As you have probably guessed from the title, I'm leaving Seattle. I'm moving to Prince Edward Island - remote Canada. I've been here two years now and, while I've enjoyed most of my time here, I'm really ready to move.
If you a native Seattleite about their city they'll tell you that Seattle is the best city in the world. It really seems that Seattleites are unable to say anything bad about their city. Well, Seattle isn't a perfect city and it's definitely not suited for everyone.
As I'm leaving in two weeks, I thought I'd write what I hope will be a helpful guide to Seattle (and the Pacific Northwest in general). I aim to provide you with pros and cons about living in the Seattle area. My main goal is to present an accurate and fair guide to the Emerald City.
I'm originally from the Washington, DC area. I've discovered I'm still an East Coaster at heart.
Please remember that this is my opinion and is based on my personal experiences. This is in no way intended to insult Seattle or the people who live here. It's just not for me.
Alright, on with the pros and cons.
- Extremely vegan-friendly
- I consider Seattle to be the most vegan-friendly city in the world. People in Portland, OR will fight to the death over this. It gets annoying. They're both very vegan-friendly.
- It's nice to be surrounded by people who all understand and agree our President is a moron. Seattle has the be the most liberal city in the United States.
- I wasn't much of a coffee drinker until I moved here, but Seattle really does have the best coffee. I recommend Caffe Ladro and Wayward Coffeehouse. You'll be amazed at how many places serve organic, fair trade coffee.
- As an Internet junkie, I really appreciate the fact that each and every cafe in Seattle has free wifi (except for Starbucks...but why the hell would you go there anyway?). If you happen to find the one cafe that doesn't have free wifi, leave and walk to the next cafe...probably only one block away in Seattle.
- The area surrounding Seattle is extremely beautiful...when it's not overcast and misty/rainy. You can see snow-covered mountains in every direction. The city is very hilly and the downtown skyline is beautiful.
- You'll notice a change in Seattle if you're used to the East Coast. People are much nicer and actually want to talk to you. However, they aren't perfect. See below.
- Great hiking, cycling, skiing, etc. However, like many other Seattleites I hibernate during the crappy weather. Grey skies and rain does not make me want to get on my bike.
- Seattle's job market is great. You won't have a problem finding a job here if you decide to move here. However, because the job market is so good the housing is extremely overpriced. See below.
- The weather
- Seattle may be the most vegan-friendly but it's the worst place to live in regards to weather. Nine months of the year you don't see much of the sun at all. It's overcast and rainy. I can't stand the weather here. I never realized how much my mood is tied to the weather, but I need to see the sun. I can't stress how awful the weather is here. If you're someone who needs sunny days throughout the whole year and not just summer don't move to Seattle.
- Don't get me wrong, the drivers here are courteous and cautious. However, they take it to the extreme. Many people drive extremely slowly here. It's not uncommon for me to be behind someone going 20 mph on the street I live in (the speed limit is 30 mph). Trust me, you'll want to take the bus. It's so much less stressful.
- While the people here are nice, they also prefer an indirect method of communication. I'm used to direct communication. In my experience, people in the Washington, DC area are direct and rude and people in the Pacific Northwest are indirect but nice. That indirectness sometimes turns into passive aggressiveness. Also, Seattleites are extremely flaky. If someone makes plans with you don't assume they're set in stone.
- This city is outrageously overpriced and continues to rise. I have no desire to continue to pay far too much to live in a city where the sun don't shine. I pay over $1,000 for a studio apartment.
For me, Seattle is a great place to visit but not somewhere I want to live. I've enjoyed my time here and have met some great people, but I'm ready to move on. I need to live somewhere with better weather (I can't think of anywhere with worse weather) and that's less expensive.
I'm also ready to live in a more rural area for a while. I'm finding cities to be a little much right now. I need some space and some peace and quiet.
Let me know if you'll be out on or near Prince Edward Island, Canada. I'll probably be making trips to Halifax, NS once in a while, as it's the closest city.