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"It is the journey which makes up your life."

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

I'll be home from Christmas...

Just got home to Portland today. I had a quite hectic packing experience, planning on leaving early the next morning. I managed to actually leave two hours later than I had planned, after mom had stuffed my cooler with food and given me lots of huggs and money, and dad had checked my engine, replaced the cooling fluid, gotten my brothers to wash the car, and replaced two of my hubcaps. They love me.

Andrew and I went up the coast highway to San Francisco our first day. Once we got towards north LA it was spectacular. There was a big sailboat race off the coast in Malibu, with hundreds of graceful boats filling their colorful sails. We stopped frequently, standing on rocky bluffs, wandering down along tidepools for quick breaks from driving. We had a red sunset over the water, then cut inland to speed up our late drive to San Francisco.

Andrew's sisters share a very nice house in Oakland. They put us up in fold-out couches with high threadcount sheets, took us out to a nice but very delayed breadfast and then convinced us to stay one night more. I wanted to go hiking in the redwoods on the way back, so I agreed, and we embarked on a short hike through redwood regional park which, disappointingly, was full of oak trees, with a handful of small secondgrowth stands. It was good exercise, though.

We got a nice early start the next morning, and made good time up the I-5. Stopping to buy olives from a farm, goggle at Shasta Lake, and play frisbee in Ashland. There is a big pass on your way into Oregon. We came all the way up from San Francisco in brilliant sunshine, and coming over it, we saw a thick bank of grey clouds stretching away below us. We descended into it and haven't come out since. Welcome back to winter.

Yesterday, a hike up the salmon river canyon with Chris Black and his folks. We spent lots of time looking up plants in field guides and seeing how many people it took to reach around each huge old growth tree. I love that hike. I've been there every year since I moved here, and I will take you one day.