Coast to Coast

I just got back from a trip out to Seattle. It seems somewhat amazing to me that you can be sitting in an airport in Seattle and then a little more than four hours later you are touching down in Baltimore. While I don’t particularly like to fly anymore, sometimes it is a necessity as traveling in any other manner would take too long. Perhaps one day we will be able to travel like they do on Star Trek where they can scatter your atoms around to a different location and be there in an instant, but if that fantasy ever came to be, I’ll be long gone by then.

Since I last lived out there in 2006, I was told that some things have changed, and while the surroundings with all the beautiful greenery is still the same, I did notice a significant change in the demographics while spending some time in the local Costco. It seems that the influx of people from down south has impacted both coasts as the dark skinned people seem to have increased in number significantly in some of the areas out there. One thing that both coasts seem to have plenty of is the homeless, as Seattle has a large homeless encampment of tents along side of high rises in the downtown Seattle area.

Another peculiarity about the West Coast and the Washington and Oregon areas is that the men in general seem to have lost their manliness as many are meek and let the women run things. I remember even back then walking along the trails like the Wilderness Trail where I lived and would nod and say hello to the people I passed and if I got a response at all, it was usually from the woman as the men seemed hesitant to offer any response. I once asked a girl at a place where I was getting my hair cut that it seems like woman sort of run things out here, and she replied with a “yea, and it works out better that way”. OK. Before I moved out there, I was told this is the case by family and a good friend, and in observation, it seemed in general to be true.

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If one enjoys getting out and enjoying nature, it’s hard to beat the Pacific Northwest with its mountains, forests and trails. The folks out there in the Great Northwest do seem to be quite conservation minded as I noticed again how much cleaner the places are in comparison to Baltimore and other east coast cities. There are trails everywhere as Washington State has the highest rated bike trail system in the country. Quite a bit different than the Gwynns Falls trail where one of the most noteworthy observations is all of the blue Baltimore Tree Ornaments attached to the tree branches after a heavy rain.

One thing that I noticed that both Seattle and Baltimore share is a love of their football teams. On Sundays, everywhere you looked there were people dressed in Seahawk garb. The restaurants would have the games on T.V. and just about everyone seemed to be into it. One thing that takes a bit of getting used to is that the east coast games all started at 10 a.m., so if you were into football, you had to get up a little earlier on Sundays to catch the games. I don’t watch the NFL any longer so it didn’t matter to me, but if you were an avid football fan, and moved from the east coast to the west, it would be quite the adjustment to start watching the games about the time you woke up.

One notion that many have is that it rains all the time in Seattle. While the winter months are usually damp and cool, the summers and even fall can be quite nice as you do get sunny days with low humidity and cool evenings which are great for sleeping. As Eddy Arnold sang in one of his songs, ‘The Bluest Skies You’ve Even Seen Are In Seattle’, and on sunny days, with the combination of Evergreen trees, Blue Sky, and snow covered Mt. Rainier looking as if you could reach out and touch it, one can understand that sentiment as the beauty is quite breathtaking.

It was nice to get back to the ‘Left Coast’ to see family and enjoy the beauty and recall the time and places where I lived for a while..if only they could figure out a way to Star Trek me from Baltimore to Seattle.

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