Day 31 – Seattle Sights, Friends, Uber Rides

After my parking debacle the previous day, I ordered an Uber Pool to take me to downtown Seattle to do some more sight-seeing. It only cost about $6 each way, making it a much better option than driving myself.

If you’re not familiar with Uber Pool, it’s a shared Uber ride. Uber will find other riders nearby who are going in the direction you are going. If you select “express”, you have to walk about a block so that you’re on a main street or a pick-up point. Same with the drop-off. You might walk a block or two so the driver can drop you off in a spot that’s convenient for them. It makes the ride cheaper and I don’t mind walking so I choose it when it’s available.

When I got in the Uber, there was a man and a woman in the backseat who did not know each other. I sat in the front seat and couldn’t really see the man behind me. But when I got in, I saw that he was very tall and very muscular with large blonde dreadlocks. I had to move the seat back a little so I could fit my legs inside and he was very friendly – joking how he’s used to being in small cars. The woman next to him was around 25 years old with long, straight, blonde hair.

I talked about how hot it was outside and how I traveled north so I could avoid the hot summer in southern California, but the heat seemed to be following me. The man said he’s an archeologist and at a recent world conference he had recently attended, one scientist said people are flocking up north to live, if you look at the data. He said they want to be away from the equator because their natural instincts are to flee the heat, and biologically, they’re getting ready for climate change. I thought that was pretty interesting. Maybe it’s in our DNA to escape the blazing heat and we can sense the changing weather.

The Uber ride was only about 10 minutes long and I was dropped off first. I had a great time talking with them. The thing about Uber pool is that you get a chance to meet and talk with people you might not meet otherwise.

I arrived at the Museum of Pop Culture, which looks like the future on the outside. On the inside, a huge guitar sculpture greets guests. The museum is a nonprofit museum dedicated to contemporary popular culture. It has multiple sections that showcase different categories. For example, there is section on Nintendo, Grunge Music, and famous sci-fi films.

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After being awed at the museum, I walked down the street to a little coffee shop to meet a friend for lunch. I ordered a coffee and a sandwich and sat at a table outside. Jinah, a friend I met at work, had recently moved to the Seattle area. Jinah arrived and we caught each other up on our lives over the last six months – when she decided to leave the company.

Jinah had been enjoying Seattle, but recognized that while the summer was nice – winter might be another story. She told me about jobs she was considering as she hunted for employment. Being a Recruiting Manager for four years, I was surprised to hear about how some companies treat candidates – especially in this market of low unemployment. Companies were taking weeks to get back to her and left her sort of hanging. Jinah is incredibly smart with an impressive educational background, so I have complete confidence she’ll find a job soon.

It was really fun catching up with Jinah and sharing stories about our last six months. We said our goodbyes and I headed to the Space Needle. My ticket allowed me to go to the top during the day and again at nighttime. In line, I chatted with a family from the Midwest who was on vacation. They were only there for a few days and were exhausted doing all of the sightseeing. We agreed that as exhausting as it all was, we couldn’t miss the Space Needle.

The Space Needle was built in 1962 for the World’s Fair. It’s such a cool design so I took the elevator to the top and walked all the way around it – seeing the entire city. It was a clear day with blue skies but it was sort of uncomfortable getting around all the people to take pictures.

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After the Space Needle, I went to the Chihuly Garden and Glass museum. This museum features the studio glass of Dale Chihuly. If you’ve ever seen glass-blowing, it’s that, but like the best there is. The galleries feature beautiful pieces and share the story of his work. Some of the pieces are so big, they are suspended from large ceilings; one even hangs from a glass ceiling that looks up to the Space Needle. The garden outside also includes some the pieces and the colors are spectacular.

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I was ready for dinner after all of the sightseeing so I walked about a 1-2 miles downtown to the harbor and ate some fish and chips. I strolled around the giant Ferris wheel as I ate some ice cream. Those are the moments I wish I had a partner to enjoy the sights with.

The sun started to set so I walked back to the Space Needle to see the views at night. The line wasn’t bad at all and I quickly made it back up there to watch the night time views (with hundreds of people crowding around).

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On the way back to my Airbnb, I ordered an Uber Pool Express. This time I sat in the backseat with a woman in her early 20s. Another woman in her late 20s was in the front seat. The woman next to me had on a very tight red dress, lots of make-up, and big curls in her long black hair. She looked very unfriendly – the type that only talks to people she deems acceptable. She had her window rolled down and the wind coming in was very cold. I desperately wanted to ask her to roll it up but she didn’t seem to be getting any of the clues that the other woman, the driver, and myself were all giving indicating we were cold.

The driver was having a hard time finding her apartment so she was giving him attitude about where it was. When we arrived to her apartment and she was close to getting out of the car, I said, “Could you roll up your window when you exit?” She very rudely said, “You could have asked me to roll it up earlier if you were cold.” Then she rolled it up, and got out of the car. I thought, How rude! However, once the window was rolled up, I realized the driver had on such strong cologne that it was making me sick. I was happy to get out of that car. Hey, they can’t all be great Uber Pool experiences.

Post Edited by: Misty Kosek

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