Changes In Plans

Today, Phillip and I took Brian and Kathi to the Living Computer Museum, in Sodo, for Christmas. We’d planned for this trip to be before Christmas, but schedules got in the way, and this was as close as we all could get.

The Living Computer Museum is less than half a mile from Sodo Station, so we planned to take Link light rail and meet them there.

We’d all talked about carpooling to Uwajimaya after the museum and having lunch at the food court. After lunch, Phillip and I would ride the First Hill Streetcar home.

That was today’s plan, anyway.

I got up this morning, checked Facebook for any messages from Brian and Kathi. There were none, so I took a shower and got Phillip up.

Phillip turned his phone on. There was a text message from Sound Transit. There was no Link service from University of Washington Station and Stadium Station, due to a power outage. I’d received the same text alert, but I hadn’t checked my phone after my shower.

(Heading south, University of Washington Station is the stop before Capitol Hill Station, and Sodo Station is the stop after Stadium Station.)

Driving there was possible. It was Sunday, and street parking is free and available. Taking two cars to the crowded Uwajimaya parking lot would be a hassle, however. (Oddly, neither car2go nor ReachNow occurred to me. I guess that shows how far they’ve fallen from my mind.) While I was researching which bus could get us there, we both received text alerts: Shuttle bus service is running between University of Washington and Stadium.

We headed out the door, on our way to Capitol Hill Station. Before we got there, we both received text alerts. (Phillip, we discovered, gets his alerts about two seconds before mine.) Link service had been restored between University of Washington and Westlake, with bus shuttle service between Westlake and Stadium.

We took light rail to Westlake, and then moved to the front of the platform, as instructed by the Sound Transit staff on hand. (My thumbs up to Sound Transit for organizing this emergency so well.)

Our light rail train reversed at Westlake, traveling north on the southbound train until, I assume, it switched over tracks around the curve. I understood then why the wait at Capitol Hill Station was so much longer than usual.

Several buses, including the 150, arrived at once. I didn’t know where any of these buses went, exactly, so we waited for the 97 Link Shuttle.

We exited the shuttle at Stadium Station, where a southbound train was waiting on the northbound tracks for us, along with a Sound Transit employee to guide us. (Man, they threw this thing together well.)

We rode Link one stop to Sodo Station. That’s when we discovered that the 150 bus stopped right there. Oh, well.

Brian and Kathi were waiting at the museum. We weren’t terribly late.

I had a great time at the Living Computer Museum. Brian and I had many great conversations about our computer histories. It’s a very good museum, full of informative and interactive displays.

After the museum, we got into their full-sized van and Kathi drove us to Chinatown. The line of cars getting into the parking lot was frustratingly long, so we agreed to find someplace else for lunch. Phillip suggested Rancho Bravo, and we agreed to that.

As we drove through Capitol Hill, Kathi and Brian told us stories of when they lived in the area, and pointed out how much things had changed. So, there was a benefit to that change in plan.

Kathi managed to find a spot in the Rancho Bravo parking lot that she could maneuver the van into. We had a nice lunch, we all said goodbye, with them driving north to Everett and us walking home.

Meanwhile, Phillip has been discovering that he’s been using less than 5 gigs monthly on his phone’s Unlimited Plan. So, as soon as we got home, we changed his plan down to the same as mine: 10 gigs per month. That’ll save us a little bit of money.

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