The difference between a writer and a lit teacher/critic is rather like the difference between a mother and a coroner. Both valuable skill-sets, but not doing the same task at all. -- Lois McMaster Bujold
Seattle's International District is a strange and wondrous place.
They have dragons on the power poles.
They have big traditional gates standing guard over sleek modern cars.
They have the Wing Luke Museum, housed in an old hotel where wave after wave of Asian immigrants lived after they arrived while they got their feet under them. The Wing Luke is named after the first Asian-American Seattle City Council member, who died in a plane accident at a too-young age. Not just a museum of the immigrant experience (although it does that extremely well -- the tour of the restored hotel was a highlight of the visit), but one of all Asian-Americans, it includes art as well as history.
And they also have Uwajimaya. I'm hard put to describe Uwajimaya. It's sort of like Cost Plus, sort of like Target, plus a huge grocery store and a mall food court, all in one. Except, of course, that it's all Asian, all the time [g]. The grocery store is particularly fascinating. I love learning about what other people eat. And if you want manga, the bookstore is your place. Not just shelf after shelf, but wall after wall, both in English and in the original languages. Fun stuff.
The express bus from Tacoma goes right into the heart of the International District. A good day was had by all.
P.S. My website has been updated again, to include sections on the freelance museum work and writing business I am starting. Please come by and check it out.