Sunday, March 23, 2008

We are at home now, having been about three days without wireless, then spending the last two days at home trying to catch up with ourselves.

The last night of the trip, we were in a place called Peppertree RV Park. It was adjacent to a hotel and motel by the same name, and it was somewhere south of Seattle. We were really, really tired, and we remembered that finding an RV park along the I-5 in Washington can be a thankless task, so when we saw this place, we just pulled in. It turned out to be pretty disreputable. It's the only time I can think of when I've felt truly uneasy in a park. We watched "The Neverending Story" on DVD. It wasn't very good, was it? Anyway, we were watching a movie because when Robin tried to hook up the cable outside, it kept sparking, and he decided it wasn't worth the risk. One of the neighbours, a lady with a cigarette hanging from her mouth, a beer in her hand, and a noticeable lack of teeth, came out to check out the excitement.

So we locked the door and settled in. It was dinnertime when we arrived, and I think we were asleep by ten. At 4:30 in the morning, we woke up and pulled out of the park. By 6:00 a.m. we were in the middle of Seattle's rush hour traffic. Does it never slow down there?

We crossed the border not long after 9:00 a.m. The crossing was fun. Robin handed the border guard our passports and said "We're a couple of snowbirds heading home."

"Where have you been?"
"How long have you been gone?"
"Two and a half months."
"Did you bring anything back?"
"Yes, about $100 worth of stuff."
"Any alcohol or tobacco?"
(smiling) "Any illegals back there?"
"Okay, welcome home."

We got to the Tsawwassen ferry in time for the 10:15 sailing, but we had forgotten that it was a holiday (Good Friday), and we had to wait (first in line) for the next sailing - at 12:45. It's lovely to have a motor home in those situations. You make a pot of tea, pour, pull out a deck of cards, and quietly await sailing time - no problem.

As I mentioned, we had been several days without access to the internet - the last night, it wasn't even mentioned. The two nights before, we were supposed to have it, but we couldn't use it. I blogged in Word, and I'll copy here what I wrote:

March 19 - We are at the Medford Oaks RV Park and Cabins, located on Hwy. 140 in Eagle Point, Oregon. That's about fourteen miles east of Medford, I think. After driving in lots of wind today, we fueled up at Klamath Falls (about an hour east of here) and then came over a 5,105 foot summit this evening. There was snow blowing around, and ice. As we approached the summit, some of the stuff started sticking to the road, as well as to the windshield. Fortunately, Robin was driving, and we made it safely over. We set Maggie to the screen that tells us our elevation and speed, and what time it is - a very handy screen, that. I gave Robin elevation updates as we went along, and we both heaved a great sigh of relief when we finally got to the summit. Then I got to give him much happier updates as we came down the other side.

Below 5,000. Still snowing.
Below 4,900. Still snowing - and sleeting.

Somewhere along the way downhill, the snow and sleet turned to rain. Then the road was dry...

Below 1,600. That is the lowest we've been in a long time - since Mexico, actually. Robin had it in mind to get all the way to Sutherlin, Oregon tonight, but that's another three hours or so up the road, and there's no way. We arrived here about 7:15 p.m. We're parked right near the office (and showers and laundry), but I still can't get the wi-fi to work. As soon as I finish my soup, I'm going to take the laptop to the laundry room and wait for our clothes to come out of the dryers. Maybe I can get a connection from there*. From what I can see on my strolls back and forth to the laundry room in the dark, this is a beautiful place. There's a fountain a few feet from us - one of those modern, minimalist slabs. I'll try to take a picture in the morning, weather permitting. I can hear frogs croaking. They're not in the fountain. I think maybe there's a lake behind the trees. There are lots of trees.

You will note we couldn't get a connection at the park in Hawthorne, Nevada, either. That's where we stayed last night. We were supposed to have wi-fi, but we couldn't solve its mysteries. We were at Whiskey Flats, the same place we stayed the last time we took that road. Hawthorne is an odd little place. To its north is a large lake studded with state parks. To the east and southeast the desert is riddled with large burrows, each one topped by a signal light. It seems it's an ammunition dump. There's also an underwater warfare training facility. In the desert.

Tomorrow we'll try to get to the Washington border, unless it snows. If that happens, I'll suggest we stay and enjoy the glories of southern Oregon for a day or so longer. The weather people on NPR said the temperature will be in the 50s for most places, so as long as we get over whatever passes remain during the daytime, we should be fine.

*No, I couldn't get through from the laundry room, either - and it's right next door to the office. I'll send this whenever and from wherever I can.

Did I mention I'd rather be in San Carlos? (Not that the wi-fi was any better!)

Back to the present. Robin just looked out the window and said, "Damn. It's snowing." I'm afraid to look.

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