Everyone talks about the weather when discussing Seattle. I’m not going to. It rains.
Seattle is the espresso champ. If you are like me and love espresso then you will find many places that know how to please you. Trabant, Victrola and Caffe Vita were my three favorite places. I probably tried over 20 places, so I still have more ground to cover on any return trip to Seattle.
The people were very friendly. On a few occasions, we got lost and were assisted by strangers. Unlike San Diego, the people of Seattle did not spend their time out in public yapping on cellphones or tuned out on their iPods. They were actually talking to their neighbor or reading a book. For a week I was spoiled on the friendly chatting between strangers.
Yesterday while at a San Diego car wash I got a disturbed look when I accidentally made small talk with a few of our locals. After that SoCal faux pas, I stood back and watched 5 San Diego strangers spaced evenly apart not making eye contact with each other as they waited for their cars to be cleaned. That scene would not have happened in Seattle.
The cafe culture is probably the reason there are so many web start-ups in the area. Avoid the rain, duck into a coffee house, get wired on espresso and then come up with a business plan while talking to a perfect stranger. Remove any part of that recipe and it doesn’t work. If the weather is too nice, people stay out of the cafes. If the cafes don’t get as much traffic then the coffee quality never evolves to greatness. Great coffee makes people more friendly, whereas bad coffee puts people in a bad mood.
We did meet a local guy that told us that people tend to be the least friendly during the winter when the days are the shortest and weather. That comment makes sense and almost makes me want to return to Montevideo, Uruguay to see if their moods are elevated during the summer.
Before you single guys and gals pack your bags and move to Seattle let me warn you about something. The women, although thin, are very plain Jane. If you are looking for a curvaceous feminine woman, stay away from Seattle. And women, if you prefer your men to have more muscular definition than Waldo, you may want to bring someone with you from a different location.
All in all it was a great trip. In addition to the city, we were able to see Mt. Rainier and North Cascades National Parks. The next time I’m up there, I plan on seeing Mount Olympia and taking the Twin Peaks tour.
Sounds like you had a really good time in Seattle. People talking to strangers? It’s funny but I’ve lived so long in San Diego that the concept is completely foreign to me. If a stranger comes up to me and talks I get nervous that they’re trying to sell me something (take your pick: religion, magazines, etc.).
So any chance of you moving there? Obviously you’ve done some research into it and you guys must at least be considering it.
Hope everything is going well for you two.
I’d estimate that there is a 1 in 3 chance of going to Seattle. August 1st is the end of our current lease.
I just wanted to drop a comment and say you have a great blog. I was searching for pictures of Mt Rainier (I did the Skyline trail last Thursday for the first time.. beautiful!) and stumbled upon your space.
Glad to hear you had a solid experience in Seattle. I didn’t grow up here myself, but I love the Puget Sound and as far as I can see the greater King County area is my homestead.
Keep up the excellent posts.. nifty reads of travel, coffee, and misc. daily blather– all of my favourite things to peruse when “wasting” time at work