Unequivocally Ambiguous

Humorous Stories on Parenting, Culture and Life

Destination Weddings with Toddlers in Tow

by | Mar 14, 2024 | Travel | 0 comments

Finding something to do so I could say I was in Seattle. Part I

If you go to a destination wedding, you can’t just go to the wedding because it would feel like you didn’t go to the destination.

I didn’t want that to happen when I was in Seattle for my cousin’s wedding.

But with two toddlers, when we travel, we still need to navigate flights, sleep schedules, dietary restrictions, fighting sleep in a new place, dressing the girls in uncomfortable dresses, saying hello to friends, family, and a mountain of strangers, and carting around an even bigger mountain of all our “necessary” travel items.

Because of this, my wife and I have different philosophies on destination weddings with kids.

I believe we should check at least one destination despite all the madness.

My wife likes bank robbers’ approach: “Get in and get out before someone ends up with ink all over their face.”

But I’m visionary, and that’s why I didn’t share my vision with my wife when I dropped her off for Amélie’s nap time.

I had plans for Jovie and me to check out something, anything, so we could say we had been in Seattle.

When I got to the hotel, I parked my rented car and let it run while my wife got Amelie out of her seat. When she asked me where I was going, I told her, “I will figure something out here. We won’t be long.”

Once she was gone, my daughter and I started driving towards our destination. It felt good to be on the freeway, driving my rented car, which is another thing I love about traveling: cars that are not mine.

This time, we rented a white Buick. It took one and a half parking spaces wherever we went; it had a sunroof and a fancy GPS center console.

It even had one of those buttons that turned the car on. Those are fancy. They are useless. I don’t know who thought we needed to make turning a car easier than it already was. But they did it. Now, instead of holding your keys horizontally for an extra foot, inserting them in a slot, and twisting, you can just drop them in the cup holder.

Now, let’s see if you can figure out where I was headed.

Close your eyes and tell me what you think of when you think of Seattle.

Pike Place Market? Too fishy.

Mt rainier? Too far and too nature-y.

Original Starbucks? No coffee nor lines for my daughter-y.

The space needle? Been there, done that-y. It’s just like being in a high-rise, but one that spins. If I wanted to feel unsafe at the top of a building, I’d go to San Francisco’s Millenium Tower, which is no longer sinking at the corner but now sinking in the center.

I wanted something new.

I went to Chihuly Garden and Glass.

My friend Kyle told me about it, and even though I didn’t know anything about it, I went because Chihuly is a blast to pronounce.

I had never heard of Chihuly before, but apparently, it is a whole thing. Dale Chihuly’s claim to fame came after blowing a lot of (let me finish) glass. He elevated blowing glass to fine art, and he is known internationally for his many museum exhibitions and large architectural installations.

Once I got there, I parked the car, pushed the button to turn it off, turned around to ask my daughter if she was ready to have some fun, and then looked for the keys.

The keys were nowhere to be found. I had driven there without them, and my wife was back at the hotel with them and our napping baby.

I didn’t want this trip to be one of those when you get close, and then you quit. I had done that already when I went to the Gardens of Versailles, and I saw the line and the price tag.

I asked the guide, “What’s behind the line?”
He said, “More gardens.”
And I said, “I have one of those at home.”
And an hour later, I was back in Paris.

But not this time. I was moving forward with this adventure. I took my daughter out of her seat, put on my backpack, and locked the car.

I tried to line up transport before going in. I called my mom and my sister, but they were getting ready for the wedding at the salon. I called my one friend there, but he was out with his daughters.

I didn’t call anyone in the wedding because I didn’t want to be the one guy saying, “Hey, I know you’re helping put a wedding together, but can you help me? I forgot my keys and am in downtown Seattle.”

I called my friend again and asked if he thought the Lyft driver would let me put my four-year-old daughter in the car without a car seat. He believed it would be okay.

I ran through the math in my head one more time, and I felt like I had enough time to check out the museum, get a Lyft back to the hotel, pick up my rental, and go back to the hotel to get ready. I would just have to go through the exhibit like a mouse on methamphetamines.

The Chihuly Garden and Glass galleries were installed in dark rooms with lighting only on the blown (let me finish) glass. The vibrant color gave the space a surreal feel, almost as if we were walking at night in Willy Wonka’s factory, but only with the emergency lights on.

We walked through the glasshouse and the garden, quickening our pace. Once out on the street, I proceeded with my next plan of operation “Make it to the wedding on time so my mom doesn’t think I am a bad family member”: I requested a Lyft.


Leave a Reply

Recent Articles

Discover more from Unequivocally Ambiguous

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading