A rainy day this morning that cleared up later.  I don’t mind the rain at all.  We are Rain City, are we not? (Jet City when Boeing was still headquartered here, and the Emerald City for tourists.  I’m sure we cannot be Rain City for tourists!)

It was a somewhat busy day, but not too hectic.  I bought a Mandarin phrasebook (cover picture, yes, it’s the inevitable panda on the little guy’s shirt), a Hong Kong book and a Chinese character study book.   Sounds like I’m serious about learning some Chinese but all I hope for is to make a start with, 200 characters !

My passport and multiple-entry visa will arrive tomorrow (the first one only allowed two entries, and I used both), but I went ahead today and applied for an ‘enhanced’ drivers license that can be used to cross the border into Canada and Mexico by car, ferry or rail (or foot!).   Just in case I have to send in my passport and I want to go up to Vancouver for the weekend.   I was allowed to smile see? : ) which  surprised me because I thought smiling distorts the biometrics (likes between the eyes, nose and mouth) on the picture.

Tonight I went to a nice neighborhood bar for cocktails, beers and pub food with my very good very best friends (you know who you are! thanks! it is such a treat to hang out with you).

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