Work is closed for the day

I was wrong. Yesterday morning’s commute was not a problem. I drove to my office, then Mandrina took the car down to hers (yay all-wheel drive). Coming home, however, was a different story.

Go to the Seattle Traffic site. Go ahead, I won’t do much. Just take a glance at that map, then come back.

I work off 520 in Redmond. For those of you playing along at home, I work half a block south from 520, between the exit for 148th Ave NE and NE 40th.

Mandrina works just off SR 167 in Renton, one exit south of the 167-405 interchange.

She left her office at 5:15pm. She picked me up at 6:35pm. She got REALLY, really lucky. It took us another two hours — and 520 was useless, as 405 northbound was already blocked — to get to Kirkland — near 124th Ave NE and NE 124th St, right by 405. Then we made the wise decision to stop for dinner… and the bathroom. And for me to drive — that part may not be wise, but it made me feel better.

We stopped for dinner for just about an hour. We got back out, and if anything, traffic had gotten worse. 405 was still shutdown going north; cars that had been at the start of the on ramp when we got to the Pizza Hut were still on the on ramp when we left the pizza hut.

So I took backroads. I took one road I knew, then several I didn’t, and ended up back where I would have been if I hadn’t taken the several I didn’t. I went generally north on the north portion of 124th Ave NE (for those of you following along, this is north of the intersection of NE 124th and 405 but south of 160th and 405. When I got to the intersection with 160th (which took a long while; one lane road and all), I chose not to take 160th, as I figured most people would be, and I could just take 124th further north, and curve back around into Woodinville, then take back roads north from there.

Guess again!

On 124th we hit our first actual bad piece of road. It was ice, it was slush. Bruce is a good car, but it was also downhill and curving… and a bunch of idiots were also around. It was also stopped more or less dead going forward. I decided to make a U-turn, and went back to 160th… which was surprisinly clear, despite being a steeper hill. I soon found out why — the entrance ramps to 405 were closed. So I got to cruise by — all the traffic reports had said that 405 was blocked at SR-522 (the next exit north), but had said nothing about 160th. I didn’t really get a choice here. I took 160th all the way down to where it hit 100 NE (Jamie, you’re going to start recognize where we’re going now). I then went North on 100. Again, for a very, very, very long time. Then I made the first of two very smart decisions. I got off 100, and went west on Simonds Rd… which was EMPTY! Yay for Quattro, but it honestly wasn’t that bad. I took Simonds all the way to Juanita Dr / 64th NE in Kenmore… it’s no longer on the Traffic map, sorry. Aha! I can short cut now! This would be the complete map of the route we took.

We got home after 1 in the morning. I then needed to worry about getting up in time to go BACK into the traffic in order to get to work in time to interview some poor college candidate.

I’m currently in PJ’s at noon — the Microsoft campus was closed before I left for the office this morning, so I went back to bed.

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  1. Andrew says:

    Okay, it ate some of my map. *shrug*

    I give up.