How to experience Seattle

Written by: Sophie Holeman
“So, you better believe it. I’m totally going to take you up on your services, what shall we call it …a Sophie Tour?” This was the sentence that set into motion a whirlwind adventure that would later bring forth multiple days of local Seattle exploration. Midway through a romantic dinner date in late November of 2007, I found myself deep in sarcastic conversation on how well of a tour guide I could make myself and how I could charge a steep fee for taking visitors with me on local, lighthearted Seattle adventures. Vocally playing with my date over a plate of steamed clams in a lemon butter cream sauce, I told him that I charged $300 for a half a day of Seattle voyaging, and $500 for a full day and night’s worth of local bistros, Seattle Art Museum, French creperies, parks (includes free chat with local Seattle hobos) and a personal pairing of Sophie’s favorite dinner spot with a personally chosen bottle of red (I don’t care for white …even with halibut or scallops). After deliberating on the particular logistics, my date (I won’t reveal his name for his own protection) threw up his arms in a display of glorious invention mixed with personal satisfaction as he decided that I would spearhead this new business venture, and he would take on the responsibility of making himself my personal manager/accountant. I leaned back in my chair, took a sip from my glass, smiling contentedly as I daydreamed of my newfound career. That night, after giving me a kiss at my front door stop, my date made sure to remind me that he got dibs on my first Sophie Tour. He scheduled the first tour with me for the following Friday. I was totally jazzed and ready to make this tour happen. The following week flew by like the Kentucky Derby, and it was Friday morning before I remembered that I owed my date the first Sophie Tour. My alarm buzzed at 8:00a.m. and I jolted awake, running around my room and picking out something to wear, hoping that the garments matched in some way shape or form. I had completely forgotten that my date had scheduled a Full-Day Sophie Tour, which I had firmly decided over the bottle of wine present at last weekend’s dinner that the Full-Day tour would last a FULL day, commencing at 9:00a.m. and finishing at either the wee hours of the night, or at 9:00p.m. sharp (of course, depending on the client at hand). So, as I scuffled to get ready in a timely manner, while making myself somewhat presentable, I also jotted down various places and points of interest that would make for a successful tour. So what if my first client was someone who I’d already spent a couple of romantic evenings with and who was on a non-payment set-up. I was doing this first tour as practice, an educational, make-sure-all-my-ducks-are-in-a-row-for-next-time kind of thing. And I wanted to get it right. I was just finishing squeezing into my blue jeans, bobby pins in my teeth, as I pulled my hair into a low bob and finished it off with a red knitted cap. Perfect, no need to wash my hair. Looking somewhat professional. Got my purse. Got my list of places to stop along the way. Got a little cash (maybe I’ll make him pay …I am doing this as a learning experience for me/charitable cause for him, right?). The doorbell rang. Okay, got my date too. Let’s do this. …To be continued in next week’s publication. How to experience Seattle