From here we were headed up to Olympia, hanging out with Jenny’s family and spending two nights at her close friend’s. We spent our morning letting the tent and sleeping gear dry off the condensation and dew in the sun and gradually packing the car up. Neither of us felt like bothering with cooking or cleaning for breakfast, so we decided to see if there was any good breakfast joints in town. We decided on The Landmark, for it’s view of the beach, and ate so much we wished for death for most of the rest of the day.
The main stop today was Cannon Beach, for two reasons. It was used in The Goonies, and because Jenny would break up with me if we didn’t go there. I like dinner getting made for me, so we stopped. I’m not sure I want to say it was raining, but it was wet out. It was really more like walking through a thick mass of water than drops falling from the sky due to gravity. That said, Cannon Beach was great and I kept Jenny from breaking up with me another day.
The bridge into Washington was completely engulfed in fog. You could see for a distance, and in that distance was only the road and more fog. It was completely surreal, and sort of felt like we were driving on a road in a computer model. There was nothing but the road and an even shade of grey in any direction you looked. No water, no sky, and an unchanging road disappearing in the distance. We were actually very fortunate in that we chose the week we did for our trip. The previous week had been struck with a heatwave, and there would have been only sun. I see sun in California. To hell with the sun, I want weather. It was while I was enjoying this weather that the blue flashing lights caught my eye and found a ticket for 124$USD in my hand.
I forget what time we got to Olympia, but when we got to Jenny’s house, everyone walked out as we pulled into the driveway. I should point out that her family is absolutely disgusting. They…hug each other….and say they love each other…and like being around one another. What the fuck kind of family does that shit? Honestly. I tell my family to suck eggs, like a goddamned patriotic American. After dinner we headed over to her friend, Jessi’s, house for the night. We were both dead tired from the drive, and went to bed pretty early- or tried to. We slept on the floor, above what sounded very similar to what you’d expect a Disney tunes karaoke party would sound like. In fact, that’s exactly what it was. Now, Jessi was basically a stranger to me, and let me tell you- when the stranger’s floor you’re trying to sleep on starts emanating a deep male voice as the lead for A Whole New World, you consider the fact that you may well not live through the night.
Fortunately the blood cleaned off nicely, and we had a nice late-night snack by the warmth of burning corpses.
We intended to head up to Seattle or Aberdeen, but we got lazy, realized we’d be driving through Aberdeen on the way up to the Hoh, and decided that I don’t give a damn about Seattle. Space needle? *masturbatory gesture* Instead, we spent the day casually driving around Olympia and acquiring camping supplies.
Jenny’s father has, and let us borrow, basically everything camping related in the world. Especially things suited for a rainforest, which my gear is sorely unprepared for. We grabbed a 4-person tent, since mine is technically a 1-person tent, and in the rain that’s not much space to be stuck in. We also took a few tarps, rope, kindling, cooking pan (forgot mine at home), his thicker sleeping pad and his joined together sleeping bags. I’ve got a sleeping bag, which I love, but we basically just unzip the thing and use it as a blanket when we camp.
That got me thinking that I’d really like to get the other half of my bag while it’s still easily found. Despite my sleeping bag still being available in stores, this other half business is not easy to figure out. Apparently they only make the other half in womens bags, which means they don’t quite line up perfectly. Fuck you, North Face for your assuming gays don’t camp, or making things line up between bags. We stuck with the borrowed bags.
After dinner with her family, her father cut up a crapton of firewood, while I rearranged my car and set up a clean tarp to hold it all. My car holds a lot of stuff, and I quite like it. I was driving around Washington with a half car full of firewood, tons of camping gear, food, etc, and a third person. Comfortably.
We went back to Jessi’s and watched Léon and following that, I passed out on the floor and they put on Total Recall and stayed up until 3 doing secretive girlie things, like hopscotch.
I wanted to make sure we got to the Hoh early, because if it happened to be dark and raining when I had to set up camp, I’d instead be spending the time stabbing the family in an already set up site. They also didn’t take reservations, and I wanted to have time to explore when we got there, unlike the previous campsites, so we woke up and got on the road at ass. It was raining, and this pleased me.
Aberdeen was also on the list of things Jenny would break up with me for not stopping at, but considering the entire town looked run down and awesome, I’d have stopped anyways. It basically felt like we were driving through an urban exploration wetdream, without the time to break into any buildings. We did take the time to stop by Kurdt Cobain’s first house and tried to find a few caches.
We then headed to the final “please don’t break up with me” spot, Ruby Beach, which was just outside the Hoh. We got there around 2 O’clock, and it was sunny as all hell out by now, so we spent a good while exploring and enjoying the beach. I’d never seen anything like this beach. Large pebbles in lieu of sand, and infininite piles of driftwood down the entire coast with large rocks jutting out of the water. Jenny managed to carefully climb around on some rocks with an epic homemade walking stick borrowed from her father as I hopped around them, both of us laughing at how much improved her knee has gotten since her surgery.
Once we headed out, it was a fairly short drive into the Hoh where we had a pretty good selection of open sites. We picked one that was fairly out in the open, but also a good distance from the neighboring sites and a super close walk to the river. We placed the tent under the one tree in the area, and toyed with the idea of covering it in a tarp, deciding against it, but leaving one under our table for quick access if necessary. Again, getting the stakes in was a bitch, and my hands were still sore from fighting with them at previous sites. Also, MORE BEES! There were a few on the table as we set things up, and buzzing in and out of the car and around us as we pulled stuff out of the car.
Later on we attended a program put on by a cute ranger chick who got super excited about small forest fauna, like banana slugs and flying squirrels and the Winter Wren. To be excited about the Winter Wren is to be excited about life!