Sunday, June 15, 2008

SLA Seattle Diary Part 1

An eerie start to Leary's trip to Seattle for the SLA Conference. On the plane, Leary sat next to someone twice as large as their (middle) seat. No, that's not the eerie part, that's rather common. After 5 1/2 hours on the flight, Leary stumbled upon the fabled $1.50 bus from the airport to the convention center. The first bus by the same fabled number (194) was going the other way ("No downtown! No downtown! Welcome to Seattle," sez the driver). The second one really does go downtown so Leary enters and tries hard to find one of the few remaining open seats, even though this is a double bus. Leary's first time in Seattle. He was surrounded by people speaking Russian.

Leary gets off when he sees everyone else leaving, figuring, accurately, that when most passengers exit, we have reached "downtown." Leary spots a downtown map as someone wearing a local uniform and holding what looks like a flashlight (it's noon and the sky is very bright) asks Leary where he's headed and points him in the direction of the convention center, 4 blocks away.

Once inside, Leary registers and then looks for the wireless lounges. One is in the South Atrium area. Several vacant tables. But there are no ac plugs anywhere near the tables! Leary travels to the other advertised wireless lounge, outside the Cyber Cafe. Three sets of couches. It looks like someone ran an ac extension cord to 2 of the couches, but not the third. Naturally, most seats were taken by people not using computers.

Leary discovers a room with tables and no obvious purpose other than to serve as a room for people to sit down at tables. Two people are using computers and they are plugged into ac wall sockets. Leary's ac socket is in the floor, not the wall! Leary's ac plug doesn't fit into the floor socket! Two people (not using computers, it will be a common thread one suspects) leave and Leary commandeers their table because it has a wall plug nearby. His ac plug fits!
No small matter when one arrives with an Asus Eee with a battery that lasts probably no more than 2 hours.

To be continued.

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