We woke much earlier than I expected yesterday morning (around 7, local time), and decided to start exploring. First, we tracked down a little cafe for breakfast (which was quite tasty - we're heading back there today for their corned beef & cabbage special). Good thing that we had a hearty breakfast, too, as we didn't end up eating again 'till after 5pm.
By a little after 9, we headed up (coincidentally) State Route 9, to explore the two counties we're looking most closely at, Skagit & Whatcom. Along the way, I pointed out various places to the Troll that I thought we might consider if job needs bring us closer to the Seattle area instead. We cruised through the small burg of Sedro Woolley, and it's outer-rural neighbor Cokedale. Lovely places up there. Then up to Whatcom county & up through Maple Falls. Going further along the road we were on (the Mount Baker Highway), we actually ended up at the Mount Baker ski area - which isn't actually on Mount Baker, but has some fabulous views of it and Mount Shuksan - both apparently peaked in snow year 'round. It was beautiful, and we got some great pictures (I hope. We really have GOT to spring for a digital camera sometime soon). Both up & down the mountain took a long time, because they were resurfacing the single road that goes to the ski area. It was worth it, though. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful. Plus, I got to see at kinda close range (relatively speaking) the volcano that we will likely be living under. It was very cool.
By the time we got all the way down the mountain, it was after 3, and we decided to drive on to Bellingham proper for dinner. We took wind-y backish roads, and so didn't get seated & eating until after 5. We fell on the food like starved wolverines. Fortunately, it was quite good. Once our gorging was complete, we looked around at the fascinating, bright decor (and took pictures). In no time flat, we were on our way back to our hostess' house in Bellevue - which we got lost finding again - the first case of lostness so far on the trip.
Throughout the day, we stopped at drugstores for water, maps (have I mentioned that we collect Easy Finders?), postcards, and to continue my search for my latest makeup obsession (Sally Hansen's Beyond Perfect Collagen Lip Lift in the color Chocolate Therapy. I've got the nail polish, now I'm obsessed with finding the matching lipstick). I'm increasingly convinced that somehow both Pennsylvania and Washington got left out of the distribution of that particular color. ::sigh:: At one store we picked up a bottle of wine because the name - Fisheye - amused me.
Today, we're off to drive past various listings (as opposed to just driving around the areas that we did yesterday) in the Bellingham area that our realtor sent us, and possibly to talk to a mortgage broker or two. Wish us luck!