After bidding farewell to La Dolce Vita, Joe, and Adrianne, we packed up Fordy and made our way to the airport.
No, we weren’t flying away after sailing away.
We went to the airport to pick up Lieutenant Paul Guebert, since he had flown to Seattle on official Navy business. Official Navy business meaning Paul took 5 days off to hang and drink with us. But we took that charge very seriously.
Our first stop after leaving the airport was to have a late lunch in the city. Paul was hankering for a “good sandwich” (if you’re going to have a sandwich, it helps if it’s good) and we settled on a Yelp favorite, The Other Coast Cafe. The sandwiches didn’t disappoint, so much so that Paul was still savoring his leftovers two days later. After refueling, we made our way north to Mukilteo to meet previously mentioned homebrewing master Ben Hayes.
Ben has lived in the Seattle area for the last year but he clearly hasn’t forgotten his Midwestern roots. And by this we mean 1) he had a gallon of vitamin D whole milk in his fridge, 2) he had already plotted a Google map of local must-visit watering holes, and 3) he offered to change Fordy’s oil.
Oh Ben. You’re no Schmuckilteo, you’re still a Delavanite!
Ben proceeded to spend the rest of his weekend hosting the three of us, taking us to his favorite restaurants and bars, and giving us a tour of Seattle’s best — Pike’s Place Market, Capitol Hill, and we know you were all thinking it — the flagship Seattle REI store. Granted, REI wasn’t originally on Ben’s tour list, but Lt. Guebert wanted to check out the returned merchandise, so we made a pit stop. (And it was a good thing we ended up at the outdoorsy mecca because there was a National Parks ranger desk in the store so we got to quiz friendly Mr. Ranger with a million questions about the Olympic Peninsula which we were heading to next.)
Here are a few of our favorite memories from the weekend:
- Four craft breweries/brew pubs in two days: Scuttlebutt, Diamond Knot, Elysian, The Pine Box. Interesting piece of trivia, The Pine Box is a former funeral parlor which now serves 30+ craft brews on tap. In Ben’s words, it’s a “freaking fantastic business model.” Agreed, dude.
- Boeing headquarters: Ben’s office happens to be the world’s largest building by volume. Which in case you were wondering, is 472, 000,000 cubic feet. Ben weighs the massive jets once they’re assembled, then again after they’re painted (which to our surprise, adds several tons of weight), and then a third time before they’re given to the customer. Some of these customers have waited years for their 747, so it better not be too chunky.
- Paul’s Foray Into the Scary World of Seafood: Ben successfully convinced Paul to try lobster chowder, which much to our surprise (like those jets’ weight fluctuations!), Paul ate it. Now, he didn’t exactly finish it. But he ate it.
So thank you, Ben. For not only giving us a wonderfully memorable weekend but also for giving Paul the confidence to know that he’ll be okay if a host serves lobster chowder at a dinner party.
p.s. Sheila, JT, Laura, and the rest of the Hayes clan: we have the perfect Christmas present idea for Ben. An ottoman for the Man Couch in his garage!