Posts Tagged ‘tunnel’

Seafair Weekend

August 3, 2014

Today is the hydroplane races and the program by the Blue Angels.  It is the last weekend of Seafair, though it doesn’t have the same feel it did when I was growing up. It was for only a week or two and there was a lot of excitement about the different neighborhood parades, the crowing of miss Seafair, the Seafair parade, the Torchlight parade and certainly when the pirates came ashore.  Now that it is for a least a month or more, it feels as if it passes by very quietly.  Maybe I just grew up in a more innocent time – without cell phones in every hand.

The Blue Angels have been practicing since Wednesday – I know when the I-90 bridge is closed because the planes all come over the house.  The wind has been from the north, so they have been taking off that way and then make a sharp left turn to go south or not so sharp to go north.  There are those who complain about them every year but it is only for a few days.  I thing I notice is when I hear the Blue Angels, they have already passed by.  They also have several Osprey  helicopters this year – they came by the house Wednesday and I have heard them a couple of other times.

Eddie is glad he isn’t at the Museum of Flight today – it is usually a zoo.  Today is his first day volunteering at the LeMay American Car Museum in Tacoma.  The Volunteer Coordinator was quite impressed with his resume and the two references he gave. Now he will be there the Sunday he isn’t at the Museum.  He is now doing things for PNAA and getting paid for it.  he had 4 students and the professor the other week and had a lot of fun with them.  he has just been asked to be Volunteer Coordinator for their events.  he will find out more about it when he goes the meeting on Aug. 26th.

This weekend has felt a little strange – he took a vacation day on Friday and it has felt a bit odd ever since.  He came with me to see Mom Friday – she was doing pretty well and was willing to have a back rub.  She was pleased to see Eddie and enjoy the cookies and chocolate I brought.  i read for a bit and then we left.  I know he was itching to leave but he didn’t show it very much this time.

We went down to LeMay for him to pick up his red logo shirt and I met the Coordinator.  Very nice woman and friendly.  Then we did some of our errands and came home.  It has been warm the past week or more, a little rain early in the week but  just enough to settle the dust.  I’m ready for a good steady rain to refresh everything.

Saturday it rained early for a short while, then thunder and another shower.  We were sitting at the table looking out and not only was it raining, the sun was shining.  I didn’t see a rainbow but I saw something I never saw before – every once in a while the sun would shine on a raindrop and it looked like a diamond falling from the sky.  It reminded me of the first time I saw fireflies in New Jersey.  Several times it thundered and rain for a bit – one point it was hailing as well.  Then it all quit and no chance of rain again.

I don’t know if anyone outside Seattle has heard of Big Bertha and the tunnel under the city – a tunnel that is going nowhere fast.  This is to replace the Alaskan Way Viaduct – 4 lanes to take 6 lanes of traffic.  I don’t quite see how that computes, plus they are going to charge to use it.  So far I have heard they are going to charge $5 each way.  No idea what it will be when the tunnel is in use, if it ever is.

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I doubt I will use it not only because of the toll but mostly because I am claustrophobic and this doesn’t look very conducive to feeling relaxed.  But that is the plan.  This is Big Bertha:

Twitter-profile

It’s quite something and huge – the men below look like small toy people.

There have been more than one hiccup – first a pipe they didn’t know was there, then the blade needed replacing and this time it has been stuck for months because they have to figure out a way to get to the front to fix it.  This is what it is like for the first 1000 feet, not a quick boring machine.  There are still miles to go.

bertha-boring

I’m sure it all makes sense to the builders but it is definitely not my cup of tea.

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These concrete pieces are piled up all over the work area.  They look smaller as one goes up and down the S curve ramp by the side of the digging.

As you can tell, I am not in favor of this thing.  They needed to repair the Viaduct and then hire a Trompe l’oeil  artist to paint beautiful columns on the sides since a lot of people talk about how ugly it is.  I don’t think it is, but maybe I am too traditional.  It would be a whole lot less money and it wouldn’t screw up traffic so much.

1-Trompe-l-oeil_Bridge-Mural

This is a flood wall but supposed they painted some cool columns

 They never put a proper bill on the ballot for us to vote for or against – that sucks.  Politicians seem to ignore voters unless it suits them.  We have 2 stadiums side by side – one was voted down at least 3 times and  they went behind our backs to do it anyway.  They had been talking about another stadium a mile or so south for a basket ball team – give us a break!  Lately all is quiet about that but it is likely to come up again.

Oh my, I didn’t mean to rant on about the tunnel, maybe I have been keeping it in for too long.

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