Monday, June 30, 2008

The [sort of] end

After several hours on the computer trying to find a good bike route to Olympia, we determined that we were probably not going to do any better than the google maps directions which included 30 or more directions and took us entirely through suburban sprawl, mostly on roads which looked like multiple-lane roads with no shoulders. Ok, fine, we could have ridden that way anyway, but it just looked like it wasn't going to be any fun. So, when we found out that we could take a train and bus for around $5 each, we took the easy road again. Having reconceptualized this trip as a general traveling adventure rather than a bike-specific trip, it didn't really bum me out.

When we got to Olympia, we rode to my friend Ashley's house to meet up with Amina - a very close high school friend with whom I haven't been very close in the last several years - where we witnessed a cake-related crisis and its resolution. It was inspiring. After assorted hang-outs we ended up at an acoustic show which was described to us as "very Olympia". The music ranged from decent to really good, and the vibe reminded me of when I visited Oberlin College as a high school senior. Sean and I shared Amina's very small bed that night and his knees kept forcing me closer and closer to the wall.

The next morning we went with Amina, Ashley, and their friend Elenore to a Korean place to get tofu sandwiches and then walked around downtown Olympia, such as it is. While sitting around discussing our trip earlier, Sean and I had come to the conclusion that, as much as we felt ready to get back on the bikes, we were getting anxious to get to Portland, as we both had people there we really wanted to see. We talked about changing our route and biking as quickly and directly as we could to Portland, and then it occurred to me that my friend Matt, to whom I'd spoken on the phone earlier, just might be into driving up from Portland to pick us up. As it turned out, he was looking for an excuse to get out of the city for the day. He drove up to Olympia and we had Thai and went on a nature walk through some forest or something. It was actually pretty cool. He had recently been on a similar nature walk which included learning about edible plant life, so he dropped a bit of that sort of knowledge on us along the way. We spent a long time sitting on a beach of rocks and mud and trying to skip poorly-shaped rocks along the Puget Sound. When the sun started to go down we jumped in the car and headed to Portland.

Sean and I promised each other that we'd ride out to the coast and go camping, and I'm considering riding from SF to Sound and Fury Fest in Santa Barbara at the end of July, but I guess the trip is pretty much over, insofar as it has been defined by getting to Portland. I'll be here for the next couple of weeks, then the Bay area, then Sound and Fury, and then, unless something comes up giving me a reason to stay out west, Back to the east coast. Perhaps some reflections on it all later.

1 comment:

tracy said...

update, please