West Edge?

Phillip and I rode light rail to Downtown today, took advantage of the Smithsonian Magazine’s Free Museum Day, and spent the morning at the Seattle Art Museum.

While we were waiting for the museum to open, Phillip spotted a very small sign, high up on a lamp post, that said “West Edge”. He asked me what West Edge is. I looked it up (yea smart phones!) and learned that West Edge is (or wants to be) a neighborhood of Seattle. According to the West Edge Neighborhood Association, the borders of West Edge are Union Street, Second Avenue, Columbia Street, and Alaska Way. There’s something new I learned today.

After the museum, we walked over to Pike Place Market. We had lunch at Sound View Cafe, right before the place got packed. We explored the weird and fascinating shops in the lower market, where few tourists venture.

I bought shampoo at The Soap Box. While the woman was mixing my tangerine sea kelp shampoo, she told me that they were selling a lot of shampoo today, and mostly to “boys”.

We stopped into Metzger Maps, where Phillip bought a map of evolution we’d seen several months ago.

Then we rode a 49 bus home.

Returning Discs

Phillip had a NorWesCon meeting today. He’d planned on taking the car.

Season Two of Supergirl was due back at Scarecrow Video today. At first, that seemed like a logistics problem. But, I figured, there are buses in the area. I could get reasonably close to Scarecrow. Or, I could get lucky and find a car2go or ReachNow in the neighborhood. (I keep forgetting about Zipcar!)

I looked into it, and discovered that the combination of Link light rail and route 67 would work perfectly.

Meanwhile, Phillip discovered how bad traffic was predicted to be this weekend, and decided to take Link. That freed up the car for me. But I decided to still take public transit, enjoy the scenery, and maybe spend some time exploring the U District on my own.

This morning, Phillip left to walk up to Capitol Hill Station and ride Link and RapidRide A to the meeting. I took a shower and walked up the hill a little later.

Along the way to Capitol Hill Station, I dropped a DVD into the mailbox to return it to Netflix. The film was Dark Horse. We watched it last night.

Dark Horse is a wonderful, delightful documentary about a group of people in an ex-mining town in Wales who form an alliance, paying £10 per week, to breed and race a horse they name Dream Alliance. They go into this project knowing they have no hope of winning a single race. Professional horse racing is not a sport for the working poor. They don’t even have enough money to breed a horse from a quality lineage. But they try it anyway.

The story of Dark Horse is told to us by the people who were involved in the crazy project.

I got to Capitol Hill Station and had a 4 minute wait for a train to University of Washington Station.

Campus SignI exited University of Washington Station and walked over the bridge into campus. The bus stop was close by. According to my research, the 67 runs every 15 or 20 minutes. OneBusAway told me the next 67 would arrive in 11 minutes. I was in no hurry. Less than a minute later, a 67 bus arrived.

The 67 got me a block and a half from Scarecrow Video. I arrived at Scarecrow at 10:54. Scarecrow Video opened at 11:00. It hadn’t occurred to me to check their hours before I left home. Because it was a multi-disc set, Season Two of Supergirl wouldn’t fit though the “Night Drop” slot. So I read some more of Norwegian Wood on my phone while I waited outside.

At 11:00, Scarecrow Video opened, and I returned Supergirl. I browsed around a bit, and then I walked over to the bus stop on Roosevelt and 50th. OneBusAway told me a 67 was due NOW. I looked up the street, and there was a 67 a half-block away.

My plan was to exit on Campus Parkway and explore the U District for a while. Then I noticed that our 67 had turned into a 65. I decided to stay on a while, and see where the 65 goes.

I still don’t understand the reasoning behind a bus changing its route number in the middle of a route. I did some internet searching a while back, and I have yet to find a transit system in another major city that has this feature. It is a mystery.

I discovered that routes 65 and 67 are essentially one route. Having skipped the U District, I exited at University of Washington Station and rode Link back to Capitol Hill.

Here’s how the 65/67 works: Route 65 starts in Jackson Park and continues south through Lake City, through some neighborhood named Wedgwood, and into the University of Washington. At some point on the UW campus, it changes into a 67 and continues through the U District, north along 11th, and then Roosevelt, to Northgate. Then the 67 goes back south along Roosevelt, changing into a 65 somewhere in the U District, and continues on to Jackson Park. (Why is this not one route? Is there any city besides Seattle that does this? The mystery continues.) If I had studied Metro Transit’s map more closely before I left home, I wouldn’t have been surprised by this, but I’d planned by trip with Google Maps, and used Metro’s web site just to check the frequency of the 67.

