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It’s sunny in Seattle

May 25, 2012

Drizzly. Dreamy. Romantic. Green. Beautiful. All these words fit one place, at least for me. Seattle! We landed in the setting of one of my favorite movies – Sleepless in Seattle three days ago. Incidentally, it also happens to be the city where my sister lives.  And yes, it was drizzling when we landed. But I did not see anyone with an umbrella. When one of my cousins (who also lives in Seattle) heard this, he said, “The people who carry umbrellas are usually tourists. Those who don’t carry umbrellas have probably lived in Seattle for a long time.” It made sense. I was quick to make an impression that people in Seattle enjoy rain much like the people in Mumbai – half way across the globe, but the same things are cherished. My thought changed just a little when two days later, someone said to me, “You live in California. I wish I could go there. It gets gloomy here sometimes.” Hmm. This time I can draw similarities between people living in Seattle and Bangalore!

After three days of drizzle, finally, yesterday was a sunny day in Seattle. The sun brought with it the much welcome warmth and a variety of colored birds that I could see from my sister’s balcony. When it is sunny in Seattle, always follow a rule. Pull out summer clothes, step out of the house, and enjoy a rare rendezvous with that moody, honored, dignitary that graces the beautiful city only occasionally! We followed the rule. Jay, Swati and I set off to visit a place which is the largest building in the world when measured by volume. The building is adorned by murals comprising over 9000 square metres of pressure-sensitive graphic film. It also covers six factory doors and the majestic mural has been registered in the Guinness Book of Records. If your fingers are not yet at the keyboard to search the ever helpful Wikipedia, and your eyes are still on this page, let me tell you that I am talking about the Boeing building in Everett, Washington. Boeing is the world’s leading aerospace company. And why did I give you these facts? Oh, that is because the tour guide repeated it so many times that I thought she probably wanted us to disseminate these information to my co-habitants on this planet! The real reason for the facts being repeated over and over again was to entice people to buy the Boeing aircrafts! The costs of the aircrafts range from a modest 200 million to a slightly exorbitant 350 million. And did I forget to mention they don’t accept credit cards? They accept only cash or cheques! So be prepared for that! Interested? (wink wink)

Enter Boeing’s assembly building. And experience it through my eyes! The Boeing building is like a small city with over 20,000 employees from different cultural backgrounds working at the same time! It stays true to the amazing fact of being the largest building in the world in terms of volume. It is huge. And wherever your eyes reach, you can see humungous planes standing still. Some of them are waiting for the wings to be attached and some of them are waiting for the engine to be installed. But they all stand with a sense of pride, enjoying the views by the curious strangers like Jay, Swati and me. We stood on a balcony inside the building and while our tour guide was explaining how the planes are assembled, my ears paid attention to her. But my eyes were scanning the floor (which was one floor below us) of the factory building. I could see people from various ethnicities who wore badges of Boeing and were busy assembling a part of the wing of a Boeing 747 plane. I also saw some people sipping the famous Starbucks coffee (Seattle boasts of the first Starbucks outlet) and munching on Snapea chips (a relatively healthier version of chips) while others worked at the flat screen computers! So much action in one building and one could see it all at once. Now back to the star of the place – the planes. We saw Boeing aircrafts – 777, 787, and the 747. We saw the assembly lines for the planes too! And we also saw the huge cranes (used to move parts of a plane from one location to another) in action. It was amazing to see the amount of effort people put in to enable you to take the journey to meet your loved ones! I love planes; they bring your loved ones to you. They also carry food from faraway places to make them available at your doorstep, and they offer you breathtaking views when you glance through the window inside the plane!

For me the most special plane right now is the Boeing 747! Why? My parents are traveling in a Boeing 747 to come and meet me!

I leave you with the picture of a  ‘Dream lifter’. You can read more about it here.

More of Seattle in the days to come.


  1. siddharth permalink

    Nice 🙂 Enjoy your stay in Seattle. Do share some photos of you folks along with the planes too…

  2. Srija Unnikrishnan permalink

    Could visualize the Boeing factory!

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