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Jean Louise Finch Donating Member (651 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 12:09 AM
Original message
Tell me everything there is to know about Seattle!
It's becoming increasingly probable that I just might move there sometime in the next 18 months. I've never ever been -- not to anywhere in the pacific northwest!

The good!
The great!
The hilariously awesome!

And IF there is POSSIBLY anything bad about it, maybe let me know that, too.

Jean Louise
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RevolutionStartsNow Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 02:05 AM
Response to Original message
1. Their football team just lost to the 49ers tonight!
And I couldn't be happier!

But seriously, my brother lives there and I think it's beautiful. If you're not from somehwere rainy, it could be a shock. But if you dig intense weather, you'll like it.

I find it incredibly beautiful; the part my bro lives in is called Issaquah, just northeast of the city I believe.

Lots of great bands play there, if you like music. It's a must-stop for most tours.

It's not far from Vancouver, which is in my opinion one of the most beautiful cities in the world.

It's very liberal.

Oh, and the Niners beat their football team tonight! :evilgrin:
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Jean Louise Finch Donating Member (651 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 02:47 AM
Response to Reply #1
4. Mwa ha ha ha
I will have to rearrange my whole sports team way of thinking -- I'm from NH and went to school in Boston so I'm only barely aware that there exist teams other than the Red Sox (and sports other than baseball). Would be weird to live somewhere where they're not the center of the universe.

Thanks for the tips! I am most excited to go investigating; I love love intense whether and have been missing it terribly. I have also been missing live music terribly, so this is just sounding better and better.

Rumor has it it's just four hours from Whistler, which opens up a whole other world of delight.

Thanks!
Jean Louise
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benny05 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 02:08 AM
Response to Original message
2. Trolley is the best way to get a quick Tourist view
Especially in getting a stop by the "dog treats" place and to see amazon.com from a distance. Acquarium stop sucks, not worth the money. Pike Market great.
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Jean Louise Finch Donating Member (651 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 02:48 AM
Response to Reply #2
5. Coolio
I don't know if I'll get to check it out as a tourist before I move there (IF I move there), but in any case I'll keep it in mind. Trolleys are delightful!

Thanks!
Jean Louise
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Patiod Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 11:44 AM
Response to Reply #2
23. Boat is the best way to get a not-so-quick Tourist view
Just got back, and took a wonderful tour of the locks. Learned a lot about Seattle, especially its maritime history and current maritime industries.
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pokerfan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 02:22 AM
Response to Original message
3. Art Buchwald once said
"Living in Seattle is like dating the most beautiful woman in the world... who always has a cold."

Seriously, the summers are beautiful, but the winters are long, drizzly and grey. Which will just make you appreciate the summers all the more.

Very cosmopolitan and funky. Great downtown and music scene.

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Jean Louise Finch Donating Member (651 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 02:50 AM
Response to Reply #3
6. Long, drizzly and grey sounds like
heaven to me. It sounds even better than the beautiful summers!

Does it get very cold in the winter? Does it snow or is it just that damp cold raininess?

oh, and I really like that quote, it's hilarious.

Jean Louise
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pokerfan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 03:45 AM
Response to Reply #6
13. Cold enought to snow a little
Mostly rain. When it does snow even an inch, the city is completely paralyzed and you don't have to go to work.

Snow Day!!!

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Jean Louise Finch Donating Member (651 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 03:50 AM
Response to Reply #13
14. Oh glorious snow days!
How I remember them!

We had a coup day earlier this year and it FELT just like a snow day! We were actually completely outraged that we had less days off for a freaking military coup that we used to get off for Boston blizzards.



Jean Louise
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Patiod Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 11:48 AM
Response to Reply #6
24. My college had the same precipitation as Seattle
They don't tell you this, but because of the way it's set in the mountains, everything that passes over Pennsylvania dumps its moisture on Penn State.

I wore out 2 different pairs of LL Bean duckshoes while I was there, and LIVED in my hooked slicker and hooded waterproof coats. Hair was UP all the time. You lean how to live with the weather.

I noticed the people out in Seattle had it all down pat: appropriate footwear, appropriate (NorthFace or REI) clothing, appropriate headgear, appropriate hairstyles.
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chknltl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 02:55 AM
Response to Original message
7. Its DAMNED WINDY right now
This is NOT a good thing!!!
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Jean Louise Finch Donating Member (651 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 02:57 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. oh right!
egads, stay inside and stay warm. I hope everything is ok! Maybe the time has come to turn out the lights and read scary stories by candlelight?

