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Ingress in West Seattle

On Saturday, Susan and I spent the day in West Seattle doing an Ingress mission series.

The ceiling of Luna Park Cafe
The ceiling of Luna Park Cafe

We started out at Luna Park Cafe, a decent breakfast place. You have your omelettes, you have your hash browns, you get fortified for the day.

Towards the start of the mission series
Towards the start of the mission series
We got all the retro you need up here
We got all the retro you need up here
Where the carousel once stood
Where the carousel once stood
Looking off towards Blake Island
Looking off towards Blake Island
Hills of Seattle across Puget Sound
Hills of Seattle across Puget Sound
Symbolic of something or other
Symbolic of something or other

Following breakfast, we had a nice walk down Alki Beach around the tip of West Seattle. It’s a great mini-beach town, with restaurants and condos and beach shacks and fire pits on the beach, plus a lot of history. This was the original landing place of the Denny Party, but was not all that suitable for long term habitation. Explains the miniature Statue of Liberty, though.

The Pokemon Go phenomenon continues in Top Pot Donuts
The Pokemon Go phenomenon continues in Top Pot Donuts
Top Pot redeemed by bookshelves
Top Pot redeemed by bookshelves

Top Pot Donuts does a really nice donut, definitely worth the stop. The Pokemon Go donuts were unexpected. We got non-thematic donuts and retreated to the bookshelves to enjoy them.

View of the tiny but cool Alki Lighthouse from the road
View of the tiny but cool Alki Point Lighthouse from the road

Pause: this is the Alki Point Lighthouse from the road. It is small but cool. We were too early for the tour but we’ll return to this later.

In which I realize, whoops, I hit 1500 missions a little while ago
In which I realize, whoops, I hit 1500 missions a little while ago

Around here I realized I’d hit 1,500 missions somewhere along Alki Beach. This is three times as many as needed to get the best badge, as per the screenshot. I am way behind the world-wide leader, who has over 9,500, and I am behind the US leader, who has over 4,000. But I have more than most.

Looking back up north from the west side of West Seattle
Looking back up north from the west side of West Seattle
Little used tennis courts in Lowman Park
Little used tennis courts in Lowman Park

More wandering along the coast ensued. West Seattle is pretty full of parks — I like where we’re living, in Ballard, but West Seattle has its charms.

Some time after we’ve reached Lincoln Park (not depicted), a friend reaches out and wants to know if we want to engage in some Ingress-related shenanigans. This is the kind of thing we say yes to on general principles, so we alter our plans. Without going into the gory details, I can admit that Susan got her library card; we got some really tasty fish and chips; and we went back up to Alki Point Lighthouse. Only some of those things are Ingress-related.

A NOAA weather station
A NOAA weather station
Alki Point Lighthouse, up close and personal
Alki Point Lighthouse, up close and personal
The view from the top of Alki Point Lighthouse
The view from the top of Alki Point Lighthouse

I completely recommend the Alki Point Lighthouse tour. It’s only on weekends, because the old lighthouse keeper house is now the home for the Commander of the Coast Guard 13th District, which covers the entire Pacific Northwest. The Admiral reasonably doesn’t want to give up too much of his privacy for the sake of tours. It’s a working lighthouse, and the Coast Guard Auxiliary members who give the tour have a decently interesting spiel.

Middle school propaganda of the day
Middle school propaganda of the day

Back to missioning. This is a mural at Alaska Junction, the commercial heart of West Seattle. The tiny text on the right blackboard reads “Thrift: The most important feature of the system is that it teaches the child the regular habit of thrift.” The mural happens to be on the side of a bank, so I’m not sure that the most important feature of the system wasn’t “trust banks,” but who can say for sure?

The Great Depression began six years after the mural was painted.

The time I realized I could get exactly 50 million AP
The time I realized I could get exactly 50 million AP

We continued up California Avenue to Admiral Way, which is also a bit of a commercial center. Around here I realized I was going to be able to make my stats come out at 50,000,000 AP exactly. So I drove Susan mildly nuts by screwing around with links and hacks and so on, and hit my numbers, woo! I think I’ll be able to avoid being that finicky again until I hit 100 million, which at my current rate will be safely after Ingress is cancelled.

A lovely view from Hamilton Viewpoint Park
A lovely view from Hamilton Viewpoint Park

The mission series completes in Hamilton Viewpoint Park, which is elegant — it’s a great view of the city once again. West Seattle really has all the best views.

The final product
The final product

And, at last, this is the mission mural we completed. 56 missions, which is the largest we’ve ever done. Hello, Seattle!

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