Gym, Laundry and…Rick Steves?!?

Our apologies for the silence over the last few days – we’ve both been grappling with some wicked jet lag over here.  Two days ago was my worst (I slept for 17 hours), but yesterday we were able to go without afternoon naps and it’s looking like today will be the same, so fingers crossed that we’re getting to the other side.

Don’t think that we haven’t been busy though!  We’ve still been doing our best to get out of the apartment as much as we can, and I’ll recap a few events individually in the next few posts, but I thought I’d start by talking a bit about what life is looking like over here.

One of our top priorities when we got here was to find a gym.  When we lived in New York there wasn’t a convenient gym for me to use so I would just work out at home, but when we got to Seattle Jared and I started going to the gym together in West Seattle and we really liked it.  We found that it was a really nice activity to do together (even though we pretty much do our own thing once we’re there) and we thought that it would add a sense of structure to our days here and get us out of the house.  We set out looking for a gym that Jared found online, only to find that it was a 15 minute bus ride away.  However, the nice woman who told us this suggested that we try a hotel – and we were conveniently across the street from the Hilton Imperial!  We walked over and they had a basic but sufficient facility and a monthly membership of about $50 each (including access to the sauna and steam room which we will SO appreciate as it gets colder) so we both joined.

So far, it’s been great.  For whatever reason, there have never been more than 2 other people working out when we are there.  It’s also been exactly what we were looking for in terms of the right way to start our day and it’s only a 5 minute walk from our apartment.

Also high on the priorities list was to do some laundry.  If you watched our apartment tour video from a few days ago, you’ll recall that we are fortunate to have a washer in our bathroom.  This wasn’t absolutely necessary to us when we were apartment hunting, but now that we’re here I am really thankful that I don’t have to schlep a load of laundry up and down those steps!  Anyone who has spent time in Europe knows that dryers are pretty unusual and that everyone hangs their laundry out on the line.

While I find this really quaint and have no problem with my laundry air drying, the New Yorker in me is still a little paranoid that my clothes will get stolen!  I’m sure I will get over this after a few washes though (and as I write this Jared is hanging clothes out on the line).

Though we’ve been here under a week, we are starting to feel at home here and are liking the city a lot.  One of the drawbacks of living in the old town is that it’s packed with tourists during the day (good thing we’re used to weaving around people), but then a major plus is that when they clear out at night it’s like the town is all ours.  Now that we’re getting our bearings we are going to start to explore more outside the old town and our landlady has given us some great suggestions for later this week and next week.

And we had a near celebrity encounter that was very exciting to us travel geeks – we met someone who works with Rick Steves!  A few nights ago we got a knock on our door and our landlady was with a nice man named Cameron who works with Rick (if you’ve seen the outtakes from the Croatia episode, he’s the one holding up the flower in the foreground) and was scouting our apartment to possibly be featured in a future guide.  That poor guy – he could not have found a more excited person on the other side of the door.  I even made him take a picture with me:

this is what I look like when I am fully geeking out

Cameron was a really good sport about my enthusiasm and it really made my day to chat with him since Rick Steves guides have been my go-to travel resource since I was in high school (and fun fact: his kids go to my middle/high school).  I also MAY OR MAY NOT have passed on our blog card to him so if you’re reading this, hi Cameron!

We’ve also spent a lot of time stocking up our kitchen and have been cooking all of our meals, but I am going to give that topic it’s own post – plus I really want to include some pictures of the big supermarket but I forgot the camera last time so I have to wait until our landlady takes us back.  I have some other great posts planned for this week involving sightseeing and cats…I bet you can’t wait!


3 responses

  1. Just watched the Croatia episode of Rick Steves Europe. Saw Cameron walking with Steve and interviewing him, and yes the outake of Cameron and the flower. I have learned more in the last two days from your awesome blog and the Rick Steves program. I have read your complete blog and feel like I am traveling and exploring right alongside, your posts are so well written with such emotion and feeling. How fortunate you are to begin this journey. Looking forward to more. luv Grandma Janet

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