Stay safe!!
Jean Louise
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chknltl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 03:02 AM
Response to Reply #8
9. Lights still on...
power flickered and knocked me offline a bit ago. Just me and the dog...no scary stories needed...we are plenty worried. My neighbor lost a BIG tree about 30 minutes ago...took out his fence and is blocking the road in front of our houses. Another tree in his back yard is threatening the backside of my home if it falls. Wind is supposed to gust up to 60 mph for another hour....
THIS SUCKS
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Jean Louise Finch Donating Member (651 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 03:06 AM
Response to Reply #9
10. I just saw your other thread
That sounds seriously terrifying, no scary stories needed is definitely the case. Please take care!! Fingers crossed seriously much that your tree will stay strong...it's a good sign that it has made it thus far. It won't actually hit YOU if it falls, will it? Maybe you should move into the basement?

Be safe -- I hope you can stay on line. Keep us posted.

Jean Louise
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chknltl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 03:14 AM
Response to Reply #10
11. I moved into the spare bedroom...
...might be safe here if tree comes down. It is aimed directly at my bedroom should it do the same thing that the one in the front did. The spare bedroom has the computor...it would be safer in the livingroom but no computor...wanted to share I guess. Dog not to thrilled with this either.
Plan for tomorrow: Get that damned tree trimmed after helping out with tree now blocking road..
I seem to be on the edge of a power outage...I can see nothing but darkness in the valley below me. Normally all well lit up residential area..
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Jean Louise Finch Donating Member (651 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 03:27 AM
Response to Reply #11
12. oh man
you're giving me the heebie jeebies from half a world away...Looking out on all that darkness must be a bit eery. Lucky that your power has stayed on but if you start thinking you're going to be a lot safer, move yourself and your pup to the living room! Have you got water in the bathtubs and candles and batteries in case the power goes? We used to lose power for 10 days at a time; always the last to get sorted.

your username is funny given the concern that the sky (or at least the tree in it) is ACTUALLY going to fall! Maybe it's a good sign!

Stay safe!
Jean Louise
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chknltl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 03:58 AM
Response to Reply #12
15. Thanks
I just went out for a walk. I have NEVER heard winds like this. I have been living in this area for 40 of my 53 years. I think the wind may be quieting a bit, it's done that a few times then picks up. It was really bad at about 4:30 pm then slackened enough for the Seahawks game. It picked up again after game was over and stayed that way until a few moments ago. News claims we are at the peak. So far at least three have died from this but I am willing to bet that number will go up when damage assesments come in later this morning. It is 1:45 AM now. Never mind about wind easing...it's gusting back up again. I estimate the tree in front was about 5-6 stories tall. It snapped about 5 feet up. Tree threatening my bedroom is about 4-5 stories tall and maybe 30 feet away. I've plenty of bottled water in fridge and my trusty flashlight now stays within arms reach.
Not gonna venture back to the bathroom for awhile though...that might not be a safe area if that damned tree decides to go. Yeah thought about the chknltl name a bit myself. Came up with it because it incorporates part of my name and because I have been goin nuts spreading the word about depleted uranium oxide which is poisoning large chunks of our planet. I often feel like a chicken little but that has not stopped me.

I am wondering about Seattlegirl. She is usually posting here in the lounge at this late hour...haven't heard from her tonight. I hope she fairs well
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Jean Louise Finch Donating Member (651 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 04:02 AM
Response to Reply #15
16. Well, good luck
I am just leaving work so won't be online for the rest of the day...but will be sending all possible good vibes your way. I hope that everything goes ok for you and Seattlegirl and all the other Pacific NW DUers. Fingers crossed that things won't get any worse for anyone. I hope you can get some sleep.

Peace.
Jean Louise
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chknltl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 06:17 AM
Response to Original message
17. Wind is down...Let me tell you about the Pacific Northwest
Nothing better to do for awhile...I hope you see this when you go back to work. The Pacific Northwest is generally considered to be Oregon, Washington and Idaho. I live in Washington so I can speak a bit about this state.
The area is divided into 3 distinct regions: The coast, the I-5 corridor, Inland Empire. Between the coast and the I-5 corridor are the Olympic Mountains, between the I-5 corridor and the Inland Empire are the Cascade Mountains.

