This a just a list of a few things that stand out to me as different. Not wrong or bad, just things I’m not used to as a Midwesterner.
- Electric Car Chargers
When I first saw these, I was like: A gas filling spot at Walgreens? But no, electric car charger. And the only reason they would be there is because there are so many electric cars.
2. A stormwater storage pond.
I’ve never seen anything like this before, and there are several of them in my neighborhood! Ooh, and I was walking in another neighborhood tonight and saw a little sign by the corner sewage drain that said, “Puget Sound Begins Here.” It would have been so weird to see “The Mississippi River Begins Here.” Maybe we should, though.
3. In my little town of Issaquah, it is actually illegal for a store to put purchased items in a plastic bag. So they all use paper and at some places, like Target, they charge you for it.
4. In some places, seeing Mt. Rainier all the time. Just driving along and then: BOOM! There it looms, 87 miles away and still big.
5. Independent businesses, like a barbershop in an old train car or coffee stands in gas station parking lots
6. Starbucks everywhere. I mean, really, everywhere. I know they have hometown pride and all that, but St. Louis doesn’t sell Anheuser Busch everywhere. (Ooh, but wouldn’t that have been awesome??)
7. And speaking of coffee stands, some of those baristas only wear bikinis. (Usually in the poorer areas, sadly.) I had a Facebook exchange with my best friend about what they wear in the winter. She said. “I feel like they would wear Uggs. That way they won’t get cold.” Smart.
8. The culture of activeness. it’s not unusual to see boats being towed or kayaks, stand up paddle boards or bicycles atop cars. And the city provides lots of avenues to pursue these interests, like parks and bike paths and beaches. My husband isn’t weird for going biking at lunchtime. Everybody is active and they love it.
9. Salmon. There’s a lot of salmon on the menu, there’s a hatchery here in town, there will be a festival in a few weeks. I realize salmon has been a part of life here for millennia and this is just keeping up with it, it’s just interesting to see.
10. Cold brew coffee. If you love something, find a unique way to do it and live off that. That’s the ticket to success, right? To be fair, I don’t know if this started in the PNW, and I have since learned there are a few places in St. Louis that serve it, but it’s far more popular here.
Note: We have been informed that there are instances of #1 and 2 in the St. Louis area, the author has just missed them.