This is the second of a series of posts dealing my fourth trip to Seattle and first of two trips that year. I’ve made minor corrections to these reports. Also, I’ve added additional thoughts with the hindsight of five years later or to add further clarification; I use “NOW” to denote such cases.
Always hard to sleep on first night and still sleepy as I type this (some people's alarm went off at 2 am, apparently when they had to leave), but I'm awake at least. Looks like rain more or less for the near future. Well, if it rains while I'm at a zoo, that will take care of crowds nicely.
Rearranging my schedule according to my moods. Today I'll grab some bus schedules at the Conference Center and/or ferry terminal, do a little more exploring downtown, then tackle Bellevue, originally scheduled for May 15, but the bus timings should be identical.
Lots of ground covered today. Pardon any typos. Don't want to hog the computer too long.
Went to the Conference Center, grabbed some bus schedules, took pics of the artwork there, walked to Freeway Park.
Went to the bus tunnel and took a bus to Bellevue. Visited Downtown Park which has lots of ducks and some geese. It also has a pond with water pouring down into it on one side by a short but long artificial waterfall. Took a quick peak at Bellevue Square, bought a book at Barnes & Noble, and took pics of the outside of the Doll Museum, which wasn't yet open. I missed a bus and so went for a walk and found another artificial lake, ironically with a fire truck nearby. Missed another bus but soon made it the 40 or so blocks (from doll museum) to Pawn X-Change, then walked to Crossroads Shopping Center
At Crossroads visited Barnes & Noble, Silver Platters (bought DVD), Half Price Books (ditto), and Blockbuster. There was also a giant chess board inside the mall.
[NOW: That Silver Platters has since moved but is still in the mall. That Blockbuster is now defunct.]
I tried to find some stores in the 500 block nearby, but the blocks seems to skip from 400 to 600 so finally gave up. I missed another bus from Bellevue to Redmond, but found another bus that intercepted it by the Microsoft HQ .
In Redmond I visited Half Price Books (bought another DVD), then Redmond Town Center (a bit hard to find but very cute to look at), where I visited Comic Stop, ate lunch at Pizza Schizza, then visited Borders.
[NOW. Pizza Schizza is now defunct, as is the entire Borders franchise].
O the way back to the transit center visited McDonald's Book Exchange (I guess even Ronald reads sometimes), then since I was now very much ahead of schedule and had visited my itinerary for today, took an express bus to near the University District.
[NOW: Of course McDonald’s Book Exchange is unrelated to the food franchise. The bus I took was probably the 545 Sound Transit.]
At the University of Washington rested at Drumheller Fountain, where I noticed a bit of helicopter building. There were a lot of police cats, fire trucks etc. near the Husky Union Building. After a quick stop at said building where I visited the book store, I went back and overheard something about it being serious and there being a weird smell.
[NOW: The last couple times I visited, the Husky Union Building has been under renovations, during which that branch of the University Bookstore has been closed.]
Visited the Barnes & Noble at University Village, which had spitting ceramic frogs (in the outside area of the village, not at B&N). I visited a nearby Blockbuster, then with a lot of effort found a way to the main university area (I doubled back to the university and found a path).
[NOW: I’ve since figured out the most direct way to the main shopping area of the University District. That area’s Barnes & Noble and Blockbuster are both now defunct.]
I visited Twice Sold Tales (I petted one of the store chain's trademark dispassionate cats), Cellophane Square, Al's Music, Satisfaction Records (bought a DVD). The Dreaming (a disorganized comic shop) was closed, so next went to Scarecrow Video (got another DVD), Cinema Books, Half Price Books (got a DVD), then visited the Wall of Death. The Wall of Death is pretty G-rated, located under a bridge. Spikes hold up a sign that says "Wall of Death"
[NOW: That branch of Twice Sold Tales as well as Cellophane Square is now defunct. Satisfaction Records is now a ways north of the University District.]
Near Neptune Records someone tried taunting me in some unfamiliar language. After Neptune visited Zanadu Comics, then thought I'd lost my passport, but just misfiled it.
[The University District branch of Zanadu Comics is now a Comic Stop.]
At University Bookstore bought a couple bottles of Vanilla Coke. then visited Bulldog News, Magus Books, 2nd Time Around Records.
[NOW: 2nd Time Around Records is now defunct.]
I took a bus to Seattle Center and took a photo of the Fremont troll along the way. I rested at the International Fountain (where the fancy benches had been replaced with regular ones), then since I still had a transfer took a bus downtown, where I unloaded my stuff. I clarified some confusion cause by my earlier booking difficulties just before unloading stuff. Visited Left Bank Books, First & Pike News, Swerve (bought a DVD), Pioneer Video (ditto), Elliot Bay Book Company. After that a guy dressed like a pimp said he had a pic for me. Decided to ignore.
[NOW: Swerve recently closed down. Pioneer Video and Elliot Bay Book Company were both in the Pioneer District. The former is now in the First Hill area as Third Man Video and the latter is now in the Capitol Hill area.]
Ate dinner a Quiznos, then stopped briefly at FYE at Westlake Center, which was closing for the eve. Visited Barnes & Noble at Pacific Place, and went to another floor and took pics of the penguin made of scrap metal. Visited the former site of the Youth Hostel International (now an apt), went up Harbor Steps (no statues this time), visited Kress, a grocery store that's a bit underground. Whew.
[NOW: That branch of FYE is now defunct.]