Friday, August 5, 2011

An Unexpected Hike

Dinner: a slice of pizza from Giannoni's.
I didn't originally plan to do any hiking yesterday. No, yesterday would be a day of flying. Flying from my former home in California to my current home in Seattle. Between arriving at the airport, flying to Phoenix, waiting a couple of hours for a connecting flight to Seattle, then making it back home, where would I possibly have time to hike? Nope, wasn't going to happen.

Until it did.... =)

The travel went well. I got a front row seat in the small plane out of San Luis--lots of legroom by those bulkheads!

And I was originally assigned a middle seat in the plane to Seattle, but as I approached 17E, I noticed the guy who would be my neighbor in the window seat of 17F chatting with another guy in the row behind him in the aisle at 18D. Friends? Coworkers? Didn't matter to me--what did matter was that they clearly were deep in a conversation, and I wanted that aisle seat he was in. =)

"You know," I said, as I pushed my duffel bag into an overhead bin, "I'll be happy to trade that middle seat I have with you if you want to sit next to your friend to chat."

And he took me up on the offer! Sweet! No empty seats, and I still managed to finagle an aisle seat giving up nothing more than... a middle seat. Totally awesome. =)

I had to let my slice of pizza cool a bit--burned
my mouth, I did. *nodding* You can
actually see the Longfellow Legacy Creek Trail
in this photo. It crosses the street where
those pedestrian crossing signs are in the street
and enters the park on the left.
It's always convenient when food is so close
to the trail. =)
My new neighbor was a flight attendant from Continental, who seemed fascinated by the ways of US Airways. Even the trash bags fascinated her because they had handles. She was envious of the handles. I guess the trash bags on Continental have strings to cinch the bags closed, but no handles. She played Angry Birds on her cell phone, which fascinated me since I had heard of Angry Birds, but never saw it in action. =)

So my flight got into Seattle on time, at about 7:30 in the evening. I got off and walked over to a payphone (I don't have a cell phone, after all!) to give Amanda a call and find out how close she was. And she was already waiting for me in the cell phone lot. Excellent!

Minutes later, we were reunited. =) On the drive home, she asked if I'd like to be dropped off somewhere to hike the rest of the way home. This isn't unusual--I often do this to stretch my legs--and I considered my options. If she dropped me off before we crossed the West Seattle Bridge, I'd have to walk home along some busy roads that really aren't fun to walk. If she dropped me off after getting off the West Seattle Bridge, it wouldn't really be much of a hike. And then Amanda suggested the Longfellow Creek Trail, for the Hike-a-Thon.

Oh, yeah... the Hike-a-Thon.... I forgot about that. This wasn't supposed to be an official hiking day, after all, and the Hike-a-Thon was the last thing on my mind. =)

Yes, I thought, that would be a nice little hike. Let's do it! Amanda drove me to Westwood Village where we did a little shopping at Target because, hey, it was there, and so were we, and why not? Then I grabbed a flashlight and my camera out of my pack and Amanda drove home and I walked.

Some art to be found along the trail.
Well, not at first. First thing I did was buy a slice of pizza because I was hungry. It was already a little after 8:00 and I hadn't had dinner yet. I got my pizza, ate it up, then walked across the street to the start of the Longfellow Creek Trail. Or the end of it, depending on one's point of view. And finally, I walked home. =)

The hike was uneventful. It's not a particularly pleasant trail--probably half of it goes up onto surface streets, through Westwood Village, past a Home Depot and the Southwest Seattle Police Precinct, through neighborhoods where I strongly suspect I've seen drug deals happening. But the trail sections are pleasant, passing a beaver dam, fluttering trees, and an occasional rabid squirrel. Okay, maybe it wasn't rabid, but let's say it was. =)

I didn't get to enjoy even that very much, however, because by then it was so dark, I could barely see my hand in front of my face.

But the walk was invigorating. Being cooped up in planes and airports all day isn't something a "wanderer" such as myself does well with, and getting a chance to stretch my legs--really stretch them--feels wonderful.

The other end of the Longfellow Creek Trail is marked with a fishbone bridge and giant dragonfly. I tried taking pictures of both. The fishbone bridge you can see pretty well because I would walk right up to it, but the dragonfly was problematic. Even with a flash, it didn't photograph well in the dark. And by the time I got close enough for the flash to do its job, I was too close and the whole effect was muted.

Oh, well. It looks better in daylight anyhow.

And that's how I got an extra (and unexpected) 4.3 miles of hiking in yesterday evening.

Even with a flash, there wasn't much to take photos of along the trail.
It's just too dark....

I was a little surprised that the flash worked so well with the
Fishbone Bridge after it failed me on most of the rest of the trail.

This was the best photo I could manage of the giant dragonfly. Oh, bother....


Kristin aka Trekkie Gal said...

If you have Google Chrome, you can play Angry Birds online for free.

Goofy girl said...

pretty cool!! I haven't tried Angry birds yet

Bubbaloo Magoo said...

After reading the unexpected adventures of Ryan, how did you come up with angry birds? He didn't mention angry birds anywhere! I did like the rabid squirrels, though - I think they all are. Oh, maybe that was it... ;)

Kristina said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kristina said...

Bubbaloo...he mentions the woman next to him on the plane was playing angry Birds on her phone.

I second what TG said about Google Chrome. I love playing it on my computer, and better yet it does not kill my phone battery =)

Blue said...

ZOMG! I was right there in the dragonfly park this spring.....


Krafty Kat said...

I'm so glad there is another person in the world without a cell phone. Reaffirms my decision not to have one.