My day started at 5:15 to get moving for the airport. Arrived right at 2 hours early to find that there was no curbside or self service check-in for Alaska Air. By the time I waited in line to check a bag and then waited in line again for security I made it to the gate after boarding was well under way. Slow start to the day, hopefully not a harbinger of things to come!
Through some mysterious means we arrived in Seattle 45 minutes early, quite a gift on that long a flight. Sun was shining, so things looked good already! My bag was waiting by the time I walked to baggage, and then out the door to try the Link rail system for the first time. Turns out it’s quite a walk, all the way through/around the parking garage (if you have one of the rental luggage carts you can take it almost all the way). Think it would be less than fun if it was colder and you were trying to herd kids too. $2.50 to take the train into downtown, cash or credit card, and then up to sit on the train and wait for it to depart. I was checking in at home when I saw Jorge Segarra and Ken Simmons go by, they figured out how to push the big red button (literally you push one to open the door) and not long after that Andrew Karcher joined us. Nice ride into town, didn’t time it but seemed like half an hour. Great value compared to $15 for bus or $40 for town car, though with the latter you can usually get a group together and split the cost. The train landed us at 5th & Pike (same as the monorail station), and then just a short walk to the Sheraton which had my room ready even though it was only noon.I had asked for a room on a lower floor because I know from experience that a ‘quick trip to the room’ can turn into 20 minutes if you end up stopping at every floor as you’re likely to do during busy periods. So ask though I had, I still wound up on 33. Could have argued, but would have had to wait to check in.
Met Ken Simmons downstairs for lunch, decided to head for Vons Roasthouse for lunch, my theory being to adapt to local time for meals right away. Ken and I talking as we walk, guy in front of us turns to ask if we were here for the Summit, so we met Gordon and invited him to lunch. Announced it on Twitter and soon were joined by Johan Bijnens and Michael Decuir (and spouse!). I ordered the ‘worlds greatest hamburger, which while maybe not greatest, was very good. Long leisurely lunch and chat.
Back to the room to check email and calendar, then off to the Convention Center for a meeting with Rushabh, discussing my portfolio, workload, and in general things PASS. That started a bit late and ran a bit long, was time well spent though. Somehow the afternoon flew by and I met up with Sri Sriharan to walk to Lowell’s for the Sunday night meetup. Arrived at 5:30 to connect with GM Jeremy Barto, then grabbed a table to relax. Not long into that realized I had forgotten to step at Office Depot, so Sri took off to get those while I started welcoming attendees. By 6:30 we were close to full on the 2nd floor and by 7 pm we were putting people on the third floor. For a while it was borderline chaos, we had expected 50-75, had a 100+ attend and the wait staff was working! They did a great job, everyone seemed to find a place to sit and a drink, and a lot of people stayed for 2+ hours. We finally wrapped up a little after 9 pm. Lots of new faces in the crowd, lots of first timers to PASS, and lots of good conversations. Aside from wishing we had a couple more table staff I thought it went well and hope to do it again next year.
Tim Mitchell met just as we were leaving, so we walked back with him and split up, me calling it a night to get ready for Monday.
Not a bad first day at all!