No need to send postcards

Seattle is a bizarre and wonderful place. As I sit here writing my blog I can look out the window of the coffee shop and see the Space Needle. The city is painting the top of the monument bright yellow for this weekend’s celebration of a local record company. As I contemplate this oddity two girls are walking by. One is dressed like Strawberry Shortcake, the animated children’s character. She is wearing pink gingham, a poufy skirt and a bonnet. Her friend is wearing a similar outfit with a different color scheme. Any window in the city will provide views like these.

Outside I hear the traffic going down the street and I also hear the distinctive sound of a skateboard as it coasts down one of our long hills. I’ve never lived in a place before where so many people ride skateboards, and here I know quite a few people who commute to work on these wheeled contraptions. Some of these people are in their forties and fifties, so this is not just a trend for the teenagers.

Inside the coffee shop I admire the artwork on the barista’s arms. He’s got a mermaid twisting her pretty little tail down his left arm, and his right hosts an inked aviary. I am too compulsive to get tattooed myself, but I enjoy looking at the designs that others have chosen. I think a lot of them are like me, because I notice that most people with tattoos have many of them. I’d never get one because once I did I would feel compelled to fill every centimeter of my skin with designs. Then I’d have to try to obliterate them so I could add more. I know what some of my own weaknesses are, so I think it’s better for me to stay off that path entirely. In this city people without tattoos are a minority, and I find that intriguing.

I think about this kind of thing a lot, because I’ve lived in a number of different regions as an adult. Each place has its own flavor, and I savor the differences. I sometimes feel like a tourist in my own country, my eyes and ears open for new experiences. It’s an inexpensive way to travel, and I enjoy it. There’s so much to explore!

Your assignment, should you choose to accept it:

140.  What makes your city or town the special place that it is? How do you think people are a bit different from other places? Share your insights with someone else and compare your perspectives.

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