With Barry still stuffed from his mega doughnut, it was time to head for our 5th state – Washington. We drove non-stop all the way to Seattle, where we booked into The Columbus Motor Inn.

washington state welcome sign 50 states 6 months

That night we decided to treat ourselves to dinner at Red Lobster – a restaurant that specialises in seafood. We’d had in it Phoenix when we came 4 years ago and loved it so we knew we had to go back. We’d been seeing adverts on TV for their new specials menu, where you could top everything with lobster. Including lobster – topped with lobster! We took a good look at the menu and made our decisions. It was tough, everything looked so good. Pretty soon our starters came out – a Lobster Bisque – neither of us had ever had it before, but after eating it here, we would definitely be having it again, and some oysters. Barry was reluctant to have them. Every time we order them he moans, saying he doesn’t like them but he always ends up eating them anyway. This time however, when they were placed on our table we both looked at each with worried expressions. They were huge! One was longer than my index finger and just as wide. How were we supposed to follow these whole? We covered them in lemon juice, horseradish and spicy tomato sauce and knocked them back. They weren’t the nicest oysters we’d ever tasted and Barry wouldn’t eat his last one so I had to finish it for him.

Then it was time for our mains to be served. I’d ordered the lobster topped with lobster and Barry got a mixed seafood platter including scallops, prawns and lobster. The meals didn’t just stop there though – this is America after all. We got a side salad with it and our choice of potato. As usual the portions were huge and we just about finished them. When the waitress came over and asked if we wanted dessert, I nearly threw up. We were so stuffed I couldn’t even think about eating anymore!

The next day we got a bus into Seattle. The bus stop was right by our motel and took just 20 minutes to get into the centre. We made our way to the Pacific Science Centre. We’d booked ourselves some tickets for this a couple of days ago. Our first stop once we got in was the Imax Theatre. You got to pick a film you wanted to see as part of your ticket price. We’d decided to see ‘Journey to the South Pacific’ It was a 3D film about a boy who lived in West Papua and was going to summer school on a boat where he would learn all about the ocean and how to keep the reef alive. It was mostly filmed underwater with all types of different fish. There was even a part where the boy swam with whale sharks. At least we’ve now found our next holiday destination – West Papua looked beautiful!


There were lots of other exhibits, including a dinosaur display where they actually moved, an insect display and a butterfly house. We spent ages with the butterflies. We’ve been to a few on this trip, but this was definitely the best one. They were flying all round us and landing on people. The others we’ve been to have either had hardly any butterflies or there have been more dead on the floor than in the air. Barry took so many photos. He said the campest thing to me ever that night – I just love butterflies and all their pretty colours (I actually said “I like taking photos of butterflies” – Barry). We also had a lesson on how earthquakes happen and went into a planetarium.

Once we’d finished at the museum, we sat on the grass by the Space Needle and had lunch that we’d bought at the local 7Eleven. You can go in the Space Needle and go up to the viewing deck but it’s actually only 605ft high. We’d decided to climb The Columbia Centre, which is 933ft high. The viewing deck is on the 73rd floor. You could see for miles and we looked down on the Space Needle.

On our way back to the bus stop, we stopped at the place which is probably what Seattle is really famous for – the worlds first Starbucks! The queue was out the door and people were all crowding round outside taking selfies and shots of the sign. Naturally we had to join in. We continued walking through Pike Place Market where Starbucks is and saw so many bakeries with delicious looking treats. They were hard to resist, but mindful of the portion size in the US and the impact it was having on our waistlines, we managed to resist.

The last thing we wanted to see in Seattle was the Fremont Troll. I had no idea what this was, but Barry was adamant we had to find it. Once we got back to our motel, we picked up the car and set the sat nav up to take us there. We drove to a road underneath a bridge and started looking around, but couldn’t see anything. I didn’t really know what I was looking for, so it was no wonder I couldn’t see it. We got to the bottom of the road and turned around. As we were driving back up, Barry suddenly said ‘I can see it’. I was looking around, but still had no idea what he was talking about. We parked up down a side street and started walking back to the bridge. Just as we approached, I saw this giant torso and head of troll, hidden underneath the bridge. He was massive; I don’t know how I missed it!