Saturday, June 17, 2017

Crystal Serenity – LA to Vancouver – Day 8 – Friday, June 16, 2017 (Seattle)

We got up at 5:45am (well, Julie did, Bob took a bit longer).  We were sailing into Seattle and it was gorgeous.  We both walked (Julie did about 40 and Bob did about 50 minutes).  

We then got ready and had breakfast in the Lido.  The ship docked at the downtown pier (Pier 66 by Pike Place Market) at 9am.  It’s cool that Crystal was able to get to dock so close to anywhere you could want to go in the city.  When we were sailing in, we saw two larger cruise ships docked outside of town.  We’ve been to Seattle a number of times and decided to do something different.  We were going on a tour to the Boeing factory in Everett Washington.

We left the Stardust lounge at 9:15am for our 45-minute drive to the plant.  Once we got there, we had about an hour or so before our 11:30am tour.  We went up to the deck above to see all of the planes and watching planes take off and land on the 9000 ft. runway.  

This was a huge transport plane, similar to the DreamLifter that they use to haul parts of the 787s that they build.

We then toured the small museum and hung out waiting for the tour to start.  

One thing is they have a rule of no cell phones or cameras or purses or any loose items.  So, we had to check all of that stuff in a free locker.  That also means we don’t have any pictures inside the building.

This is a picture of part of the outside of the construction building as we drove by:

We saw a short 5-minute movie that was essentially a commercial for Boeing and next headed to the bus that would take us to the plant.  The building where they build the planes is the largest building in the world by volume.  It was absolutely gigantic.  35,000 of the 150,000 worldwide Boeing employees work at this facility. We saw where they were building 747’s and 767’s in the first bay (they produced nine 747’s last year – completely from scratch – each plane has around 6 million parts).  We then went to the second stop where they were building 777’s and 787’s.  The 777 is created on what is essentially a factory assembly line.  The 787 is completely different with the major parts built in other places in the world and flown to the plant for assembly.  For example, we saw the wings that were built in Japan brought in from a giant airplane and taken to the building for assembly.  On the 787’s the fuselage is made of composite material and they can assemble a 787 in 21 days.  The 747’s cost approximately $350 million (without any of the interior components – seats, etc).  The 787’s cost approximately $225 million – obviously a bargain.

The tour was quite excellent, we highly recommend it if you ever get to this part of the world and are interested in this sort of thing.

We then got back on the bus and returned to the ship.  Since it was 2:45, we stopped by and got a little snack in the Bistro and then headed back to our room to do some blogging.

At 5pm, we got ready for dinner and decided to have wine on our balcony.  

The weather was terrific, about 67 degrees and partly cloudy.  It was a gorgeous day in Seattle.  On our way to dinner, we stopped and took some pictures of Seattle:

We again went to the dining room for dinner around 6pm.  For appetizer, Julie had the Freshly Baked Lobster Strudel while Bob had the Green Split Pea Soup. 

We decided to have the Panache of Mixed Greens Tossed with Lorenzo Dressing (including mini Monte Cristo Sandwiches).  Julie then asked our waiter if the Lump Crab Cake had green peppers in it.  That ensued a discussion about whether she’d like it or not.  So, they agreed to bring the crab cake as another appetizer portion and Julie switched to the Veal Piccata Milanese for her entrée (the same thing that Bob had).  Julie found the crab cake was great and we both enjoyed the salad.  

However, the veal was huge.  Two pieces of veal, pasta, sauce, etc.  It was just way too much food.  We should have asked for half portions.  Overall, it was the first dish that we were disappointed in (not just the size, but the overall dish was just ordinary).  

For dessert, we both had the Chocolate Turtle Cake a la Mode.

After dinner, we went to the Galaxy lounge for the 8pm showing of The Tourist.  A dance show performed in the dark using computer controlled lighted suits that the dancers wear.  We thought that it was cool to see the high tech.

After that, we retired for the evening.

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