Our friends are house-sitting at a million-dollar home in the Magnolia neighborhood of Seattle. This is not a mansion - in Seattle a million-dollar home means something decent (3-4 bdr) on a small plot of land in a good neighborhood, with a small garden. But since we are of the non-millionaire variety, we have never been into such a place and had no idea what it was like.
We were told it was going to be amazing, so we cleared out our schedules and headed over there yesterday afternoon. Boy, it is amazing. First of all, Magnolia is the most incredible neighborhood I have yet been to in Seattle - it is a very steep hill out on a peninsula that overlooks Puget Sound on one side (with the Olympic Mountains behind) and downtown Seattle on the other (with Mount Rainier behind). All the houses are very pretty and well-kept, and the yards are tidy and blooming. This particular house was no exception, and had a garden that made me gape (these people must spend every spare second in their garden). Since they were right on the hill, their back patio and living room windows opened out to the view of the sound and you could watch the ferries and sailboats go by as you ate your dinner. It was incredible (I don't think I can describe it with words, and I'm not sure if the picture does it justice either, but I'll try).
This is the view from their back porch:
To make things even more surreal, after dinner we walked a few blocks to the newly minted Ella Bailey Park in Magnolia, which also sits on a hill and not only sports state-of-the-art playground equipment of all sorts and sizes, but also overlooks downtown Seattle and Queen Anne Hill (the next neighborhood over). We stood on the edge of the park with our mouths hanging open for a good half-hour, which happened to be during sunset and was even more amazing. As we stood there the lights came on in the Space Needle and was followed by the entire downtown lighting up.
What a night! To top it off, we headed back home afterwards for some Trader Joe's cheesecake (97% of your daily saturated fat per serving...!). Yum!