Our plan was to start out by walking from our hotel to the, according to Google Maps, rather nearby Best Buy electronics store and buying a GPS. After a few blocks of semi-aimless walking (in a rather ugly suburb, filled with yardsales) though, we were starting to question the closeness. We pushed on however, and as we were walking down our eight or ninth block we were greeted by a dog. The dog turned out to belong to a lady down the street and we stroke up a conversation. We told her that we were going to an electronics store that was supposed to be nearby and she started to describe the way. Turns out that we were about halfway there and that there is a rather steep hill to go down. We were in luck though, I guess the woman felt sorry for us and she told us that she and her daughter were going to church anyway and they could give us a ride. We figured that since they were good christians and very likable they would at least ask permission before raping and killing us, so we accepted the offer.
The daughter seemed a bit sceptical though but warmed up a bit in the car when we got to talking about the Seattle-native Starbucks and how it, to our knowledge, hadn’t established itself in Sweden. “I mean, they have it frickin’ Africa, it should be in Sweden as well!”. And after showing us where to catch the bus back to the airport they dropped us off at a Starbucks just a few yards from the Best Buy.
We sat down for a coffee to wait for the Best Buy to open (it was Sunday after all, so they didn’t open until 10). We had our mind set on the TomTom One XL, but the tattooed sales guy made a convincing case for the Garmin Street Pilot since they, according to him, came with infinite map updates once you bought a map. So we bought a c330 instead (I haven’t been able to upgrade the map yet though since it wants me to pay for it and then send me the map on a DVD, is that how it normally works?).
With our new GPS we trodded off to get the bus and yet again found out why the U.S. isn’t made for walking. When the bus finally came we found out that the bus drivers don’t carry change, and since we only had $20 bills this didn’t seem like a good deal. The good natured bus driver felt sorry for us though and said that we could ride for free to the airport.
At the airport we went and got change and caught the bus to downtown Seattle. As we were planning to go the Sci-Fi museum (which is up by the Space Needle at Seattle Center) we bought tickets for the famous Seattle monorail (key Simpsons Monorail-song!). Apparently it was build at the same time as the Space Needle, that is, in time for the World’s Fair in 1962, a taste of the future indeed! But, as fate would have it, the train we were supposed to board had a flat tire(!) and was instead rolled away for maintenence. So we got a refund for our tickets and went to get ourselves fed in the food court situated in the same building.
We settled for mexican and I had a Chimichanga (which I up until then, thought was a made-up word). Afterwards we got in line for the monorail again and had some better luck this time. The monorail ride itself is rather, well, short. Only about a mile or so and since that is the only route it takes, it’s kindof pointless really. But it, along with the Space Needle, has served it’s role admirably in putting Seattle on the map.
The Sci-Fi museum was rather cool, it seems like most of the stuff came from Paul Allen‘s collection (which really makes him an alpha geek). We learned all sorts of important stuff, like the costume Seven-of-Nine wears prohibited her from wearing any kind of underwear since the lines would show. Also that the first Superman costume was sown out brown fabrics since the blue and red didn’t turn out that well on a black and white screen. They also had some other cool things like Indiana Jones’ whip and jacket and the hat of the Wicked Witch of the West.
After taking the monorail back we wandered aimlessly around the city center a while before taking the bus back to the hotel.