Friday, October 25, 2013

Betty in the Wild: West Coast, USA

So, back from Alaska, where apparently I missed an anonymous Betty, I found Seattle awaiting my return with all kinds of delights in store.  First, my 80-something godmother is living in a high-rise for the elderly with sweeping views of Lake Washington.  I gotta get me some of that, though I suppose when the day comes I may feel a pang.

That's Bellevue over on the other side of the lake -- stay tuned.  Cruise ship somewhere to south.

Betty Ter Ophetmeer moved to Seattle in the 50s, in her 20s, after seeing a travelogue on the Pacific Northwest at an East Coast US movie theater.  She took a train west and checked into the YWCA, got a job and a home and a husband and five sons, in more or less that order.  I gave her Betty Beth's cast-off Cassandra by Chance to leaven her usual reading of Flannery O'Connor and Langston Hughes and such.  She reports enjoying it and finding another Betty book somewhere around the place.

Note fog.  More in a minute.  Cassandra may stumble into a lake given the low visibility; Benedict is not troubled by fog.
Right!  Betty Beth!  We met in Bellevue for dinner, and she gave me the scarf you see below and a bag o' books to distribute as I see fit.  Army Betty, I'll be home in a week or so.

Cocktail is mine, all mine, and I had to eat the extra brandied cherry so Betty Beth (l) would not risk driving Mr. Beth's car while under any sort of influence due to wheels.  Wheels within wheels, that is.

 Did I mention that, Seattle being Seattle, on my first morning there we had a torrential rainstorm, with the unusual added feature of lightning and thunder, and that on my second morning there the fog was so thick I could barely see my balcony railing?
Lake Washington, out there lurking.  Look out, Cassandra!
Lovely visit.  Betty Debbie could not join the Betty dinner because she puts family first or some such thing -- how Betty of her -- and she had a son visiting whom she hadn't seen in two years.  A great big grown-up boy like that; how much could he have changed?

In case Olivia needs a fall-back occupation and likes the look of the PacNW, as who would not?
But southward ho, and Betty Keira is next to provide a bed for the night, a fab dinner (rub the potatoes with olive oil and roll in kosher salt before baking; oh so yummy) and a charming family.  Plus, I met Betty Kylene!  Squee!  But none of us had the presence of mind to snap a pic.

The Demon Baby having declined to do the honors, we used the camera auto-timer.  The book is A Summer Idyll, as it features the worst house guest ever, which I am not.  Though awfully good at inviting myself...
Betty Keira recommended heading more-or-less straight west before turning south along the Pacific coast, and she spoke with authority.  That route took me to the Tillamook Cheese Factory.

Not Gouda, but probably cheddar, as in Gorge.

I choked down an ice cream in Cordelia and Army Betty's honor.
 I'm pretty sure this is an Oregon ocean view, but it might be northern California.  Either one is well worth a visit if you have the chance.  The Oregon ones especially are chilly and windy enough that someone might propose to you there.
Octavia's cruise ship off to the west somewhere.
This is definitely a California beach, and those are elephant seals unless Betty AnoninTX says otherwise.
Amabel and Oliver visit the seashore, though he doesn't propose there.  In Betty's yet-to-be-discovered 136th novel, they show up as crossover characters, with an abandoned seal pup in the back of the Bentley.

 A random river in California, except this one gets a roadside scenic viewpoint, unlike most.

Gijs's first wife ran off with an American!  Maybe to a random California river!
Santa Barbara, California, is a great place for unsuitable girlfriends and former fiancees to find better matches, or for unsuitable first wives to meet untimely ends.

It is always summer in Santa Barbara!  Big Slice, Tishy!  Plus, those dark dots are frogmen.  Why do no Betty heroes scuba dive to the rescue?

Random stranger in Santa Barbara agrees to pose with Tishy and Jason.  He little knows...

Former Army Corps of Engineer turned civilian builder of Anchorage parking garages, now resident in Seattle.  You see how it all ties together?


  1. Seattle, Bellevue, Portland (Oregon) and now California! There are quite a few faithful Bettys in California. I hope you've got some of their addresses. Oh, there is our Betty in Mountain View! See, I told you!

  2. Goodness me, Betty van den Betsy, what a lot of Neelsian weather all within less than fourty-eight hours. You were truly blessed. giggle
    Torrential rainstorm, thunder and lightning and fog

  3. Great pictures. Nice to "meet" Mevrouw ter Ophetmeer (he he, very good, BvdB). Charming pictures of Betty Beth and you in Bellevue. Great snapshot of our dear Betty Keira & you, I still cannot decide which of you pressed the button on the camera. Great shot, love it. And the scenic BitW pics are great, as always. Thanks for sharing with us.

  4. Fabulous pictures! I love and miss the West Coast; isn't Tillamook gorgeous? (In addition to being the home of the world's best cheddar and ice cream.). Will you be home before Halloween?

  5. It was so fun hosting you and you were a darling guest not to mind my rather predictable chaos!

  6. The Grass + "Grass"-picture. Did you have your copy of Never While the Grass Grows with you or did you have to fetch it first? So funny.

  7. Seattle, Puget Sound
    I have started reading Christmas stories. Last night, until way past mid-night, I was reading Debbie Macomber’s Silver Bells (in That Christmas Feeling), a fun story about the inhabitants of a brick three-story building off Seattle’s Queen Anne Hill.
    At one point, the hero, hiding out at his office, is standing at the window and I was reminded of this post and one of the Founding Betty’s hypothetical topographical surnames.

    The view of downtown Seattle and Puget Sound was spectacular from his twentieth-story viewpoint. Breathtaking.