Sunday, February 12, 2006

Seattle - Month 1

Well I hadn’t updated this blog for quite some time and a lot has been happening so here’s an update.

Seattle is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful places I have seen in my life so far. It is not crowded with people and there’s lots of greenery. The city has breathtaking views of the beautiful lakes, the sea and the mountains. On a clear day one can enjoy the view of the snow-covered peeks of Mount Rainier. The downtown looks great too. I keep hearing that Seattle is the best during summer and I have absolutely no doubts about that.

The only bad thing is that it rains a lot here. So you have very little mobility if you don’t have a car of your own. After discussing with friends and reading up online articles I decided that my first car has to be a used car (vs. buying a new car, or leasing a new/used car). Microsoft is in the same city and a lot people you meet work for them. So the most preferable way to find good cars is to use the same website that those guys use to put up ads – However on any given day more ads are posted on Craigslist that on MicroNews.

It’s funny how people take pictures of their cars. Here are the pictures from an ad for Ford Bronco at Craigslist.

Call me paranoid, but after seeing pictures like these I become sure that there’s something wrong with the front of the car. Though I chose to show the pictures of a used Bronco, I have been strongly advised to not go for a Ford because they say it means Found On the Road Dead, or something like that.

I’m taking a bus to work and back these days. The bus ride is surprisingly easy. Based on my experiences with public transport in India, my expectations were honestly quite different. One of the advantages of traveling in a bus is that you get to meet new people. One day I met an old person around 55-60 years old who was originally from TN and had been in the US for 25 years. And guess what, he asked me about the Simputer and said that he had heard about it from someone. He had said that he had an engineering background and was working as a technician so the question wasn’t exactly surprising. I told him that the Simputer is costlier than the other hand-held computers available in India and is still not easily available to the people in villages which disappointed him. He asked me where I was from. I said Himachal and he said that he had been in Delhi for five years at which point I could see his voice cracking and some moisture in his eyes. I guess everybody has their story.

Anyways I am living in a two bed room apartment with a guy from Lebanon who’s working at Microsoft. He tells me how his country is in a state of total mess (not reusing his choice of words because this blog is for family viewing). He said that people didn’t exactly have addresses in most areas of his country so the addresses on the letters read something like this:

Mr. X
Y’s House
The One With Blue Windows
Located On The Z Mountain

(Where X, Y and Z are names; Y is typically a surname)

Mountains don’t generally have signs identifying them so if you’re a foreigner in that country, you’re basically lost.

As for food, I am living off of microwaving frozen-food but I’m happy because I actually find it tastier than what I had in the restaurants in Hyderabad.


Jagadeesh C said...

Nice to hear you having good time here. You sure must be kidding when you say frozen food is good compared to what you get in Hyd restaurants.

Jagadeesh C said...

Gimme your number and let me call you sometime.

Sid said...

I'm not kidding about frozen food. The frozen north-indian curries of the brands that I've consumed surely are better in taste than those in most restaurants in Hyderabad. I'll mail you my contact number.

Anonymous said...

i told u ! Seattle rocks.. esp. in summer

abhas1 said...

ooh mama!

seattle uncut, eh? I hope you continue posting like this!

btw, how's about a used hummer?? and did you find your way to circuit city??

Sid said...

@abhas1: Hummer is too big and wouldn't fit into all parking lots. I still have to visit Circuit City but I have been to another electronics store called Fry's a couple of times and that place is like heaven :)