Sky of Blue, Sea of Green…

15390853_10211460213602920_8728460629010838251_nThis is another one of those posts that is all about the history of my soccer enjoyment. For a Seattle Sounders Soccer fan and season ticket holder our 2016 season ended with our boys capturing the Gold Cup. The thing that makes it amazing is that we were in last place in the middle of the season with any hope of making the playoffs questionable. Then from the bottom we had a turn around, a new coach, a new player, a new inspiration. Injured players recuperated and came back strong. The team had a strong determination and new vision. On Tuesday December 13th Josh, Laura and I drove downtown to be a part of this history and enjoy the parade and rally. Josh and Laura just got back from Toronto on Sunday and were able to be at the final game and cheer on the Sounders with 2000 or so fans. It was now time for the Washington State Fans to come out and give the team the thunderous appreciation we wished they could hear in Toronto!

15492219_10154179358653589_437076264013511389_nThis photo above is from their victory celebration in Toronto, Canada.

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sounders-parade-011We found our spot close to Seattle Center and waited for the parade to come to us. Josh bought this flag to take to Toronto with him and Laura since it has a likeness to the U.S.A. flag.

sounders-parade-023I turned around at one point and saw some of our friends from Northshore Community Church.

sounders-parade-020This little guy was so cute. By the way Stefan Frei, our goalie, was the MVP of the game with his save of year that will go down in soccer history, too.

sounders-parade-029Finally the trolleys with the players approached with all the fans along the route joining in the procession.

sounders-parade-069Nicolas Lodeiro holding the MLS Cup out the window for all of us to see. The added flag is from his home country of Uruguay. Lodeiro is a player who came to our team at our lowest point and with his playing ethic and spirit helped our team make a turn around.

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sounders-parade-090Some past players that the Sounders fans always enjoy seeing, Kasey Keller (former goalie) and Roger Levesque, a fan favorite for many years who is now retired from soccer.

sounders-parade-092We met up with more friends and joined the throng headed to the Seattle Center for the rally.

sounders-parade-096Look at that green beard! This is part of the Sounders band.

sounders-parade-110Walking under the monorail tracks to the center.

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15541882_10154191263908589_55905692662023760_nThe Trolleys stopped and our team captain Osvoldo Alonso raised the MLS Cup Champions flag next to the statue of Chief Sealth (Chief Seattle), whom the city of Seattle is named after with historical controversy. Alonso is a Cuban born soccer player who defected to the U.S.A. and is now a citizen of the United States.

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15400454_10211381445397780_3978112134080520953_nOur group selfie amongst the sea of green! You might be wondering how all these people were able to get off work to attend this parade and rally in the middle of a work day. Brad Evans issued this for all the Sounders fans…

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Our daughter in law actually submitted this to her boss to fly to Toronto last Friday. He said it was a very compelling reason to miss work. This excuse form was used by some for the parade and rally, too.

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sounders-parade-141This is Zach Scott, another fan favorite who has been with the team from the beginning. He led the crowd in the Jingle Bells Song the team has always sung in the locker room after an away victory. This was Zach’s last season with the Sounders. He will be missed.

Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle all the way, Oh what fun it is to see Seattle win away, hey! It was fun to hear a crowd of thousands sing along.

15401060_1200744436629254_9196882971506577376_n2016 Seattle Sounders MLS Cup Champions! Look at that sea of supporters behind them!

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15390679_10154194292473589_572307301539503003_nThe following day the Sounders flag was raised by Coach Schmetzer and Governor Inslee at the capitol building in Olympia, Washington.

It was a fun event to attend and we were happy to brave the crowds and the cold to be a part of history. For the record and in case anyone out there is concerned, I do not worship soccer or soccer players but I enjoy soccer and have an appreciation for the skill and stamina it takes to play this sport. Since watching our sons and daughter play soccer in the 90’s I’ve grown in the understanding of the game and have learned to appreciate the development of play between the players on the field.

Now I’m headed to the kitchen table to finish my Christmas cards so I can get them in the mail tomorrow! We are below freezing in temps here on our hill in the Seattle suburbs. Brrr. Good day to stay inside and work on our Christmas greetings. Hope you all are cozy and warm.

Maybe…just maybe…

…I’ve missed my calling. I could have been a tour guide.

Seattle D&L 021The Fremont Troll who lives under the Aurora Bridge is a must see when you visit our area. You can read all about it’s origins here.

Seattle D&L 020My new nephew by marriage, Lenny, had never been to Seattle so we had to show him the top picks in our area.

Seattle D&L 013Sorry, couldn’t resist the “top picks” reference!

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Seattle D&L 017The Troll could use a little cleaning up because it’s hard to see the full size red Volkswagon bug that is under his left hand without straining.

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Seattle D&L 011You really get great views of downtown Seattle from Kerry Park on Queen Anne Hill. We never miss this photo opportunity with our out of town company. I never resist photo opportunities of our “in town” kids, either.

Seattle D&L 009My niece Debbee is in the bright blue coat nestled in amongst Auntie Lana, Cousin Laura and Auntie Ellen. I missed the shot of her and Lenny here but made sure to get plenty of the two of them at some other favorite tourist spots in our area.

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And of course we didn’t miss out on some great local food, either…

Seattle FoodWe started with some delicious sustenance that carried us through all our adventures of the afternoon at the Portage Bay Cafe in the South Lake Union area of Seattle. All seven of us would recommend this restaurant. They had lots of great Gluten Free choices for my niece, too.  Before we met up for brunch Josh, Laura, Debbee and Lenny had visited Pike Place Market, the original Starbucks and the Gum wall. After the troll we headed to the Ballard Locks but that’s another post coming soon…

I have several days off before my next tour guiding gig. I’m looking forward to a week from today when I get to show some VIP’s a different part of our city. Of course you’ll hear all about it and it could be that you’ll hear about it from a few more sources than me since several of my VIP visitors are bloggers, too. Stay tuned! Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone!