notes from the road, part deux.

Friday, September 28, 2007: 2271km @ 10:12am

Purchased a coffee-table book as our last souvenir: the California Directory of Fine Wineries from Ramekins. Loaded up the car for the drive north. Realized I left my green winter coat at Rob and Jen’s. Oops.

2274km @ 10:16am

Kurt: “That sucks! I only have 3 days before I have to go back to work! …Do we have time for another drink?”

[Last time he was in the office was July 20th.]

2359km @ 11:15am

Entering Cloverdale and Hwy 128 to the California coast.

2368km @ 11:24am

Listening to: A Tribe Called Quest.

Windy, twisty, backroad and the Yorkville Highlands. Glimpses of hillside vines through the woods. Autumn colours everywhere. Gorgeous against the azure sky and golden grass. The grass has a life of its own, like a lion pelt covering the hills, suede and svelte. Kurt is rounding the curves with much delight (and a tiny bit of reckless abandon).

2389km @ 11:42am

Redwoods are starting to creep in from the west.

2403km @ 11:52am

Driving through the tiny town of Boonville. It looks like it’s all of 5 blocks, and yet it still has a drive-through espresso shop.

Revisiting potential car names. Eloisa? Eliza? Elisha? Yes! Elisha!

2415km @ 12pm

Driving through miles of apple orchard. Reminiscing about our server from girl & the fig that I couldn’t stop staring at. He probably thought I was checking him out all night. Unfortunately for him, the truth was that it had taken me all night to determine that he was an emo version of Kenneth from 30 Rock.

Kenneth from 30 Rock

2426km @ 12:08pm

Sign for town of Navarro. Population: 67.

2428km @ 12:10pm

Entering the Navarro River Redwoods State Park. In an instant, we are swallowed up by towering trees and the sun is completely blocked from view.

2450km @ 12:27pm

End of redwood forest. Start of the scenic #1 Hwy along the California coast. Fantastic views of…dense fog.

along the pacific coast highway

2496km @ 1:10pm

Listening to: TV on the Radio.

Pit stop north of Fort Bragg. Rocks jutting out of the sand as the surf roars. Someone left their old jeans on a rock near our parking spot. Sand is suprisingly warm and silken to the touch, despite the bitterness of the wind.

jeans along the california coast

beautiful sand

house on the cliff

2514km @ 1:41pm

Clusters of feathery reeds grow along the coast. Feels like we’re on the inside of a goose-down pillow.

feather reed grass

2534km @ 2:00pm

Listening to: The Who: Greatest Hits.

Forest innuendo. Amazing how many you can come up with relating to “wood”.

2580km @ 2:49pm

Cheesy roadside attractions include:

  • Real Treehouse! Believe It!
  • Confusion Hill of Mystery!
  • Legend of Bigfoot!
  • Hobbiton, USA
  • The Giant Living Chimney Tree!

2605km @ 3:04pm

Ran across a post office in Phillipsville. Finally bought a stamp to send Sunday’s postcard to Kurt’s parents.

2607km @ 3:07pm

That was quick–already by the Avenue of the Giants. Hugged our respective trees and briefly pretended that we were in the Forest of Endor.

tree-hugging karen

kurt hugs another tree

2696km @ 4:13am

In Eureka, CA for some eats. Missed the turn for Taco Bell so we would up trying a local place called Philly Cheese Steak Shoppe. Kurt had one with mushrooms and green peppers while I dared to be different with mushrooms and spinach. I was feeling particularly famished so a side of coleslaw was in order. Kurt got excited by the presence of Cherry Coke on the soda fountain machine, so that is what we chose for our shared beverage.

philly cheese steak shoppe storefront

philly cheese steak with mushrooms and spinach

After lunch, it was my turn to drive. Kurt’s entries follow.

2768km @ 5:50pm

Passing through Orick, CA. Orick Brewery installed in the old town movie theatre has a marquee that reads “WELCOME HOTTIES”.

