Tuesday, May 31, 2005

The Airport

SeaTac Airport has had a big renovation and we took a look on our way to and from Albuquerque this past weekend. Today, the Seattle PI included a big article about our lovely remodel.


The weather was clear and gorgeous when we took off and returned so the new gigantic glass wall framed the completely visible Olympic Mountains. One cannot see Mount Rainier from this vista; you have to get in an airplane to do that. But, oh man, if the skies are clear and the pilot flies directly over or next to Mount Rainier, it is an unforgettable treat. See, Mount Rainier is so huge that when the airplane flies over the top, the passengers could see individual people if they were there. Unfortunately, two people had died the day before we left so as far as we could see, no mountain climbing groups were visible. What I never had seen before nor knew is that there is a sizeable crater on top and we looked right into the snowy depths. WOW!

On our return flight, I was sitting next to a woman from Washington DC who was coming to Seattle to visit her brother who is in the military and stationed here at Fort Lewis. She had never been to Seattle. As we approached the Puget Sound area, she started to ask questions. Upon seeing one of our lesser volcanoes looking small in the distance, she asked if it was Mount Rainier. I said, "No, just wait a moment and it will be one of the biggest things you've ever seen." Sure enough, right on cue, a massive glacier encrusted rocky wall filled all of the windows on the left side of the plane as we slowly flew past "the mountain". It was kind of scary, actually.

"Oh my!" was all she was able to utter. Shortly after that we circled around with Lake Washington visible and Puget Sound with its ferries. She asked me if we were looking at downtown Seattle.

"Yes, see, there is the Space Needle!" I pointed out-- which looks odd from the top down.

"This place is beautiful."

"I love to travel but I love coming home; it really is beautiful here." I quietly responded.

I cannot explain the smell. Albuquerque was dry and clear and it doesn't smell the same. Our dampness and our water and air are enveloping in a way that simply feels and smells---good--Seattle good.