day 39 – Travelogue – Seattle/digression into Berkeley – part two

My son is a punster with words and he once picked fungi as a science term paper project because – wait for it – he’s a fun guy! Get it?  His fourth and fifth grade late great teacher, Ms. Blake, named him Mr. Vocabulary and considered him a walking dictionary, asking him often to give a definition for the class when the rest of the gifted and talented students were stumped.  Does my pride and joy show?

Let me tell you more.

He is amazing with languages and I guess all the video, Nintendo and computer gaming paid off because now I am the mother of a Computer Scientist.   His specialty is coding, using and mapping out computer lingo or whatever these young, super intelligent, computer savvy brains are up to in ‘hip’ and mod Seattle, running the entire Internet as if it were their own personal playground.  Certainly not mine, but I like to come and play, periodically, without an ounce of awareness of how it all works.

Seattle is home to a host of start-ups.  A few names you may recognize: Microsoft, Costco, Amazon, Sur le Table, Boeing, Nordstrom’s, and of course, Starbucks.

They are Very into the Environment.  They recycle more than they put into landfills – true fact.  They are pro-legalization of gay marriage and marijuana.  Seattle screams contemporary, stylishly young and current in its ideas and its values.  I love the vibe.  It was Berkeley to the nth degree.

People think, study, write, gather and read when it’s cold and rainy out I have come to realize.  And in my opinion if you give them inexpensive mass transportation and bad weather like in NY, the Bay Area and Seattle;  you have all of the time in the world to write your memoir, novel or article or read someone else’s.

I suppose a few silly sitcom scripts are written in LA traffic waiting for the cig alert to clear but people just look more intelligent to me in local lamb’s wool scarves, heirloom knitted hats and non-leather vegan gloves and jackets.

Once, on my very first trip to UC Berkeley (or Cal as we Californians call it because it was the first and only University of California for a long time) my son and I went to scout out the campus before he applied.    A bicycle zoomed by us and the cyclist was holding a book and reading while gently sailing down Telegraph Road.   I am convinced you surround yourself and sprout what you find attractive.  No fake wax museums or fantasy amusement parks exist here.  Publishers, new and used bookstores, herbal, homemade body care products and Vegetarian multi -cultured restaurants abound instead.

I saw a lot of professional ( I am assuming homeless) beggars too. Another time, right across the street from my Shattuck Hotel window,  I saw panhandlers lined up for coffee, doughnuts and later on in the day, soup and bread.  I always felt San Diego had a better climate for outdoor living but even though the bay area might get chilly, foggy and damp – they treat everyone warmly, are generous to a fault for every cause that can possibly exist and it is a bevy of superior minds.

What can I say? These are my observations and I encountered much of the same type of energy in Seattle, minus the begging.  More game, fish and dairy in Washington state too.  Which brings me to the topic of food……

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