I took this week of to visit my parents in Seattle. Mike dropped me off at the airport this morning -- it hasn't changed much since I last visited it, which is a surprise for SJC -- and I had an uneventful flight up. No one was here when I arrived, so I snagged the keys to Dad's Miata and went for a spin around town.
I had forgotten how beautiful Seattle is when it's not raining. It's "hot" today -- in the low 80's, which would make it comfortably warm for San Jose. On the other hand, people in Seattle can get around in the rain without applying for federal disaster relief funds.
Went out to grab dinner at a restaurant and bar not to far from my parent's house. While eating, I came to the shocking realization that there isn't a single fast-food restaurant that I can think of within two miles of my parents' house. And, unlike the bay area, it's not because my parents live in a developer's wasteland, with nothing but housing around. There are easily 30 restaurants and cafes within the same radius.
This is one of the surprising things I never realized about my home town until I left it. Living in San Jose I've gotten used to the idea that there are never less than 3 Taco Bells and 2 7-11s within a mile of any given point, and that the challenge of dining is finding a place that isn't a national chain. In Seattle, there's probably a Cheescake Factory or P.F. Changs around somewhere, but you'd have to drive a long ways to find it.