Monday, July 19, 2010

May 7th-12th of Canada trip....the Long Journey Home....

5/7 - After a restless, cold night in the tent, I hopped in the car again and headed down the coast to Newport.  There, I stopped in at the Oregon Coast Aquarium.  Not very impressive.  The Seattle Aquarium is much better.  Entrance fee was only around $15 with free parking, but there were only a few exhibits.  Heading back over to the ocean, with it being a Saturday, I found garage sales!  Got some good deals on the few pieces of kitchen equipment  that I don't own.  And then down the ocean shore to the Sea Lion Caves, which were amazing!  I highly recommend them.  First, you can walk down the cliffside, and watch the sea lions bathing on the rocks below, and frolicking in the ocean  Then, if you follow the path the other direction, you take an elevator all the way down to sea level, where there is a huge cave where the sea lions live.  Hundreds of sea lions of all colors and sizes all in one cave.  A wonderful sight.  And then back to the ocean again, all the way down to Coos Bay, OR.  Now, the original plan was to travel down to San Francisco before cutting back over to home.  But, I got down to Coos Bay, and suddenly I knew how Forrest Gump felt at the end of his looooooong run, when he said, "I'm pretty tired....I think I'll go home now."  And that's what I did........

5/8 - 5/10 - Oregon to Denver, CO
May 8 was spent on the long drive across Oregon, then Wyoming, and finally down to Denver, CO, where I met up with an old friend.  Spent the night there, then got to spend the day with them the next day.  It just so happened to be Mother's Day, so we had an outdoor barbecued lunch, followed by rehearsal for the Denver Women's Chorus (an excellent group!), and then late dinner at Applebee's with karaoke.  The DWC ladies were amazing, and we had a great time hanging out.  I sang Whiskey Lullaby for karaoke, and the DWC women sang an endless, but wonderful, array of songs throughout the rest of the evening.  Afterwards, back to the house for another great night's sleep.  Got a chance to have a last breakfast with my friend before heading out again to Virginia.

The Rest of the Way Home
I considered staying one more day in CO (it's one of my favorite places!), but there was a chance they were getting snow that day, so figured I'd better head out.  The problem?  Storms that meant snow in CO, meant tornadoes in KS.  So, I drove all the way across KS through horrible rain and constant news on the radio of tornadoes about an hour away from where I was.  Fun times!  :-)  I am NOT a fan of tornadoes.......But, finally made it across KS, and stopped for the night at a truck stop.  And was suddenly freezing.....teeth chattering, whole body shaking freezing......took me several hours to realize that I had a fever, took some ibuprofen, slept the rest of the night.  Continued to run a fever off and on the whole way home....there are few things more miserable than running a fever while driving cross country.  You're tired, cold, achy all over, but you have to keep going!  Finally made it home and crashed for a day and a half before going back to work.

It was an amazing adventure.  I definitely want to go back and spend more time in Banff, go bobsledding at the Calgary Olympic Park, find some moose and bear.........and the call of the Oregon coast is constant for me.....

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