Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Welcome, Flat Stanley

While visiting our friends in Wenatchee, we picked up a guest who stayed with us for a short while and will be moving on.  Allow me to introduce guest blogger, Flat Stanley.

Hello everybody.  
This is my first blog post so I hope it goes okay.  I am with Ken, Kali and their daughter Sidney.  I first met Ken and Kali when they were visiting the Ronngrens in Wenatchee, WA (my previous host family).  We all went on a day trip together to Leavenworth, WA which is 30 miles from Wenatchee in the center of Washington State.  It is famous for being a "Little Bavarian" town which has yearly festivals and looks just like a town in the Alps in Europe.  When I visited, it was the last day of Oktoberfest which is a huge German holiday with lots of food, drink, music and celebration.  We stood in a long line to get a bratwurst (German hotdog) and I saw lots of happy people there.  


Kali and Ken with Flat Stanley in Leavenworth, WA
Flat Stanley looks on as a woman gets a tattoo in Leavenworth, WA
We returned to Ken and Kali's home in Seattle, WA.  That is where the Space Needle, Mt. Rainer and Pike Place Market are.  But we have spent most of our time around their home in the Scandinavian-neighborhood of Ballard just north of downtown Seattle.  Seattle is the largest city in the Pacific Northwest and has the second most number of rainy days per year in the US at 154 days (first is Cleveland, OH).  And maybe because of that, Seattle is the #1 most literate city in the US--I guess everybody goes inside and reads when it's raining.  

Their 1-year-old daughter Sidney is quite excited that I'm here and likes to grab at me when her mom holds me up.  She is a messy eater.
Sidney tries to make Flat Stanley feel at home.

One day Kali took us to the pet food store and I got to look at the kitties.  They were very interested in me and tried to rip my arm off.  Kali fixed it with scotch tape.


The kitties love Flat Stanley

We also visited the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks known as "The Ballard Locks."  It is a man-made mechanism that keeps the fresh water and saltwater separate.  It allows boats through by creating a sort of "water elevator" since the water level on the fresh side is ~20 feet above the salty sea level side.  






It also has a fish ladder that allows spawning salmon to come and go without problems.  There is a fantastic viewing area to see the salmon as they swim through.


A salmon in the fish ladder
Some cool sculpture outside the fish ladder.

Something else cool in Seattle is the Experience Music Project / Science Fiction Museum.  This past weekend a new exhibit opened about the show Battlestar Galactica so I went with Kali to see it.  I enjoyed looking at all the model ships they used in the show.









This is the cone of guitars in the center of the museum.  It was pretty cool.


Finally I visited the Google offices in Seattle.  Ken works there designing Google things like Gmail and Calendar and Maps.  The office is on the banks of the ship canal down from the Ballard Locks.  Lots of smart people work there and they certainly love their jobs.  The office has lots of games and distractions to make sure people don't work too hard but they still do.  


Well everyone, I've enjoyed my stay in Seattle but now I'm off to Mountain View, California.

Hello to all my Greenville Elementary friends in Mrs. DeJaynes class.  I hope you are all excited about Halloween. I look forward to more adventures and will talk to you soon.

Your Friend,
Flat Stanley

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