Friday, December 30, 2016

Another Day Another Long Trip

I took just one cat to the north coast clinic today.  I was going to take one of mine along, Mops, but then decided against it, since he really needs full mouth extractions like his sister Buffy does.

I was in bed by 8:00 but woke up at 3:00, a bit early.   But I couldn't get back to sleep.   I got involved playing with the kittens instead of leaving on time.   Jamaica suddenly lets me pet her.  So why  would I want to leave cuddly little kittens behind and venture out into the cold icky early morning?  I didn't!

But off I went and got there in plenty of time to check in Klaus, a barn cat from Kings Valley, for his dental.   I didn't even get a photo of Klaus.  After leaving him, I headed off with a couple egg and cheese burritos to the south jetty parking lot where I spend a lot of time.   I was going to take a nap.

However, I got involved reading Grapes of Wrath after I finished my burritos.  I dug it out from under the passenger seat.  I found it at a thrift store and keep losing the book amidst stuff that accumulates under the car seats.  I clean out the stuff and put the book somewhere, forget it, then can't find it, then find it again and think how did that get here.  I love Steinbeck's books, but Grapes of Wrath has to be one of his greatest.  I finally put it down, found a napkin to use for a bookmark and stuffed it in the side pocket of the passenger door.

I went and climbed up along the jetty trail, east of the viewing tower and took photos of the very wild surf.  The waves crashed onto the jetty in front of me.  Sometimes I'd have to turn my camera away to avoid it getting wet from surf breaking over the jetty.

The dull constant roar rippled in booms and crescendos, tinkles and crashes and entranced me. The constant multi directional movements of the water made me want to be inside it and the smells, the moisture, the salt, the hint of birds and other things alive or dead was in it too.  Mountains formed and vanished and were swallowed. The landscape changed every moment.  It's a wonder I walked out on it after an hour.

And to what?  My car?  Then various auto parts stores, intent on finding chains so I can get around next week if things ice over.   I discovered eventually my car will not take chains.  The clearance isn't such that it can.

  I wandered finally into Fred Meyer.  I saw half price tags, I thought, on bird feeders.  I wanted another cheap hummingbird sit down feeder, so I can swap one for the other that my friend gave me, on mornings when the liquid has frozen solid.

The tag beneath the cheap little metal feeders said $7.99.  I thought with the half price coupon, clutched in one hand now, this was a deal for me.  I get to the checkout and it rings up $14.99 not $7.99.  Say what?

I'd not read the tear off coupon with glasses. The clerk points out it's Buy one, get the second at 1/2 price.  Of course the 1/2 Price is in huge letters, and the rest in tiny letters.  I take the feeder back, and despite the price it rang up for, although I then told the clerk I wasn't buying it, I put it right where I found it, over the tag that says $7.99.   Probably another feeder is that price.  I was muttering "I won't pay $15 for a cheap piece of crap."  And it was a cheap piece of crap and certainly not worth $15.   It would have been worth a quarter that, however.

I walked off again muttering, this time that I'd forgotten how expensive that area is and that I won't forget again.  I was tired out by then, talking to myself, wishing I was home in bed.  But I wasn't home in bed.  I picked up Klaus and decided to take a nap rather than hit Portland right at rush hour.  I told Klaus why would I sit in rush hour when I can nap right here right now and skip that baloney of rush hour.  So I did take a short little nap.  Not a long nap just enough to brighten me up some.

Then it was time for the trudge home in the car, along through the lowlands south some, then the cut to the east and up and up more into the coast range, cursing behind lugging trailers that can't make the climb at any speed and line up the cars behind, like a snake, curving and slithering.

Caught behind this truck pulling a utility trailer that sometimes speeds up to about 70, then slows to a near crawl, while the trailer wobbles behind this way and that, my mind wanders off.  I think what would I do if I was coming home and the big old earthquake they say will come anytime actually hits.  Ok, I think, well,  I'd go back to the coast, if I was still close enough, after the after shocks go away, if a giant doug fir doesn't loosen in the quake and fall and knock my lights out for good.   I'd see if anything is left after the quakes and the tsunami, get some news maybe, of what's out and what isn't, scrounge some supplies, or maybe just head home, if I was between the coast and the city, walking.  I always have my tent and sleeping bag and wool sweater and socks, my little stove, I'd take all that and my food and water and I'd have to build some cart to pull Klaus home and how many weeks might it take me and what bridges would be out and guess I'd have to build rafts to cross rivers if the bridges were out.   Then the truck with its wobbling trailer suddenly speeds back up and my mind is back on the road and what the fuck is wrong with the fucker ahead of me in that damn truck.

Then the crest and that's it, down down we go, but nope, up again, and again, then down, and finally the long down, the flatlands, a bit of climb and here we are, the outskirts of the big city, lights strung out, cars zipping and whining by, windows dark and empty.    Only the lights now flaring by lanes over and the blowing heater air turning my eyes dry and scorched feeling.

Finally the car is pointed south and an hour only I know I hope will be home and my bed and all that warmth and familiarity.  Oh how my leg hurts, oh how my shoulders twitch and my face is bunched up straining and one hand stings if I clutch the wheel too tight.

Now here I am at home, writing this with the bed just three feet from me.  There it is.   But here I am.  Not anymore though.  I'm nodding off, my chin wants to hit my chest.  Everything looks like a bed.

Night night.


  1. Sleep well.
    Loved your surf images.
    There is something magical about water, moving or still.

  2. Half smiling. Really well written and wow, the sea photos are great.

  3. Great post! What a fabulous view. I'm glad you get to enjoy that for all your hard work.