Seattle Space Needle by Andy ChangToday, we took a day trip to Seattle. Well, actually, we were north of Seattle, at the Seattle Premium Outlets mall. It’s a bit tough for Gwen to find certain items of clothing made in sizes that are larger than the predominant female Asian body that Vancouver seems to cater to. The average American body, however, is somewhat larger and the stores accommodate that. So, we went down and did our first-ever “cross-border shopping”.

The drive to Seattle isn’t that far. It’s a little more than a half hour to the border, there’s a delay at the border anywhere from 5 minutes to several hours, and from the border, it’s about 2 hours to Seattle. Today, the wait at the border was about a half hour. Interestingly enough, it was the easiest border crossing I’ve *ever* had (and I’ve had quite a number of them). Just a few questions and a friendly border guard. Almost unheard of!

It was also Aidan’s first international trip. He was getting a little cranky by the time we actually made it to the border guard, but once we were moving it was all good. In fact, on the whole trip (which consisted of 5 hours of driving, several hours of being dragged through the outlet mall, with stops at a McD’s and a couple Interstate rest areas) he was as good as gold. We were a little unsure of how he’d be, since it had been a while since we’d driven any long distance with him (the last time was a trip to Harrison Hot Springs last summer). We didn’t have to break out the video iPod even once!

The outlet store mall wasn’t too exciting. Gwen did manage to find some things that fit, and we each picked up some sneakers from the Adidas store (admittedly at a good discount). There were a number of kids stores too, but the selection and prices were typically what we might find locally when there are sales. So, we came back with all of $140 of goods.

We didn’t know what to expect at the Canadian border (since neither of us had ever done any of this cross-border shopping before. Nothing to it. Standard 3 questions at the border: where do you live, how long were you away, are you bringing back any goods. Answering affirmative to the last question brought another: what value of goods, and on being told the amount, we were told to have a nice day. I though we might be told to pull into customs so that we would pay the GST at the very least, but apparently the amount was too little to bother with. Oh well!

Sadly, no pictures. We forgot both cameras. Who takes pictures at a mall anyway? The shot of the Space Needle was pilfered from Flickr, and the photo credit goes to a Mr. Andy Chang (who seems to be a new dad).