Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Over the river and through the woods....4.9.09

To grandmother's house we go! We left Bend, OR yesterday morning after getting a good night's sleep and sleeping in a little. Oregon was pretty...cute little towns with a 1 or 2 block main street, sporadic houses, & lots of nothing.

A whole lot of nothing on the road to Washington

As we approached the Columbia river, the mountains & hills became suddenly majestic as our path was carved between them. The fluffy white clouds really brought out the blue of the sky in contrast to the yellow green of the pastures all around us. It's been windy today, with gusts up to 30mph, pitching us all over the road as there are two fronts around us - one to the South and one to the East. There were lots of trains paralleling the highway and very few vehicles.

Crossing the Columbia river into Washington

We stopped for a quick geocache before leaving Oregon - making our State total (the amount of states we have found a geocache in) now 9!

We spent the late afternoon chatting with Michael’s grandma.

Rene, Alvina Ditton, & Michael

She is in an assisted living facility in Cheney, Wa. It was great chatting and catching up with her. She made arrangements for us to camp in the parking lot of the restaurant she worked for 15 years as a baker so we drove on down and made it for dinner. After dinner, we popped up the top on the van and began to get settled in for the evening. It was our first time getting it all set up so it took a little more time than it should have searching for the things we were looking for! While at Sue’s house, we made a curtain to go in the front windshield & side doors and couldn’t find it to save our lives! And it was cold out!!

And did I mention that the restaurant was right alongside both the main highway and a set of train tracks!! So as you can imagine, we listened to lots of noises the whole night. In the morning, Michael got up & went into the restaurant for some coffee and sat at the bar chatting with some 'good ol boys'. The guys were asking him the standard questions - 'you from around here?', 'you passing through?', 'you got family in town', 'you're ALVINA's grandson?!!' Oh please tell her I said hi. Then the next guy heard, and the next and he ended up talking to many at the restaurant! haha... But the funniest thing he told me was he overheard a guy go into the kitchen and talk to the owner of the restaurant, Mike. You must read this aloud in your most good-ol-boy accent... The guy said "Did ya see ya have a camper out there in the parking lot?", Mike said yeah. "Are they paying ya rent?" haha!! I have to admit, I laughed out loud when he told me that...and kept laughing when I would think about it.

So the first night of camping was a success - no problems other than it taking a little longer than it should have to setup. We were plenty warm, even though the temps dipped into the 40's overnight, and aside from all of the noise all night, we slept pretty comfortably.

We spent the entire day with Grandma on Thursday - chatting & looking at photo albums. She went down memory lane, taking us with her. It was a nice day. We went on a roadtrip to dinner, which was a bit of a hoot since we figured she would have a lot of difficulty getting into the van. She proved us wrong & climbed right in!

Grandma climbed right into the back of the van with no problems at all!

That evening we decided to get a hotel room as we feared it would rain on us and we needed a better night sleep so we checked into a hotel - right on the railroad tracks - and slept fine.

Canada tomorrow!!


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