A new edition has arrived of the book “1,000 Places to See Before You Die.”
Or, as I prefer to call it, “More Than 900 Places I’ll Die Without Seeing.”
That’s because this book, by travel writer Patricia Schultz, is a depressing reminder of how little of the world most of us have seen.
When it first arrived on my desk, I naively, without even thinking, started leafing through it to see how many of the 1,000 places I could put on my life list.
It proved to be a depressingly simple task.
Chapter 2, Africa: Never been there.
Chapter 3, The Middle East: Never seen it.
Chapter 4, Asia: Never made it.
Chapter 5, Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands: Sounds great.
Chapter 6, Europe: Nope, except Great Britain.
Chapter 7, Latin America: No clue.
Chapter 8, The Caribbean, Bahama and Bermuda: Sounds exotic.
So, just like that, I’ve already identified about 750 places for my not-seen list. I have not, for instance, taken a weekend getaway to “majestic” Yekaterinburg in the Ural Mountains. Nor have I strolled the beautiful Mergui Archipelago in Myanmar (“home to a nomadic seafaring people”).
That leaves me with only one chapter, The United States and Canada.
And somehow, I have managed to miss most of the places in that chapter, too. I’ll add up my final, sad, tally later (see hint in second paragraph), but first I want to make a few of my own lists from this book.
1. The Las Vegas Strip - I fear it would end badly, as in, “The Hangover.”
2. Daytona Speedway, Fla. - If I want to see cars race around in circles, I’ll hang out at the Sprague couplet.
3. The Hamptons, Long Island - I’ll pass on rich Manhattanites playing polo.
4. Sturgis Motorcycle Rally - I fear they would laugh when I rolled up on a Vespa.
5. Graceland - Liverpool is my personal musical Mecca.
Actually, I wouldn’t turn down a free trip to any of those five. A wise person once told me, “Never turn down an opportunity to see somewhere new,” which is a decent working philosophy of life, except if that place is the pirate- ridden coast of Somalia.
However, most of us have neither the time nor the means to gallivant around the globe, so here’s another list:
Places Within Shouting Distance That Made the Book
1. Lake Coeur d’Alene: “A pine-forest-enshrouded gem.”
2. Middle Fork of the Salmon River: “America’s greatest whitewater.”
3. Pike Place Market: “The gastronomic heart of Seattle.”
4. The San Juan Islands: “Washington’s ferry land.”
5. Glacier National Park: “The American Alps.”
6. Triple Creek Ranch, Darby, Mont.: “Home on the range in the Bitterroot Valley.”
7. The Columbia River Gorge: “A majestic cleft in the Cascade volcanoes.”
8. The Oregon Coast: “Rugged masterpiece of the natural world.”
Sadly, Mount Spokane (and everywhere else in Eastern Washington) failed to make it. So here’s a personal mini-list:
Other Places That the Book Egregiously Left Out
1. The Beartooth Mountains: Please sprinkle my ashes there.
2. Olympic National Park: Or there.
3. Kelly Creek, Idaho: Or there.
Well, I guess I can’t put it off any longer. I have to add up how many of those 1,000 places in the book I have seen in my 58 years. Thank goodness my parents believed in that “See the USA In Your Chevrolet” slogan when I was a kid, or this tally would look even worse. Still, too bad there is not one single entry for Kansas, where I went to a wedding last month…
Places I’ve been: 86.
Places I have not been: 914.
I’m thinking seriously of putt-putting my way to the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally this summer, just to make it No. 87.
High school and college football are here, so we can no longer pretend. Summer is going, going, almost gone. Yet, the weather remains nice. And the tourists are about to ...
Playing on the road in the Northwest League is never easy.
FISHING/HUNTING -- The recent breach of online hunting-fishing license sales appears to have exposed personal information for more than 2 million Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife customers, officials said ...
Donald Trump will hold a rally at the Xfinity Arena in Everett at 7 p.m. Tuesday, his campaign said today. The rally went up on the official campaign schedule, which ...
sponsored You’ve probably heard of co-ops: food co-ops, childcare co-ops, housing co-ops, energy co-ops.