People: We are considered to be a "blue" or Democrat state but that is only because roughly 60% of the population lives along the I-5 corridor which is 90% Democrat. The coastal area is likely highly Democrat as well but the Inland Empire is largely Republican..(perhaps over 75%). Everywhere folks are VERY friendly...well maybe a little less so on I-5 during rush hour which lasts about 3 hours twice a day...I blame Starbucks for the decrease in friendliness during those hours...sane folks avoid going out anywhere around I-5 if they can avoid it at those times.

Washington State: We are a fairly clean state, folks seem to be a little less inclined to litter lately. (Ive been here off and on since 1963...things were not always so clean around here). We take pride in our scenic areas, the mountains, the ocean, Puget Sound, The Columbia and Snake Rivers, The San Juan Islands and etc., there are few areas in this state that are not scenic...well none that I can think of. We are pretty big on outdoor recreation around here too. If you love the outdoors we've plenty to occupy you with here.

Big Cities: We have Seattle of course and thirty miles south is Tacoma, (where I live). The two cities may as well be connected because there is nothing but residences and commercial stuff between the two. (Seattlites sometimes feel as if Tacoma is their dirty back yard...we are not, although historically the two have been heated rivals). Seattle is the bigger of the two with a decidedly better nightlife for those into that sort of thing and they do have the 3 major sports teams. Seattle is the home of Starbucks...the world may one-day forgive us for that but not in my lifetime I suspect. Seattle is a visual feast too but I do not discount any other city in Washington...we all have our charms.

Also along the I-5 corridor are Bellingham, Everett and Olympia. Bellingham is the smaller of the three with about a quarter of its population college students, (maybe only a slight exaggeration).
It is just south of the Canadian border with little in the way of a nightlife but boy oh boy does it rock during the day. Within easy reach of Canada, the Cascades, the San Juan Islands and Skagit Valley it is no wonder that those college kids skip school so often...I certainly did when I went there back in the early '80s. This town shares with Everett and Olympia the little-city/big-town atmosphere in that it seems as though everybody knows everybody else. Where Seattle is the workhorse, these three seem a little more laid back. Olympia and Bellingham have large college populations so one sees a lot of folks that age. It makes both places feel very "progressive"

Inland Empire has Spokane, Tri Cities and Moses Lake. Each city is unique but hard working is a feeling one gets when in any of the three. Agriculture is very important to the economy of these cities but I've noticed that the younger folks seem to take the words "PARTY HARDY" to a level beyond belief. (I lived there when I was in my early 20s, folks my age back then worked then partied, sleep was rarely an option...somehow I survived that). The landscape is wide open with rolling hills of wheat for as far as the eye can see in the south, a scab-lands area in the center and dry-land pine forests to the north. Each area is stunningly gorgeous in my estimation...being a photographer may be jading my opinion though because some folks feel that it is mostly barren-too hot in the summer and too cold in the winter!

Mt. Rainier may not be in the geographic center of the state but it the one place everyone in this state has made a pilgrimage to at least once. I believe there may be a law that dictates all residents must take their out of state visitors to "THE MOUNTAIN" or face deportation, or some-such. It really is one of our most cherished possessions and we each own a piece. Please visit there when you come. If you can, try going to "Sunrise" in mid-late July. The fields of flowers are outrageous and the mountain is just SO DAMNED BIG!! "Paradise" is just as nice but seems to get more tourists but the mountain is still SO DAMNED BIG!! Did I mention how big it is yet? That is usually the response I get when taking folks up there for their first visit. Years ago I used to run them up Copper Creek road. As we approached the road the mountain was hidden for a good many miles prior to the junction. As we wound up Copper Creek road, we would see the Nisqually River Valley unfold below us. Higher up we would easily see to the south across the valley: Mt Adams and Mt. St.Hellens. Then as we crested the ridge and rounded a little knoll BAM!!! Mt. Rainier would just about fill our windshield. It was always a religious moment for my visitors. Sadly that road is no longer open to automobiles but it still makes a fine day hike.

