One that, if as advertised, could manifest itself as the single most memorable moment in his young life? One that is close to home, and just happens to be at his favorite place to hang out too? Well, we did. And
Pffft! Minor details to a parent determined to create lasting memories for his first born child. That's because the Pirates were landing at Seattle's Alki Beach. If you aren't quite getting the significance of this event, then perhaps it has been a long time since you were 3 years old and completely ape feces over everything Pirate.
So, like I said, Lukas wasn't feeling terribly well, but the Landing was nearby and we figured we could just simply arrive, see them storm the beach, then leave for home for some lunch and an early nap.
Err...not so fast.
Despite the insane parking (I finally just parked about 15ft from a STOP sign and decided to roll the dice on getting a ticket) we did eventually make our way onto the heavily crowded beach where there were several sailing boats out on the water firing off canons. An attack seemed imminent! So I hoisted my Jolly son onto my shoulders, in the direct sun, to get a better view and walked towards the front. That was at about 11:30. I assumed the landing would be any minute.
About 45 minutes later, with Lukas now fidgety, tired, and frowning, we received word that the Pirates were finally on their way. They were in a separate ship, around a bend. Once again the excitement built as we saw them approach from a distance. We let it pass that they were coming in aboard a military style landing craft and not a masted sailing ship adorned with a walkable plank.
Then, just as all the sailing ships cleared a direct path for the Pirate ship to storm the beach, Lukas said to me "Daddy, I want down. I'm hungry". Now? After all this, he wants down? "In a minute buddy." I replied "The PIRATES are about to land!" It was at that point that, not unlike Fonzie gearing up to jump the barrels in that famous Happy Days scene, the Pirate ship.....motored right on past the opening.
After a completing a big circle, the ship once again approached. The crowd tensed. And once again the ship sped right on past the opening to the audible dismay of those gathered. "Come on, land already!" Someone nearly shouted. Perhaps the Bucaneers were finishing off one final round of liquid courage. Then, after a second full circle the Pirate landing craft finally turned and approached the beach. A cheer rose from the crowd.
Then, in an instant, they were upon us.
A whole slew of authentically dressed pirates, many looking old and full of biscuits & grog, slowly hopped off of the landing craft into the water huffing, puffing, and flashing their swords. One paused to dump water out of his boot with a smile, while another immediately walked over and hugged someone in the crowd. Though certainly a spectacle, it wasn't exactly what we had anticipated.
"They are friendly Pirates!" Mrs. LIAYF explained to Lukas who remained sullen and quiet on my shoulders. "Is he enjoying this?" I asked. "Yeah, I think so." She replied. The Pirates then heralded the arrival of their captain (a dead ringer for Depps Jack Sparrow) with song as he was driven onto the shore not 20 feet away from us. And with that the show was over. Thankfully. We quickly got Lukas out of the sun and stopped to feed him much needed lunch.
Seems that was all the treasure he needed to once again lift his spirits.