Long before coronavirus, there was Aaron, there was Elina, and there was a first date by bus, boat, bike, and streetcar.

Aaron asked Elina out on a date shortly after she moved to Seattle.

“I wanted to show her the best of Seattle, and the best view of the city is from the water taxi,” said Aaron.

Given that a water taxi ride from downtown Seattle to West Seattle is only 10 minutes, he had to add a few more activities to the agenda.

“We started with a bus ride from South Lake Union to the water taxi ferry terminal, and we brought our bikes. We took the water taxi to West Seattle, enjoyed the view, then did a bike ride to Alki Beach to show her the mini Statue of Liberty. Then we took the water taxi back to downtown Seattle and hopped on the Seattle Streetcar to get to South Lake Union.”

Aaron and Elina in front of West Seattle's Statue of Liberty
Aaron and Elina in front of West Seattle’s Statue of Liberty; photo courtesy of Aaron and Elina

Elina was impressed by the date, and with Aaron.

“After we returned downtown, we rode along the Elliot Bay trail and even stopped at this tiny rose garden. It was as if every little detail was planned out – but somehow he winged the entire thing!”

She was also impressed with the region’s transit options.

“I couldn’t believe how quickly we got from a bustling downtown neighborhood to a beach on what I thought was an island at the time. Living in New York City, buses are a lot less reliable. I was amazed at how quick and easy it was to take transit here, and you can also bring your bike. Also, the fact that you can take the light rail from the airport directly to downtown is rare,” said Elina. “Three years later, and I’ve never bothered to get a car, even though I used to work in Bothell.”

Exploring the region through transit has become a favorite pastime of Aaron and Elina. They’ve recreated their maiden voyage to West Seattle several times, taken Trailhead Direct to go hiking, and brought their mountain bikes on the bus to Swan Creek Park in Tacoma.

Though the pandemic has them staying at home more, the romance has continued to blossom, and the adventuring has continued.

“We mostly work from home now, so we’ve been taking transit a lot less, but we have invested in electric scooters.”

Bike enthusiasts Aaron and Elina smile in a meadow while wearing helmets
Photo courtesy of Aaron and Elina

“One of the things I like about transit is that even if I could drive [to a destination] in the same amount of time, it gives us a chance to focus on each other and not the driving. We can look at each other, talk to each other, look at the view, and chill,” said Aaron.

“Elina and I share a passion for adventure and exploring cute neighborhoods and biking trails. The beauty of the bus is we can be spontaneous, find someplace new, and take one-way trips. We have no car to go pick up, so we can end up on the other side of the city and ride home a different way from where we came.”

Aaron and Elina model their bikes in front of a lake
Photo courtesy of Aaron and Elina