Ok so that is my 5-cent tour of Washington... if you noticed that I am madly in love with her you are right...I am not alone in feeling that way and we do not mind sharing. Sometimes younger folks are a bit disappointed in their cities around here but then younger folks just have itchy feet I think...I know I did but I was blessed with the ability to look higher than my own toes, (even as a kid), so I noticed just how beautiful my environs really were.

It is now 3:45AM here, the wind died down and gusted back up twice while I wrote this. It seems to have calmed down again and that scary tree out back still stands. It is likely safe enough to visit the bathroom now. Tomorrow I'll be out helping clear a tree off the road, I wonder what other adventures daylight will bring. That valley below me is still dark, it shouldn't be so as it is all residential. I suspect that there will be quite a few chainsaws in operation around here tomorrow. Thanks for chattin with me earlier, I was genuinely concerned about that tree... You asked about the area so you get stuck with my 5 cent tour. I hope you liked it.
c

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Zomby Woof Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:20 AM
Response to Reply #17
19. Puget Sound is polluted
Or at least that's why your governor wants to clean it up. That isn't taking pride... that's taking it for granted. Damn shame.

And what climbers have done to Rainier is a travesty. Don't get me started on Tim Eyman either. He hijacked your state government and trashed the transportation system.

Washington got really sad over the past decade, especially after 2000.
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chknltl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 09:53 AM
Response to Reply #19
20. My dear ZombieWoof...
The OP wanted oppinions...I gave her mine...I LOVE this state. I take no shame from that statement. All states have their problems, I am quite sure that you could write gobs of negative things about the state you live in right now. I am aware of gobs of bad stuff in my beloved Washington as well. I am quite happy to be here as are a great many others. Generally I enjoy reading your posts,(A LOT and I think you have a cool name too),...I am willing to bet if you put your mind to it you could find SOMETHIN nice to say about Washington state. I truly wish no flame war here...especially after what I went through last night. Came mighty close to havin no chknltl to kick around so I am especially pleased to be living in this state this very morning. Maybe after a little sleep I may feel more like discussing these problems you have mentioned but right now I have a neighbor who may need a hand removing a tree from the road, daylight is just startin and I think lendin an able hand to be pretty important right now. I sincerely hope you find the happiness you seek in your new location.
btw I don't disagree with many of your points either, and I think Eyman is a ass.
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Jean Louise Finch Donating Member (651 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-17-06 08:54 PM
Response to Reply #17
28. You survived!
Hello chknltl,

I was watching the news over the weekend and saw some crazy ass photos of the Seattle area; worried that one of the fallen trees was YOURS. I am so glad to hear that you survived the craziness of the storm. How is the clean-up going?

Thanks so much for your more than 5 cent tour! This is the good stuff I was looking for; tis likely I would be working with UW, and I don't know quite where that fits in to the area, but goodness me, it sounds like paradise. I'm sure it has problems just like any other place, but anywhere where you can get to a big ass beautiful mountain sounds like heaven to me. I've been living in a huge, polluted, gridlocked city for three years, where the outdoors is simply NOT an option, so this all sounds like heaven. I miss being in a place where everything is outdoors-oriented. I've been daydreaming looking at houseboats -- way out of range of anything I could ever afford, but it makes me happy just knowing people live that way. Do you ski? I get goosebumps reading the snow reports at Mt Baker.

Thanks really so much for sharing your happy slice of life. If I come, I'll let you know! It won't be for another year or so, but my partner already bought the Lonely Planet and we've been daydreaming about riding our bikes and going to yoga classes.

Jean Louise
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Zomby Woof Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:12 AM
Response to Original message
18. It used to a good place to live
In the late 80's/early 90's. I moved there in '88 before it became hip to do so. Before it got out of hand with the national overexposure.

Then everyone had to move there. Sapped it of a lot of character and appeal.

Then the bubble burst economically in 2001. Few jobs, especially well-paying ones. The cost of housing is enormous. The traffic is HORRIBLE. And I live in L.A., which is saying something. (Back in the mid-90's, Seattle ranked #1 for bad traffic, beating out L.A. and D.C.)

In Seattle, it took me an hour to commute 25 miles one way. Here, I can cover 50 in the same amount of time.

I left Seattle in '03, and although I will always have a soft spot in my heart for the place, it just doesn't cut it anymore.

