Tag Archives: Chihuly Glass Garden

Our trip so far

14 Aug
We have our Elective Residence Visas! We applied at the Italian Consulate in San Francisco on July 29 and they arrived August 3, much faster than we anticipated. We organized this trip for a month in the States to ensure there would be enough time for the visas to be processed and sent since we can’t get too far without passports. Of course, they arrived immediately. It is a relief to have that process over (although more processes await) and we are thoroughly enjoying time with family and friends.
Click on any photo in any of the following galleries for a better view or slide show.
We have been in the U.S. for almost three weeks now. Sometimes living in Italy seems very remote to us having slipped back into the American lifestyle. I am becoming used to enormous stores and selection and have enjoyed shopping for clothes in stores where I am familiar with the brands and sizing.  We run errands in borrowed cars. As it is time for end-of-summer sales, we have scored some good discounts.
Dining out continues to amaze us. We are loving the selection of ethnic and Northwest cuisine. We’ve had Thai, Peruvian, Japanese, and Mexican food, as well as fresh salmon and halibut, and the best hamburgers. I have not found halibut in Italy and I do miss it.
Prices are very high. When did it become so expensive in the U.S? It seems like a huge change in only three years. Add tax and tip and lunch or dinner out becomes an a line item on the budget. At lunch, the by-the-glass wine options are $11.00 and up. Seriously? And yet restaurants are full and reservations necessary. 
As you can tell, our visit has been a flurry of meals with friends and family.  Our Portland schedule was packed tight, but still we had time to help our son with the initial stages of his move to a new home. I did not take nearly enough pictures, at least until we got to Seattle, where we are currently wrapping up a stay with family. Mount Rainier National Park was beautiful and busy. Unfortunately, there are no rifugi to hike to and no strudel as we have when hiking in Italy. Rifugi are so civilized!
Thanks to John & Janet, Carolyn, Julie, Bernie & Peggy, Will & Gracia, Sander & Amethyst, Veronica & Barry, Susan, John & Debbie, Heather & Chris, and finally Derek for the glorious meals and good times! I highly recommend the Dale Chihuly Glass Gardens at Pacific Center in Seattle. Sono bellissimi! I will leave you with some photos from the Seattle portion of our trip. 
 Alla prossima!


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