How Viewtiful

A two hour trip north of Seattle and only thirty minutes from Canada along the I5 corridor sits Bellingham. A town of its own that is home to plenty of students, hardworking-everyday people, and me. Im here for School, but I grew up in the Seattle area and what I love about my new home is all of the pacific northwest beauty that it has to offer, minus the big industry. When I sit atop the hill that is Western Washington University, I can see the puget sound and Canadian mountainranges without big buildings and smog distorting my view. Its a one of a kind feeling that is exclusive to the students here. Until now…

Viking Union Viewpoint
Viewed toward the right (above) The Viking Viewpoint overlooks the city of Bellingham.

Being accepted to Western Washington was a big goal of mine. It appealed to me because it reminded me of home. Not only was it close to the Water and green all around, but my Mom graduated from there in 1982. I used to visit the school in the event that i would go through bellingham on a roadtrip with her. There wasnt a whole lot I could remember at the young ages I was but I do remember one thing; the Viking Union Viewpoint. This is quite arguably the most scenic spot in all of Bellingham.

View from atop Queen Anne Hill neighborhood.

When you think of a view you usually might think skyscrapers, mountain hikes, and scenery. But this isnt like a city view. I remember those kind of views. The Queen Anne Hill in Seattle is a great example of this. In seattle anyone can drive up the hill and spend quality time with loved ones taking in the view and taking pictures to remember their visit. Or at least thats what the majority does. The fact that Queen Anne is situated atop the “Emerald City” is reason why I notice a huge difference in the crowds that accumulate there compared to the small groups that come through Bellinghams viewpoint. Bellingham is a much more peaceful place whether you compare it to the bustling city or not.

As a student at Western i am expected to be challenged each day with the hardships of college classes. I try not to get overwhelmed but as we all can relate, life isnt all playdough and Cupcakes. When I use the Viking Union Viewpoint for its beauty it’s a safe bet that i’m taking a moment to destress. Standing there in my own little nirvana away from home I can picture alot more of my life than school allows for. When I look to my side in that moment im usually accompanied by older folks. Call it pride, or a coinsidence, but its apparent that alumni enjoy returning to this spot from time to time. Because the view sits center of the Western Washington Campus there are a wide assortment of visitors here. Although being on a campus can sound like added exclusion to the viewpoint there actually is a huge demand to visit from people amongst the community. Similar to homecoming groups coming through Queen Anne, our community here in Bellingham might have fieldtrips or tours coming through the Viewpoint. It all has a part in the tranquility and quality of the Viking Union Viewpoint experience.

Finding another relationship between Seattle and Bellingham proved challenging. Besides being located in the same state, any other connections seemed buried in a clutter of thoughts. I thought back to how empty the Viking Union Viewpoint is on a rainy day and I finally could dig deeper. The Northwest spirit is to be able to trudge through a rainy day. One thing that both Emerald City and Bellingham arent short of is rain. On a rainy day you can easily find solitude in the Viking Union Viewpoint because next to no one spends time here. Personally I tend to think like a true Northwest Pacificer and never let weather keep me from passing up valuable moments. The Viking Union Viewpoint has that power over me and much of Bellingham.

The Viewpoint at Western truly allows you to feel what it is like to be a Viking. I will be using this place for the rest of its existence because after this path down college is all said and done I am going to attach my heart, soul, and pride to the place that once gave me my character and perseverance. I would recommend that everyone attending Western pay this place a visit at least once a quarter because you will miss the beauty that passed you by while studying. And it will miss you, trust me. The Viking Union Viewpoint serves to be seemingly therapudic for me and it has never failed to improve my mind. I hope one day I can share it will my family just like my mom did when I was young.