Souls Tumble South

Travel Info 08/10/2012:  Seattle, WA – Astoria, OR

Travel Info 09/10/2012: Astoria, OR – Newport, OR

Travel Info 10/10/2012:  Newport, OR – Port Orford, OR

Travel Info 11/10/2012:  Port Orford, OR – Crescent City, CA

Travel Info 12/10/2012:  Crescent City, CA – Eureka, CA

Yesterday we visited the Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park – the first of the Redwood State Parks that Pookaverse will visit and one of a handful of ‘old-growth’ Redwood Groves under State and National Guardianship as well as a World UNESCO site. Pookaverse will be providing a separate post on California’s Redwood Parks when the tour is complete. In the meantime, here is a catch-up bringing the journey up to date.

So that’s where all that racket was coming from last night? One of the many groups of California Sealions having a post-roar snooze on a man-made pontoon, Yaquina Bay, Newport, OR

Down the Pacific highway US Route 101 through the coastal towns and cities of the state of Oregon. Arriving, yesterday lunchtime in Crescent City, Northern California and this afternoon in Eureka, CA. Weather has been uncharacteristically cloudy with temperatures down to 110C.

The first time that a cloudy start has not led to a sunny day since leaving Milwaukee, WA. It has stayed coldl and cloudy with mist surrounding the pine tops of the mountain ranges sandwiching the 101 with the sea.We later learnt that this is part of the unique micro-climate of this area. Warm air from inland collides with cooler air from the sea forming mist.

This mist then forms droplets on the tree leaves and plants and has led to scientific speculation that this 100 inches per year precipitation has led to the spectacular growth and longevity of the Sequoia sempervirens. That’s Giant Redwoods to you and me. And there we go being selfish about the weather.There is a whole channel dedicated to Weather out here that repeats itself.

The view South…Cape Kiwanda State Park… near Pacific City, OR

Yaquina Bay Bridge…about teatime, our time…midnight…your time….Newport, OR

After a record period of high temperatures in some parts of the East and drought in some parts of Midwest, the storms are coming from the West and ‘funelling’ up from San Francisco. Funneling being the operative word. A confluence of strong winds, monsoon rain and tornadoes heading for Missouri.  Did Pookaverse just use the ‘T’ word? Just like the ‘real news’.  It’s all the apocalyptic. With perfect teeth and sweeping hand gestures – enough to whip up a storm before the ‘Skunk with the Mayonnaise jar on it’s head’ story. Boston…..BOSTON???

By the way, the road signs say San Francisco 308 miles. That’s San Francisco on the West coast of America. Pookaverse is into constant pinching of its human parts just to believe that sign really says what it does and that the unbelievable is true?!?! Not altogether so.Will you think us ungrateful if we were to say that a weariness has now entered into the equation? Weariness. Isolation. Dislocation. Questions. Like. “Why are we doing this?”  “What is this for?” Perhaps disillusionment with our ‘holiday’. More of that in a minute.

This morning on our sofa at the Lighthouse Inn after the day before with another Soup from Safeway in Crescent City. In another strip mall in another part of the town that looks like the previous part of the town. Home-made sandwiches prepped in the room.  Two hooms, one poorly, sat down and talked about the ‘lived reality’.  Later two hooms sat down this evening (seems a thousand centuries ago) in the Lost Coast Bar in Eureka, CA and realised the following. apart from the fact that when an American says ‘Micro-brewery’ they really mean ‘Real Ale’.

A few comfortable square feet of Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area just after Coos Bay, OR

That this is not a holiday. Not even close. It is close to a ‘Business Trip’.  Like a trip from Edinburgh to Plymouth.  Stops in hotels, motels, gas stations and supermarkets. Left and right. Wanting for nothing in the material sense. Your constant companions: the receptionist;  the checkout clerk; the waitress or waiter; the volunteer, of which there are many, in the local visitor centre; a National Park Ranger in one of the excellent National Park Visitor Centers; the taxi-cab driver. The list is exhaustive. Can you be exhausted by beauty?

As you can see, Pookaverse has made many new friends out here. Weariness you ask? We understand your indignation. Let us clarify.

