Albuquerque or Spokane?

Mar 31st, 2007, 08:03 PM
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Albuquerque or Spokane?

Odd query I know - but a friend of mine can take a job in either city, temporary assignment. My friend has already done a lot of research - but I'm curious to hear feedback from people who have lived/do live in either place. Yes, Spokane is a small city, not much going on and Albuquerque is a fast-growing, sprawling city in a dry, desert climate. But what else?

What about either city would the average casual visitor to either city not know or consider "surprising?"
Andrew is online now  
Mar 31st, 2007, 08:54 PM
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I returned to Spokane when I retired in 1996 after having lived in Japan, Germany and California.

Actually, there's quite a lot going on here. The town is basketball-mad on account of the success of the Gonzaga U basketball team, but it also hosts the largest 3 on 3 basketball tournament in the country. There's a huge footrace called Bloomsday that draws 40,000 or 50,000 participants every year. Good access to skiing, to fishing, and to camping. There are four good golf courses, which are amazingly cheap, according to my golfing friend.

There are more and more cultural activities, such as symphony, theater, and visiting shows--Lion King was sold out for about 6 weeks. Blue Man Group was here recently, and "Aida" by Elton John and Tim Rice is here now.

Spokane is a pretty city, with a river running through the center of it, and a lovely park on both banks of the river. The people are quite casual, laid-back and very friendly. It's quite normal for strangers to say hello when they pass on the Centennial trail or on the street. It is a safe city, which I really appreciate after having lived in Sacramento for years.

Housing is still very cheap in comparison with most other cities.

The weather is pretty bad in the winter. It's cold!
Pegontheroad is offline  
Apr 1st, 2007, 05:00 AM
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What time of year is the temporary assignment? That would make a big difference.

Spokane's is 280 miles from Seattle and it has a very different climate--cold and snowy in the winter and hot in the summer.

Albuquerque is 60 miles from Santa Fe--that's a big attraction to some.
happytrailstoyou is offline  
Apr 1st, 2007, 07:19 AM
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I forgot to say that Spokane traffic is very light. Two of the people in my Spanish class--one from Seattle and one from California--chose Spokane because of reasonable traffic conditions. Here, we consider it a traffic jam when four cars are waiting at a stop light.

I frequently drive the four miles from my sister's house on the south side to my house on the north side, through the downtown area, hitting 16 green lights before I get a red one.

When I first returned here, I was talking to a bank clerk who was from Tacoma. She said, "You know how in Tacoma or Sacramento,they have a heliocopter to report on traffic? Here they use a car!" We both cracked up, laughing--but it's true!
Pegontheroad is offline  
Apr 1st, 2007, 10:58 AM
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Thanks, that's great feedback, I appreciate it! It will help my friend.
Andrew is online now  
Apr 2nd, 2007, 01:12 PM
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Spokane is so healthy and fresh and surrounded by untamed nature, and Albuquerque is so brown and hot and ... ugh!

Spokane is growing quite a bit, particularly in its eastern suburbs, but at this pace, perhaps maybe by 2098, it will only begin to cause people to shudder as does the Albuquerque of today.

And the fact that the assignment is "temporary" further tips the scale toward going to Spokane.

Does the friend prefer a warm and beautiful summer or a hot and grimy summer?

NorthwestMale is offline  
Apr 2nd, 2007, 02:25 PM
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Here's another angle: what is there for a single 30-something to do in both places? I know there's lots of outdoorsy stuff to do in both places, but what about the city social life? Spokane obviously seems to offer way fewer opportunities for social activities than does Albuquerque.

Andrew is online now  
Apr 2nd, 2007, 03:09 PM
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Here's a relocation forum that might help your friend out:

AustinTraveler is offline  

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