Be prepared for lots of cloudy, gloomy weather in the winter. The latitude causes it to get dark by 4:00 PM this time of year, and daylight doesn't come until 8:00 AM. The summers are fantastic, however. Little to no rain, not humid, and lots of daylight hours.

Although most people are pleasant, many locals can be very provinicial, insular, and passive-aggressive (although a distant second to Portlanders in these and the obnoxiousness categories). I figure the gloom makes 'em sullen.

Unless you have a time machine, I would give moving there a LOT of thought. It still has much of its charm and natural beauty, but its time has passed, unless you are independently wealthy and enjoy mold and mildew.

Good luck!
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Jean Louise Finch Donating Member (651 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-17-06 09:03 PM
Response to Reply #18
31. I LOVE mold and mildew!
Just kidding about that. Thanks for your thoughts, ZombyWoof. I hope I'll be able to visit before committing, but who knows. The city I'm in right now is the exact opposite of the kind of place I want to live, so I suspect just about anywhere would be trading up...and the appeal of big mountains and open spaces is really almost too much to bear. I'd be moving there for a job so would be able to avoid the yucky sounding job hunt....I guess locals anywhere tend to be a bit insular, but I would think there are tons of new arrivals in the area, no?

Thanks really! for your thoughts,
Jean Louise
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MissMillie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 10:44 AM
Response to Original message
21. There's a whole underground thing there
not all that exciting, but nonetheless....
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philosophie_en_rose Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 10:48 AM
Response to Original message
22. Live close to where you work.
The city is beautiful. Relatively low crime. Generally Progressive. But the commute is just hell.
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Jean Louise Finch Donating Member (651 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-17-06 08:56 PM
Response to Reply #22
29. Good tip.
My dream is to live somewhere that's biking or walking distance to work (though I guess that is everyone's dream!). I've been living in a city with the worst traffic that has ever been imagined for the last three years, where walking on the sidewalk is an obstacle course and biking a deathwish, so where ever I end up next, especially in a beautiful, safe city, I'm going to make SURE I can forego a vehicle and get around on my own two legs.

Thanks!
Jean Louise
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chaska Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 12:12 PM
Response to Original message
25. Lived there for 3 years....
Some good times, but I wasn't terribly happy while there for the most part. Probably mostly my fault. The rain can get to you (everybody) though.
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bikebloke Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 12:23 PM
Response to Original message
26. Seven years there and was glad to leave
It seemed jobs were reserved for locals. Relatives and their friends took priority. And if you did work, it would be pulling their slack - without benfits or even vacation time. I've seen good workers given the sack because someone's kid needed a free paycheck.

I managed to save enough money and leave for another start in 2000. Doing better now.
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mondo joe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 12:29 PM
Response to Original message
27. It's a beautiful place with lots to do. The culture is somewhat standoffish
and reserved, which makes it hard to make deeper personal relationships.

Housing is insanely expensive, and traffic is bad.

Winters are too dark for too much of the day for too long, which can be depressing, though I don't notice it much anymore.

Lots of beautiful locations if you like anything outdoorsy.

The city is really more about its neighborhoods, each of which is somewhat distinct culturally from each other.

I like it a lot, personally.
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Jean Louise Finch Donating Member (651 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-17-06 08:58 PM
Response to Original message
30. Thanks everyone!
Did all the other NW DUers survive the crazy storm last Friday?

Thanks everyone for your thoughts on the area; I shall keep reading and investigating.

Jean Louise
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Aristus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-17-06 11:51 PM
Response to Original message
32. Mondo Joe is right; enjoy the diverse neighborhoods.
Here are a few to sample:

Ballard
Fremont
Belltown
First Hill
Capitol Hill
The U District (where UofW or "You-Dub" is located.)
Pioneer Square (which is triangular, BTW :-) )
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wickerwoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-18-06 04:59 AM
Response to Original message
33. If you didn't live there before 1985, you will never, ever belong...
The good: pretty clean, walkable downtown

The great: easy drive to the mountains, OK skiing, beautiful location, very liberal culture, very mild climate, good schools

The bad: traffic is a super-pain in the ass, housing prices are beserk, the city refuses to invest in any kind of sensible mass-transit system, it really does rain that much, a lot of people are WAY too cool for school... but if you can learn to blame it all on the Californians you can disguise yourself as a native.
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