It is constant hunter-gathering for information, accommodation, food, gas and a view from here to there.  As Maslow described it in his hierarchy of needs. Pookaverse yo-yo’s between the ‘Physiological’ and ‘Self-Actualisation’. With not many stops between floors.

I told you that you may think us ungrateful. We accept condemnation. At least we  can be real with you. and with ourselves. We are travelling. We are not on holiday.

Sunset at Port Orford, OR

Hold on in there if you feel lost at this point. We are standing next to you. More foul-mouthed fun is due. Just not today. Or tomorrow. Maybe the day after. We’ll see.



5 Responses to “Souls Tumble South”

  1. Thompson Says:

    You sound knackered rather than ungrateful. What you are describing is an honest account of what almost all of us feel at times on a long trip. Hope it passes soon.

  2. jose Says:

    Yes I agree, tiredness must be in the equation, rest awhile, save
    your strength for building houses in Costa Rica, Bet visited it a few
    years back and says lovely country but watch out for the bananas
    wrapped in blue bags wizzing along the rails..

  3. Terri and Andrew Says:

    Hi Ali and Rohan,
    Hang in there we know life is like this when you are constantly on the road and living out of a suitcase. Don’t be hard on yourselves, this way of life doesn’t feel real.But, it is a journey which you are both discovering the highs and lows of this big vast world which most people who live there don’t even get to see!! I know this from my time in Australia travelling for a year and it was good to stop in one place for a while and break it up with staying with friends, however your friends are right beside you via this wonderful site. We are loving sharing your honest and at times funny comments on life. Hey, ‘Lets go to San Francisco…!!!!’ You can’t hear Andrew singing!!
    We have been collecting the leaves from our garden to make mulch and Andrew has been repairing the washing machine.
    Yesterday we had an interesting afternoon at the York races, we didn’t win! but we where guests of Andrew’s former boss when he was farming who has set up a charity called Changing faces. we where collecting with buckets after the races finished….The sites you see on an cold day!! Ladies of all shapes and sizes in very high heels and some very interesting outfits…!!
    Take care , rest well , all our love as always,
    Terri and Andrew xxxx

  4. Martin Says:

    Hi pookaverse
    I’ve also experienced this jaded feeling while travelling, you need to break the cycle of travelling, looking for somewhere to say, seeing another amazing site etc by picking somewhere and stopping for a few days to chill. I’d recommend Ko Tau in Thailand but I’m thinking that wouldn’t be too helpful.
    Alternatively seek out the ‘Great Ball of String’ as I hear it has rejuvenating powers …
    Loving the blog, take care

  5. Anne Says:

    I do understand, and I ‘d like to be as supportive as all your other friends (you are taking on a lot – some of it won’t be fun – some of it will make you think – some of it will make you sad etc etc etc) BUT …… the pictures are amazing!!!! The fantastic beauty in the structure of that bridge – all the human endeavour that went in to building it!! The blue in the skies!!! Stick your arms out wide – take in a great, deep, breath of fresh air, feel the wind in your face, smile (broadly) – and remember that it is great to be alive – even if it is only to have seen a blue sky (and the clouds). Works for me every time!!!! AND – you are (hopefully) about to go and hug a great big tree!!! (Yes I do expect to see a picture of this).

    I hate to get all “strictly” / “X factor” on you – but you are on a “journey” – all that soul searching / feeling a bit empty etc is (hopefully) going to get you somewhere – so, basically – focus on that glitter ball at the end!!!

    The “reality check” back here – on my ninth day in a row of working – was on call over the weekend and had a number of calls in the night which means I have been a wee smidge tired and grumpy ever since. Found out the reason I couldn’t get broadband was because I switched off something on my computer (nobody told me!!!) – so that proves I am a total numpty!!! Lost at squash (on account of being so tired) etc etc etc.

    The strictly night is planned for Saturday with the girls (we would have let you come as well Rohan if you were here!!) – basically we are going out for an Indian and at some stage may get round to watching the dancing. Great British Bake Off final is tonight (so that will be good). Everything in place for baking my Halloween cake for the office (lots of pictures of Halloween celebrations please).

    Got to go – so will pop back in a couple of days to see where your “journey” has taken you next and how your inner psyche is doing.

    And as Brucie would say …… “Keep Dancing”!!

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