt lives. It was dark, but we got to drive through Seattle and see the skyline. The next morning, we had breakfast at a local place in Edmonds called The Rusty Pelican Cafe. Nothing seemed out of the ordinary there. The servers were wearing gloves, but that was about it. I had the tastiest eggs benedict I’ve ever had. Also, we had giant blueberry mimosas. I don’t even like blueberry normally, but they were incredible.

After breakfast, we walked down to the shoreline. Edmonds also borders Puget Sound, so there’s a beach with a view of the mountains in the distance. It was freezing, but it was one of the more gorgeous things I’ve ever seen. The air felt clear and smelled salty. We walked around the beach for a bit before picking up some coffee and donuts and heading back to the house.

We visited with Andrew’s aunt for a while. The house she lives in is incredibly cool. Huge windows that let all the light in, a koi pond, enormous cedar trees in the backyard. I couldn’t stop talking about the trees. We just don’t have anything like those trees in Alabama or probably many other places in the U.S. They are massive, hundreds of years old. It reminded me of how much I need to go see the Redwoods as soon as I can.

After visiting, we decided to make a quick trip into Seattle. I did want a chance to see Pike Place Market, but I was a little nervous about it. We were taking all of the precautions we could. We tried to stay away from people and wash our hands/use hand sanitizer whenever possible. We had fun exploring the stalls. I was most impressed by the flower stalls. Again, we just don’t have flowers like that here unless you want to pay around $50. These were huge bouquets for $10-$20. If I lived there, I would have one of those every week. Andrew and I explored some other cute shops. One , called Marnin Saylor, was devoted to donut cats. He ended up getting me a cute shirt from there. We also went in a gaming store and browsed an incredible selection of board games. It was all things nerd, so naturally Andrew and I had fun in there.

After Pike Place closed, we decided to hit up a local brewery before heading back to Edmonds. We picked Cloudburst Brewery. Again, everything seemed like business as usual. I had a Happy Little Clouds and Andrew had a Fuckin' Gonuts, both were delicious. The vibe in Cloudburst really reminded me of the breweries at home. Small, artsy, unapologetic, fun.

I had fun in Seattle proper, but I was happy to get back to Edmonds and shower. For once in my life, I just didn’t have the usual bug to explore. For the rest of the trip, we visited to Andrew’s aunt and stuck around Edmonds. We did manage to get a trip to Caravan Kebab in. It was suggested by Andrew’s aunt’s friend. I’m so glad we did because I had some truly delicious butter chicken there. I think it’s tied with the Chai Pani butter chicken in Asheville that I love so much. It was still a lovely trip and I had a great time just hanging out with Andrew and family. Sometimes those really are the best times you can have. And now that two weeks have officially passed since I’ve been there, I can say I’m also glad we got out for a little bit to see some of Seattle. Next time, I promise to explore some more. Hope you enjoy this honest take on some light travel I did during this mess. The virus is set to peak here on my birthday, April 19th! Whoo! I very much hope they are right and we see a decline after that. I so want everything to be ok again. In the meantime, please stay safe and inside. Get some vitamin C.