There are not many jobs in Bellingham. The main industries are housing and retirees. And those are hardly (on the whole) high tech or lucrative industries. The mean wage, I've read, is $18 an hour. So why is everyone so pleasant here in the City of Subdues Excitement?
One reason may be that we have few corporate environments like the picture above. (This is some cubicle farm that I took from this link. I cringed when I saw this the setting in this picture, as I am a recovering corporate drone myself.)
Bland neutral colors, probably set in some suburban office park where key cards are required for entry, and dining in the company cafeteria is de rigeur. (Toe the line, junior, and you may succeed.) I hope those days will be behind me forever. Is your soul worth a shiny new car every few years? At least my salary allows me to dine at the swank Horeshoe Cafe on occassion (like last night), where life and the vittles are fine, albeit the patrons a bit eccentric. But that can be said about Bellingham in general.
A dreary day here - first sun, then clouds, then wind, now drizzle. I should go out and probably will later to a meditation sitting. I could use it.