I exited Capitol Hill Station and decided to have some traditional “Phillip’s at a NorWesCon meeting” phở on Broadway. I came to a new restaurant named Poke & Sushi, however, and decided to give it a try. I didn’t actually know what poke is, but the guy behind the counter was helpful and friendly.

I had tuna and white rice, with traditional poke sauce, with green onions, tofu, and edamame. I had a Fat Tire beer to go with it. It was tasty. I’d go back there.

Fried Chicken

Today, Phillip and I took a streetcar joyride to the International District. Basically, it was an excuse to escape the heat in our apartment.

I love the First Hill Streetcar. It’s comfortable and roomy. It offers some great views of the city.

We exited the streetcar at 5th and Jackson, and started walking at random. Phillip spotted a place named Seoul Tofu House. We agreed to go in for lunch. We’d never been there before.

Phillip had the Spicy B.B.Q. Pork with Soft Tofu Soup combo.

I decided on something called Fried Chicken. The photo on the menu showed what looked like a huge plate of fried chicken. I ordered it because I was curious what the Korean take on fried chicken would taste like.

Our food was delicious. Don’t misunderstand me. Phillip’s combo was delicious and my fried chicken was delicious. My fried chicken, however, was fried chicken – just like what you’d find at an American picnic. It was a little disappointing – but I’m not complaining. The plate was just a huge as the photo showed. I ended up getting a box to go.

In our wandering, we saw a tiny Japanese delivery truck, with right-hand drive, parked on the street. It was for sale. Later, we saw a tiny Japanese van, with right-hand drive, also for sale, by the same company. We’re not in the market for a truck or van, but they looked pretty cool.

We browsed around Konokuniya bookstore, and Uwajimaya. Then we browsed around Daiso. Phillip bought one little Halloween decoration at Daiso, and that’s the only thing he bought. It was very unlike him to do so much browsing and so little buying. I didn’t buy anything, which is not unlike me.

After Daiso, we rode the streetcar back to Capitol Hill.

We stopped into Phoenix Comics and Games, where Phillip picked up the latest Squirrel Girl, which he had on hold, and I bought Volume Five of Saga.

We stopped into Rocket Fizz, where I spent thirty dollars on candy, and Phillip, keeping with the theme of the day, bought nothing.

Then we walked home and ate leftover fried chicken while we watched another disc of Supergirl.

The Bus Route That Must Not Be Named

The 47 bus didn’t show up again this morning. And, once again, I didn’t receive a text alert about the service disruption.

I got to work on time, of course. I walked over to Olive Way and caught a 10. A couple of people from my bus stop did, too. Another rider caught up with the 10 on Pine Street. I saw one other person walking to Downtown.

I filed a complaint with Metro Transit when I got to work. My complaint was not that the 47 didn’t show up. (With the narrow streets in my neighborhood, all it takes is one delivery truck to bring the 47 to a halt.) My complaint was that I never, ever receive text alerts about the 47, and I wanted to know why. I added that I’ve signed up for text alerts for several routes in my general area, as well as Link light rail and the First Hill Streetcar, and I receive those with no problem. It’s only the 47 that Metro seems to forget.

Metro Transit’s complaint system is so automated that I don’t expect a reply that actually addresses my concern. I just felt the need to complain.

It wasn’t the first time I’ve voiced this concern. I added it in a comment in a recent Rider Survey.

Last week, I received a text alert that read: “Transit service will be rerouted during the Mercer x Summit Block Party on 8/19”. This is my point: There was only one route rerouted by that block party, and it wasn’t specified in the alert. Metro can’t even name the 47.

That’s the end of my rant. For now.

I was moved into my new cubicle today. I’m now on a lower floor, and farther away from the bathroom, the lunchroom, and the coffee pots. Those are the only negatives.

I’m in a much nicer space now – even better than any desk I had before the temporary move into the conference room. I sit with my back to the window, as I did before the move, but now, for the first time, there are no cubicles between me and the view. The view is more interesting than before, too. (There’s more variety of things to see.) And when I do stop admiring the view and get back to work, my group is in a better layout than before.

After a not-so-happy commute, my workday turned into a nice change of scenery.