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Bussing Broker: Week 11

The light rail station opened!  That didn’t help me all that much with today’s touring plans since I was up to the northwest neighborhoods, but I’ve been on and off the train more since the new Capitol Hill station opened on Saturday than I think I had the whole year prior.  It’s very nice to neither walk up the hill, nor wait for a bus that may or may not be faster than just walking.  Everybody else on the train seems pretty pleased with it, too.

Today’s tour was a bit complicated from the outset.  Getting from Capitol Hill to Greenwood isn’t the most direct or speedy of commutes in general.  Today had the extra foil of a man in a tree causing quite the diversion of attention downtown.

I’d like to take a moment just to pause here and reflect on this: my commute was disrupted by a man in a tree.  I’m not sure you could get more quintessentially Seattle, unless he was drinking coffee up there.

At any rate, the delays were enough, given the ground I needed to cover, that I cheated a little.  The Car2Go membership I signed up for after my car wreck so I could have it in case of emergency gave me 30 free minutes since I haven’t actually used it.  (Hurray, no emergencies!)  When I got downtown and realized I could drive to the first property in Greenwood before I could even get on the bus I wanted to get there, those 30 free minutes were looking pretty attractive.  So I hopped in.  Overall it was a pleasant experience that definitely rescued my day from becoming a cascading spiral of travel delays, but I’m also glad my first time driving a smartcar wasn’t while I had a client with me.  There was definitely some adjusting to do.

It was all feet and buses from there.  I didn’t quite get to everything I wanted to see, but I think it was a good showing all the same.

Location: Greenwood, North Beach, Ballard
Time: 3 hr
Transit modes: Feet, Bus, Car2Go
Cost: $5
Cats petted: 0
Tea consumed: n/a
Properties Viewed: 3

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Bussing Broker: Week 10

Today will get no prizes for efficiency.  The sun was out, I didn’t have any client commitments, and it feels like ages since I got in a good bike ride.  I had a productive morning and when lunch time came around I tromped merrily to my bike, ready to go look at some property.

I’m officially convinced that my front tire is cursed.  I thought it was fixed.  The very friendly folk at the bike shop assured me that everything was fine and diagnosed my series of flats as “bad luck.”  It must be very persistent bad luck because it struck again! So, no bike ride for me.

But the sun was still out, I still had a few hours I could comfortably spare, and there was still property I wanted to tour.  So I changed plans, hopped on the bus, and set off.

My original plan had been to take a look at properties in Laurelhurst and Ravenna.  The new plan required me to scale back and I only made it to Ravenna.  Bus service through those areas is not awesome in the middle of the day, and my feet are only so fleet. I only made it to half the properties I wanted to.

I’m not going to put this one in the fail column, though.  I didn’t realize it until today, but I’ve never walked up 55th through Ravenna.  You get a different feel for a commercial street on foot than you do driving, and I’d been missing that for this neighborhood.  So I may have seen less of what’s on the market, but I got a better feel for a neighborhood and that, especially in a market moving as quickly as this one, has much more value.

Also, I may or may not have spent some time at the Queen Mary Tea room.  If I did, it was entirely because I am that dedicated to knowing the gritty details of neighborhoods.

Location: Ravenna
Time: 2.5 hr
Transit modes: Feet, Bus
Cost: 2.50
Cats petted: 0
Tea consumed: Queen Mary Tea Room
Properties Viewed: 3

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Bussing Broker: Week 9

Granny successfully turned 95 and I got back late Tuesday night.  Despite starting the week behind, I made property tour happen.  I’m feeling extremely virtuous about this.  Also, I saw the sun!  It was out several times.  Also, it rained several times.  Many of these times overlapped.  I genuinely adore Seattle springs.

Tour today was a lunch time walk around Capitol hill.  Listings have been thin here so far this year, but it looks like they’re picking up a bit.  One of the units on tour today I’d seen last summer when I had clients looking at another in the building; it was impressive how much better it looks now.

Location: Capitol Hill
Time: 1.5 hr
Transit modes: Feet
Cost: 0
Cats petted: 0
Tea consumed: Tea Republik Peachy Litchee, Iced
Properties Viewed: 5

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Bussing Broker: Week 7

Oh my gosh, the weather today is gorgeous.  The mountains are out, and it was a great day for a walk.  I hopped on a bus to head over to Belltown for tour there and it was so nice that I walked up Alaskan Way to look at condo near Pike Place Market before coming back.  I couldn’t have designed a nicer lunch break, and not having to park in Belltown was approximately the best thing ever.

I would complain that this was the second tour day in a row where I did not encounter a single kitty, but I’m entirely too pleased with my mountain-view intake to mind.  Victories all around today.

