Window | Seattle, WA | October 2019

This view of Lake Union through a weather-etched pane had a painterly look that got me thinking. Don’t we each see the world through a set of personal filters? For instance, anger can blind us to the better qualities of those we berate. And strong positive emotions — joy, commitment, love — veil the flaws of people and places in our lives. When I was a kid, our family (on vacation) had lunch in a West Texas town’s only restaurant. Both the diner and the town itself were rundown rat holes — dirt streets, ramshackle buildings, water that smelled like rotten eggs. “Purtiest place I’ve ever lived,” exclaimed the waitress, who served us cold burgers and fries. “They keep sayin’ we gotta ree-locate — somethin’ about the town’s well goin’ sour. But I ain’t about to pack up and run. This is home.” The Lake Union view needs no defense, but I also know I tend to elevate the familiar.

[In photo: View looking north from the fourth floor of the city’s Museum of History & Industry.]