I just got back to New Hampshire from my brief “summer break” home in North Idaho. I must say, over the past few months I’ve come to realize just how much I prefer the Inland Northwest to New England. Don’t get me wrong, New Hampshire’s great and I don’t regret spending these few years here for an instant, but I find myself identifying much more with the Eastern Washington/North Idaho/Western Montana region. I may be a native Texan to the core, but Idaho's great, and I wish I'd realized that sooner.
Reasons why I prefer the Inland Northwest to NH/VT’s Upper Valley:
There’s a lot to like about New Hampshire. Here I am at Dartmouth, and a great university is something the Inland Northwest lacks. Yeah, Gonzaga’s good, but it just doesn’t compete in terms of guest lectures, cultural performances, and library resources. The NH presidential primary is very exciting, my barber shop is great (shoutout to Walt and Ernie’s!), New Hampshire Public Radio has a great Sunday lineup, and hey, the region’s willing to elect Democrats when Idaho isn’t, ha. But all in all, the Inland Northwest’s je ne sais quoi wins out.
(On a related note, Southwest is a great airline, but the Las Vegas airport, where I had my layover, needs work. The wireless is free, the view of the mountains wonderful, and the bathroom stalls large and clean, but there were slot machines everywhere (almost like the airport was its own casino), the BK Whoopers were EIGHT FREAKIN' DOLLARS, the halls were constantly crowded, and the décor was cheesy. But hey, free wireless, right?)