Location: Belltown / Downtown
Time: 1.45 hr
Transit modes: Bus / Feet
Cost: $2.50
Cats petted: 0
Tea consumed: 0
Properties Viewed: 4

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Bussing Broker: Week 5 Part 1

Today was a trip to the U District-Wallingford-Green Lake corridor, with a showing in each.  It rained.  I got very damp.  Also got off to an inauspicious start when I missed not one, or two, but three buses I wanted to take to the first open in the U District.  That meant I didn’t leave my office in Capitol Hill until eleven when I’d meant to be at the first property by then.

Things recovered nicely from there, though, and the rain let up halfway through.  I was very pleased to have brought a thermos with tea in it.  English tea with bergamot and a bit of honey cures rain.

I had to transfer buses to get to the first open, but the transfer went smoothly! Bus from first to second, and foot to the third, then bus back to the office with another transfer en route.  But, I made the final transfer less than two hours after getting onto the first bus.  I call that success.

Location: University District, Wallingford, Green Lake
Time: 2.25hr
Transit modes: Buses / Feet
Cats petted: 1
Tea consumed: 1 Thermos
Properties Viewed: 3

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Bussing Broker: Week 3

This was a busy week full of client meetings and showings, so I didn’t make it to much of tour.  I did squeeze in two Capitol Hill properties today, though.  I’d hoped I’d get a chance to test out the new street car for tour, but the tour options weren’t convenient to the street car route.  That test will have to wait for another day.

Instead, I went on foot to two condos near the Group Health Hospital.  Both were cute, but neither had cats.  I’ll get to ride the street car this weekend, but this catless tour will never be repaired.  Alas.

Location: Capitol Hill
Time: 1 hr
Transit modes: Feet
Cats petted: 0
Tea consumed: None
Properties Viewed: 2

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Bussing Broker: Week 2 Part 2

There were four properties in Fremont and Ballard I wanted to see today.  The weather was okay and I was pretty excited because today was the day I was going to try biking to showings.  I was so excited, in fact, that I went rushing out of the office and left my helmet in the office.  I didn’t notice until I’d gone far enough that I did not want to turn around.  My office is on Capitol Hill – leaving is a much more pleasant experience than coming back by bike.  So I chased down a bus and still made it to Fremont in time for the first property I wanted to see on tour.

Half way between property one and property two, I noticed that my front tire was going flat.  I had just changed the tube in my front tire, so this was rather inconvenient.  I was already sticking to low traffic residential streets because I like my brains to stay securely inside my skull, but even I am not so stubborn as to try being a bicycle rider with one tire and no helmet.  I walked to the second showing, then hopped a bus back to the office.  My first great catastrophe of the experiment, but I still made it to half the tour, so I’m feeling more put out about missing a chance to get in a daylight bike ride when it wasn’t pouring down rain.

I’m counting the cost of the new tube against this tour, though.

Location: Ballard, Fremont
Time: 1.75 hr
Transit modes: Feet, Bus, Bike
Cats petted: 0
Tea consumed: One bottle water, no tea
Properties Viewed: 2
Cost: $7.98

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Bussing Broker: Week 2 Part 1

Lots of paperwork at the desk planned for today, so I ducked out around lunch time to take a look at two condos downtown and I only got a little wet.  One of the condos was in the Escala which usually leaves me snickering over certain literary associations.  The unit had some different finishes from most in the building, so that was a worthwhile trip on its own.  The other had a great view but suffered some noise from the viaduct, which means I’m really glad I visited – some clients will take the noise to get the view, others won’t, and now I know who to steer away.

It made a nice break for the day and I can honestly say I’d have skipped both rather than deal with parking downtown, so this is a clear win for the non-car column.

Location: Downtown
Time: 1 hr
Transit modes: Feet
Cats petted: 2
Tea consumed: One mug
Cost: $0
Properties Viewed: 2

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Bussing Broker: Week 1

I may have been slightly too enthusiastic about this project.  I dashed through my work for the morning and then hopped a bus up to Fremont with a plan to see four properties.  The bus got me there much faster than I’d expected it to.  So much faster that I was awkwardly early for the open of the first property.  I was forced to pass some time browsing the cookbooks at the Book Larder.  I’m feeling generous, so I’m not counting the expenses involved in that diversion against the project.  This time.

The weather was pretty pleasant, and I was armed with a thermos of tea which I sipped quite contently while wending my way from one property to the next.  It was definitely a bit slower than if I’d driven from property to property, but as anybody who’s tried to park in Fremont can attest, I saved a bundle of time by not having to park.  Probably a net loss for time by the clock, but definitely a huge gain in terms of avoiding frustration.

All told, it was an excellent and very encouraging start to the project. I’m excited to see how next week goes.

Location: Fremont, Green Lake, Ballard
Time: 2 hr
Transit modes: Feet, Bus
Cats petted: 1
Tea consumed: One Thermos
Cost: $5
Properties Viewed: 4