Some shops have guest books for tourists to sign. Sunday, I visited a souvenir shop in Winchester Bay, Oregon that had a guest book and something more. Visitors could stick a push pin into a map of the USA to show their hometown.
Now, I always claim Pennsylvania as home even though I have lived in Texas, so my eye went right to the Keystone State. No need for me to add a pin, Pittsburgh already had a mark. Then, I got to thinking about home and what a contrast there was between PA and OR.
In Pennsylvania, you won’t have a seal keep pace with you when you take a walk on the beach. There is only one beach back home, that’s Presque Isle on Lake Erie and there are no seals there. You won’t find giant pieces of driftwood around as nature’s very own sculptures. And, river estuaries do not flow through sand to the ocean as does the Siltcoos River in Oregon. Crab nets back home are only found in seafood restaurants like Red Lobster. There are no mountains made of oyster shells just out back. The popular wave pool called Sandcastle can simulate the ocean, but no one can surf the rhythmic man made waves.
Pennsylvania has lots of things that Oregon doesn’t – like the Steelers, perogies, the Liberty Bell, Steamtown, and more – but I have come to learn that if you’re not visiting new places, you are missing out on experiencing things you just won’t see back home.