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Sunday, June 17, 2018

SIX HOURS TO SEATTLE: Hilo and Seattle Okay


Day 46 of the Lower Puna Eruption and the good news is that Hilo is still there.  Seattle, too, is okay. It was reported that green crystals are falling from the sky.  One of the products from lava is olivine, a green crystal.  When I once lived in Kau, half a century ago, I went to Papakolea, the Green Sand Beach of the Big Island.  Drive to South Point and walk 2.5 miles.


Olivine, a green-colored gem, comes from these eruptions.

Lava continues to flow from fissures 8 and 16, and there was again another 5+ earthquake from the summit.  As of yesterday the official tally is nearly 6,000 acres now covered by lava and 467 homes destroyed, but no human casualty.  In Guatemala, Volcan de Fuego has now killed more than 100, with nearly 200 still missing.

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I despise these early morning departures.  But this was the only way to get to Seattle from the Big Island in daylight.  Got up at 5AM to catch a Hawaiian Air flight to Kona.  My plane:


Since the latest eruption started, Honolulu has been lucky because the prevailing winds kept the volcanic haze away.  Apparently not from today, for I could hardly see Diamond Head from the airport and my seat when we cruised by Waikiki:


All went well and I was able to transfer to Alaska Air in Kona to Seattle:


While I got a hazy view of the Natural Energy Laboratory of Hawaii Authority, the flight pattern was such that the plane headed straight over Maui and I would not have been able see Hilo falling into the ocean if it did:


Thus for my future novel, an airline will need to directly fly from Hilo to Seattle.  The flight was comfortable, but first class is not worth the cost.  The food and service were marginal, the attendants smiley, but forgetful.  They provide an i-Pad type device to watch a limited number of film and other productions.

In any case, the state of Washington at 7:45PM, an hour away from sunset:


A stunning view of Mount Rainier:


It took about 5 hours and 45 minutes to fly from Kona to Seattle, and a tsunami, reflected off Victoria Island towards Seattle, would take about that same time, so the title of my novel, Six Hours to Seattle, is close enough.

There must be ten different ways to get into Seattle from the airport, with Light-rail and bus being around $3, various taxis from $40-$50.  Uber X is $27 and Shuttle Express $43, but my receipt said $19, so good luck.  Seattle at around 8:45PM:


Saw a Great White Shark over the city:


A fuzzy view of the Seattle Space Needle.  I'll get a better shot when I actually get there some time this week.  I was here for my very first World Expo in 1962 when Seattle hosted, and this structure was the symbolic attraction.

Passed by the Seattle Great Wheel a short walk from the Marriott Waterfront.  In 2012 when it was built it was the tallest on the West Coast at  175 feet.  There are 42 climate-controlled gondolas, each able to carry eight passengers.  Takes twelve minutes for three revolutions.  I don't plan to pay $11 for that ride, which is the senior rate.


My hotel room view at 9:30PM:


Still a bit of twilight.  

When I woke up, this same scene:


Image result for logo, father's day in seattle

Not sure what I'll be doing today.  Maybe the Seattle Aquarium for Father's Day.

Happy, though, that Seattle is still here and gorgeous.  The weather will be sunny with high temperatures up to the mid-80's for the next few days.

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