2772km @ 5:54pm

Had to stop abruptly for actual elk crossing the road…I guess the signs were right.

actual elk, crossing

2834km @ 6:43pm

In Crescent City, CA. Gas station washroom had “freedom”-scented air freshener. God bless America!

2900km @ 7:35pm

Listening to: Kurt’s NLDC 2001 CD mix.

Welcome to Oregon! Bye, California =(

3081km @ 9:30pm

Listening to: Greatest hits from the Greatest Hits of the Eighties, Vols I and II.

Kurt now back behind the wheel at Roseburg, OR. He is a dismal documenter. Perhaps he was in thrall of my amazing driving ability.

3292km @ 11:26pm

Tried to fight my terrible car narcolepsy but alas, I succumbed. Guess I’m a poor documenter too.

Pulled into the Holiday Express Inn in Salem, OR. For $90, we somehow got a room with a deliciously luxurious king-sized bed and a 4-person jacuzzi tub. Kurt took advantage of the jets and worked out the giant knot on his shoulder from driving most of the day.

Saturday, September 29, 2007: 3292km @ 9:35am

Left the hotel after a quick breakfast and a fun episode of Mythbusters (Do you get less wet if you run through the rain? Nope!).

3332km @ 10:02am

If you find yourself in Oregon, listen to 94.7FM. It’s a really cool station for alternative music. I miss Nirvana. Gotta learn “The Man Who Sold the World” on the ol’ acoustic.

3351km @ 10:12am

Listening to: Sports radio…again.

Kurt feels adventurous so we take the Portland bypass instead of driving straight through. Managed to miss most of the morning traffic. Go Kurt!

3393km @ 10:36am

Crossing the Columbia river into Washington state.

3542km @ 11:52am

Listening to: Arctic Monkeys!

Waterslide of awesome springs into view just south of Olympia. Got belated shots of it this time, despite having the camera at the ready for the past 20 miles.

glimpse of the waterslide of awesome

glimpse of the funnel of the waterslide of awesome

3571km @ 12:07pm

Was somewhat more prepared for the drive-by shooting of the Washington state capitol building. Even with that, had to contort myself into odd angles to get a fuzzy shot of it from the back passenger window.

dome of the state capitol building

3588km @ 12:17pm

Listening to: Karen’s salsa mix.

Kurt shakes his booty to a little Celia Cruz.

3595km @ 12:20pm

Took 5 seconds to take off my fleece. Consequently, missed the photo op of the little town of Tillicum. (Heh.)

3606km @ 12:27pm

Kurt: “Welcome to Tacoma: Seattle’s ugly little sister.”

3666km @ 1:05pm

Gathered photos of Safeco Field and Qwest Field. Sped through Seattle this time; the express lanes were open in our favour.

seattle stadiums

3700km @ 1:30pm

Pit stop at a Taco Bell in Everett, WA. A little wiser, we avoided the spicy chicken crunchwrap combo that came with an extra soft taco.

My turn to drive again.

3847km @ 3:37pm

Damn you Kurt, you were supposed to write in this travelogue!

peach arch border crossing

Arrived at the Peace Arch border crossing 10 minutes ago and we’re nearly at the gate! Panicked at the thought of being interrogated by the customs officer. I’d have probably confessed to our 4 extra wine bottles plus the refugees hiding in our trunk. So made Kurt take the wheel.

But note to self: aim for a Saturday afternoon border crossing the next time we are States-bound.

3847km @ 3:43pm

Exchange with the Canadian customs officer.

CO: Where’s home?
Kurt: Vancouver!
CO: How long were you gone for?
Kurt: Uh, since last Friday.
CO: So what went on?
Kurt: (Pausing to figure out what the heck that was supposed to mean)
Kurt: Um, we visited some friends in San Francisco.
CO: Total value of goods bought?
Kurt: Not much …about $200 (which is sort of true…)
CO: Okay! So long! (waves us through)

Sigh…it’s good to be back in Canada.

Observation from Kurt: As soon as we crossed into BC, it started to rain.

3895km @ 4:36pm

Elisha parked safe and sound in our spot as we lug our California spoils and car-weary selves into the comfort of our little home.

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