Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Coast Vacation: Oregon Coast Aquarium

The first week of October I went on vacation with Steve. Ever since I haven't been able to recover the habit of writing regularly, and as stuff piles up, the harder I find it to pick something and just start.

So here I go, I'll just start.

Finally, Steve has some time off, his well-deserved sabbatical. Krissy and I claimed our time. Lucky for us, Steve makes enough moolah to treat to separate vacations. We both were thinking of Canada as we'd both never been there, and the honey that he is, he was willing to go to Canada twice. I quickly realized that I knew more of what I wanted to do here than I do there, starting with the Oregon Coast Aquarium in Newport. Krissy and Steve are now enjoying their vacation in Washington State, relaxing in a house on Otter Lake. Steve said before we left that he was relieved we weren't going to Canada after all, what with their dollar equaling our dollar.

We got a late start on Sunday the 30th, so just checked into our hotel and had dinner and a few drinks. Steve's bed was awful. This was an aging Shiloh Inn. The next morning we found breakfast in the old part of Newport. We're late risers when we have a choice, so it was after noon, and I noticed the taverns we walked past were filled. For the leathery-faced fisherfolk, this was happy hour, their work day already done. A few boozily giggled around a sidewalk bench, greeting us as we walked by, but saying something like, "You need to gain some weight," when we were past. I don't know if she spoke to our backs or to her buds.

Numerous murals covered the sides of the wharf's buildings.

mural in old Newport

We thought about visiting the Undersea Gardens, the Wax Works, and Ripley's Believe It Or Not, but after our late breakfast, we needed the rest of the afternoon for the big attraction. Something for some other vacation....

Steve knew just where to show me the loud sea lions. He doesn't like them so much. They eat otters.

sea lions

There's no telling the lions that these piers aren't for them.

The Coast Aquarium should be a destination place no matter where you live. I know there are other big aquariums in the U.S. but I don't think Oregon's beauty can be rivaled. I wonder how many of them have an underwater tunnel that puts sharks swimming above and below you.

shark tank

For some reason I have a fondness for starfish:

school of fish with starfish

Enjoy the rest of the Newport Aquarium slideshow here.

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