Saturday, August 17, 2013

saturday in seattle

Heading north into Seattle on I-5 with lots of locals
Today I headed north from Dupont to Seattle. The goal was a Flicker meetup with some of the locals, notably with Paula Thomas, a.k.a. gapey on Flickr. But before I met up with them I traveled into the heart of Seattle (or a bit into Seattle) to just look around a smidge. I've never been to Seattle, and I don't know when I'll be back. For today's very brief sojourn into Seattle I got off on 1st Avenue South via the West Seattle bridge, found a spot to park, and then got out and walked about.

Before I finally parked I drove north up 1st Avenue to check out what was there, and was amazed and tempted to stop multiple times with my camera by all that I saw. In particular I drove past the Seattle Art Museum (SAM) and then turned south at Pike Fish Market. I'm headed back downtown early tomorrow morning to visit SAM and to walk more of 1st Avenue, and possibly down around the harbor.

In driving around, espeically back and forth on the West Seattle bridge, it dawned on my just how big the Seattle harbor really is.

I have no doubt that Seattle has been photographed to death, by far better photographers than I, but still, it is a chance to get out, stretch my legs, and enjoy the city as well as try to rise to the challenge of viewing it just a tad bit differently. A lot of the time I didn't bother to use the camera, just walking and appreciating the weather and the vistas of a new (to me) city unfold all around me.




Being in Seattle I had to see if the Starbucks coffee is any different here than elsewhere. I must report that it is a strong and bitter here in Seattle as in Orlando. I prefer Dunkin' Doughnuts and other milder brands, especially if I can brew my own coffee.

Along with the coffee I had a toasted bagel (plain), and then sat at a table to enjoy the bagel and wash it down with some of the coffee. It is a very nice Starbucks, with a touch of ambiance missing from ever other Starbucks I've been in around Orlando (there's three I know of). I noted that everybody was reading something at the Starbucks, divided between electronic and old fashioned print. The electronic folks were inside, while the old fashioned print readers were outside. I was inside with my AT&T cellphone trying to use my Google Maps to find the Flickr meetup location because Google Maps refused to load maps over the AT&T 4G network. Ironically I was able to get Google Maps working over the AT&T WiFi at the Starbucks.

Which leads me to another annoying feature loss with Google Maps; I can't download a static copy of a map on my handset. I did last year while in Toronto, and it was an incredible help navigating around that city. But it appears that feature has been removed. Google is beginning to really annoy me with their arbitrary and capricious changes to their applications and services, which reduce the usability and usable features. I used to be a strong supported of Android, but not so much any more. I think it's time for me to move on to something else besides all Google all the time.


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