America Through My Eyes
Telugu Original : Dr K.Geeta
English Translation: V.Vijaya Kumar
After traveling all over California without leaving anything, and thinking of visiting neighboring states in April, friends suggested, “The tulip festival in Seattle and the surrounding areas is a great choice.” I promptly switched over and everyone was okay. Satya and the children asked the first question wherever we started, “What do we have to see?” Because I always take them to places where they are linked with flowers, trees, rivers, mountains, and the sea.
There are many things that keep my mind entertained around Seattle, and also for children. This time my mother is also with us, which makes the journey a bit more exciting for me. But we have to plan this journey keeping in mind her fitness. Driving that far was difficult for the children and mother, so we chose to travel by air. We decided to fly to Seattle, take a rental car, and spend 3-4 days exploring the surrounding area. We booked the third week of April for “spring break”. We usually think there may not be any tiredness in air travel, but the fact is different. We need to be at the airport around two hours before and after the flight.
Seattle is 850 miles north of my hometown, across the states of California and Oregon, in the state of Washington. The city of Seattle is the 15th largest city not just in the state of Washington but in overall North America. During the Second World War, the city was famous for fighter aircraft manufacturing. After the 80s, it became the center of tech giants like Microsoft and Amazon. Therefore, Seattle became famous all over the world and developed rapidly. Apart from the geographically beautiful coastal area, the city center is also the most beautiful city with the lake “Lake Union”. It is the fifth rainiest city in America. As no one can foresee when it will rain, online recommendations suggested that we should carry umbrellas. But we didn’t want to due to the “limited” weight protocol of air travel. However, instead of souvenirs, we decided to buy umbrellas there. Luckily, the four days we were there were sunny.
If we travel another 100 miles north of Seattle, we reach the border between Canada and the United States. It is a must-see area. There are hundreds of acres of colorful rainbow tulip gardens on the ground, the “Mount Rainier” snow mountain that seems to have sprouted in the sky above the city, the historically and spectacularly lit glass forest, and the “Space Needle” with a view of the city of Seattle… and many more attractions await us.
Our flight was at six in the morning. We reached the airport at half past four. Satya dropped us off and drove another three miles to the pre-booked long-term car parking. I stood in line for everyone to check in. They said that everyone should be seen with their identity. First, they asked my mother for her passport as an identity. My mother put on a blank face and said, “You didn’t tell me to bring the passport, it was in a purse somewhere in my room!” I thought that our journey might be postponed that day. However, I called Satya and informed him. Luckily, he had not parked his car yet, so he went back to get it. Since there was no traffic in the morning, he rushed to our house, 15 miles away from the airport. Since then, every minute was spent with tension. Satya dashed back to the airport with the passport just fifteen minutes before the flight time.
It was eight in the morning when we reached Seattle. It was time to take care of the rental car, etc. As planned, we went to “Pike Place Market” for breakfast and lunch. We heard that there would be a food tour. The area where Pike Place Market is located in Seattle is like the hilly road to Visakhapatnam of an Indian town. From above the market, you can see the sea below.
We found a parking place down the road by the sea. We went up in the lift to the upper floors. It is a normal market with three to four floors. Above all, the area is a junction where another road meets. It is there that we saw tulip flowers for the first time. They were full of beauty and attractiveness.
When we entered the market, we felt extremely hungry. Luckily, an Indian stall appeared there. We devoured rotis and rice hurriedly. The market here closely resembles the Indian malls. Various colorful clothes, jewelry, and food items are sold all over the place. Most of all, the fish shop, which has a lot of fish, is a must-see for the performance of the fisherman’s song they sing to attract customers. From corner to corner of the market, we searched and could not find anything worth buying. We decided to go to the Space Needle in the afternoon, so we left that place after about two hours.
(to be continued…)
A post graduate in English literature and language and in Economics. A few of my translations were published. I translated the poems of Dr. Andesri , Denchanala, Ayila Saida Chary and Urmila from Telugu to English. I write articles and reviews to magazines and news papers. To the field of poetry I am rather a new face.