Thursday, September 24, 2015

Taking in Tacoma, WA

After experiencing Seattle and spending some time relaxing in our hotel, it was fun taking some time to explore Tacoma. It's such a fun artsy-fartsy city. After all the years my cousin attended college at the University of Puget Sound, I can see why she loved (loves) it there so much. It was fun finally seeing the place that she called home for so many years. In Tacoma, you come across something beautiful at every turn. We spotted intricate murals, beautiful parks, ornate and historical buildings, wildlife, among other things. The city surpassed any expectations that we had.

If you attended high school in the late 90s, then chances are you've heard of a little movie called 10 Things I Hate About You. Chances are you also grow a little wistful at the thought of Heath Ledger singing and running up and down the stairs in the image below. If not, then you can at least appreciate the interesting architecture of this beautiful high school. Yes, this is probably one of the most spectacular public high schools you'll ever see!

My cousin's college campus was likely pulled straight out of storybook. It was beautiful and lush and everything you would expect from a northwestern location. We couldn't have asked for more perfect weather for an outdoor graduation. It had apparently poured the year before, so we were thankful for sun and blue skies. A rarity, I believe.

We had a little bit of time to drive around Tacoma and explore Point Defiance Park. It wasn't nearly enough time to fully enjoy it (theme of this trip), but we did come across the cutest raccoon on our drive. We did take a few steps into the forest in order to get the full effect of the towering trees and their giant canopy. I have to be honest, I couldn't help but see why vampires like it up there. (This just gave away my Twilight books obsession.) Needless to say, we need at least another week in Tacoma!

One evening we stumbled across the coolest little brewery and restaurant near the University of Puget Sound campus. Engine House no. 9. The brewery had set up residence in an actual old fire engine house. Back when they used it for such, the engines were pulled by horse. You can see the horse stall openings in the brewery walls today. It's a fun place with a great atmosphere and good beer and food to boot. We call that a win, win.

My cousin wanted to take us to her favorite local farmer's market, The Proctor Farmers' Market. We enjoyed food, music, coffee, and the sights & smells. I have a soft spot in my heart for tamales, so I was pleased to find some really delicious ones at the market. My cousin also took us to the Pacific Northwest Shop right around the corner from the market. We got some nice little souvenirs to remind us of our trip.

If this post feels a little hectic, it's probably because our trip to Tacoma was a little hectic, in a good way, as well. We crammed in as much as humanly possible during our limited time there, and we did a little of this and that. Hopefully we'll find ourselves up that way again soon! I know my cousin would love to show us around her city some more. Until then, see you later Pacific Northwest! We had fun.

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