Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Field trip

Last week I got to spend an entire day off as a chaperone on a field trip with Haley and her band/choir/orchestra mates. My group was with Hay and 7 of her female cohorts.

8 tweens.

Luckily, it wasn't as daunting as I thought.

We started the day at the school, where simply by default, I was going to be the cool dad. Even if I wasn't already cool, I still would've been the cool dad. My goodness, were some of the other parents super dorky.

Luckily, one of Haley's friend's mom was on the field trip too and, since we're already friendly, ended up chatting on the bus into Seattle.

Haley's group of girls was all good, too. Nice, listened, and generally had a good time. I just told them where to meet me and what I expected, and that I was going to be cool dad, and we were all good.

In Seattle, we stopped first at Benaroya Hall and saw a portion of the Seattle Symphony perform during their rehearsal. The conductor, who either had a Russian or French accent (I couldn't tell), was very interactive and took Q&A during the rehearsal. The kids were encouraged to use microphones to ask questions as well as volunteer to help conduct the orchestra.

The orchestra, as expected, sounded outstanding and for me, it was quite cool to hear these musicians at the top of their games. To have some of the technicalities and nuances of the music explained right after hearing it was pretty cool too.

From there, we walked a few blocks to Westlake, where we stood in line to jump on the monorail.

After the monorail, we ended up at the Seattle Center Center House, where we had lunch. I was approached by a long haired older Asian man and we had the following exchange:
Him: "Hey, man, you look coooool."
Me: "Right on. You look cool, too."
Him: "What's your name?"
Me: "Gwon. What's yours?"
Him: "John. This is for you."
He handed me a flower made from a leaf or something.
Me: "Nice, thanks."
And I thought that was that. Then he said, "Hey man, you have any change? I'm really hungry."
I gave him a few bucks and felt stupid for getting hustled. But he didn't look homeless!
Anyway, Hay, me and our friend Jennifer had lunch at a Mexican restaurant (not great) and then made our way to EMP.

EMP was cool. I had never been there and though it would have been cool to visit with my family, I have a feeling I'd be fighting the kids as they would have been quite bored. However, with Haley and her friends, they all just zoomed off, leaving me to the EMP by myself for a bit.

Which was sort of fun.

I got to see a bunch of Nirvana memorabilia, British Invasion stuff, Jimi Hendrix items. There was a horror exhibit, a fantasy exhibit, a Seahawks fan exhibit, and an area to play instruments upstairs, or at least attempt to play them. Only one bass exhibit though, I'm sad to report.

We got a nice, long time to hang out there, but even so, we ended up running out of things to see. I did get to hang out with Haley and her friend, Jilly, for a bit, though. That was fun. I had let the girls run around doing what they wanted, but Hay and Jilly got bored and tagged along with me for the rest of the time. That was fun to hang with them. They really get each other and it was a blast for me to just be with Haley.

At the end of it all, it was back on the buses to the Eastside. It was nice to get into Seattle and not have to pay for parking or have to rush around anywhere. It was sort of like being a tourist.

But the best part was just hanging out with Haley and having fun in our city.