Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Oregon Part I: The Big Move

The original date of this post was supposed to be March 17, around the time that this event actually occurred in my life. Why did I postpone writing this? Laziness most of all.

What kind of sorry excuse is that after all? Well its legit so get off my back. There was a lot to talk about during this trip, about this trip, and I wanted to get it right so I never started writing it. Well, now is the time for me to get this shindig started. Why would I write it now? Well I leave to Oregon to see Dara tomorrow and I figure might as well catch up so I won't be behind. There is only one hitch...

I barely remember any of it (as expected). Thank goodness back when I decided to write this post I (at the very least) created a list of notes to go off of, and I will write the trip based on those notes. The notes are more like tags and I will embellish upon each one of them, in the fashion note - embellishment.

HOW TRIP STARTED - Well this is the sad part of the story. My friend Dara had just split with her husband Tom in what was a huge slewy mess. The story is really long and I won't go into details, but it culminated in my trip to Oregon. So her father and sister came to Abq from Oregon to help her move back (she decided to leave school because of the marital circumstances). They packed up a moving truck and headed off toward Oregon. The timing of this is really weird. This was the Thursday before my Spring Break. I had a homework assignment due the next day for a class (Friday). Anyways Dara had a major problem once her trip began. Her sister became sick (for her, it was too sick to travel) and had to be flown back to Oregon. They were already 2 hours outside the city, but were too far from any other city to continue on. Dara and her family stopped at a motel for the night and Dara was IMing (instant message) me all this information. Larry and I volunteered to pick her sister up and then I volunteered to fill the vacant spot so there could be another driver. That night I had to work till very late just to get the homework done (because no extension was given), then I got up super early and drove out to meet Dara's dad halfway.

4 CORNERS - This was the first stop of the trip. None of us had ever been, so we decided to stop off. It was exactly like I imagined, except really windy. Dirt everywhere, shacks with "gift shops," the typical tourist trap. Nothing really fancy though. They had each of the stage flags around the circle, so that was kinda gay.

MOAB - This was our resting place for the end of the first night. Moab, UT is like the hippie capital of the world. Hippies in their Jeep's or monster trucks, or bikes would venture here from all around just to be hippies. It really is kinda ironic that hippies would use the gas necessary for all that offroading. Maybe they are more hipster, or yuppie, but still I hate them the same. The geological structure of the area was pretty cool though. Which leads me into the next topic I noted...

SCENERY - There was some interesting scenery on this trip. It started in pitiful NM where the terrain is pretty barren and boring (a lot of rocks and dirt and really flat). Next we ventured into Utah with a tiny stint in CO. The terrain was different here as almost immediately outside the NM border it was way more green, and funnily enough all our energies returned to us. Utah also varied from gorgeous mountainous golden rocks to green plains and some other pretty mountains in between the gold and the green. Next was Idaho which is pretty much as the movies portray, very flat and boring, but green and thus nicer than NM (especially Abq). Finally we arrived in Oregon and the scenery here was very much like in NY (except with one huge mountain, and parts at high elevation). It brought a smile on my face as I remembered my love for home.

DRIVING - This was pretty much endless. Of course I can't complain because that was the reason of the trip, but still. At one point though I made it a game to see how good of gas mileage I could get. I had gone like 200 miles on a half a tank! Dara has a Civic which would explain the good economy, but still 200 miles on half a tank is insane for any car... especially a non-hybrid.

UHAUL - I declared this the theme. Every picture we took had a picture of the truck in it. That is an exaggeration, but I'm sure there were a lot with it. Everytime we filled up for gas I would see the same side, so until we got to Portland I had never seen the right side of the truck. That was a streak I wanted to make ever, but not all things are meant to be. I have this one picture that I will post eventually that is in Utah, gorgeous scenery, with the UHaul in front of us, the true landmark of America!

BOISE - From what I remember this is the littlest poop town ever. I think it had less to do here than Abq! It had the tiniest downtown area, but had one nonetheless. I don't remember anything else about this city. The midwest sucks (even though technically Idaho is the NorthWest).

OREGON - The final leg of the trip. We did the whole state in one day, which shouldn't be that bad, but with a UHaul is no easy feat. We drove along some river for a large part of the trip, we encountered snow, storms, and rain, and we had to deal with Chili's (Dara's dog) sadness. You could tell he was depressed from the cramped quarters of the car, but there was just so little to go we had to push on. Oh yea, there were tons of signs for the Oregon Trail. The very same trail that everyone has played on those old computers (the game dates to when floppy disks were actually floppy, which could be like 30-100 years ago (carbon dating sucks)). Me remembering that game makes me almost 30 years old! (Reminder: begin midlife crisis) Every time we passed one of those signs I would yell out something like "I got dysentery!" or "Here we hunt buffalo," or the best part "Dara has died of typhoid."

MT. HOOD - You could see this 11,000 ft (or more or less) behemoth from very far away. It was quite the sight to behold. It destroys NM mountains because this thing has that elevation from sea level, whereas we have mountains at that elevation that start from 5000ft (lame). The UHaul in front of Mt. Hood was the new token of the trip and I urged the US mint to make that image for the state's quarter. I don't know what they have now.

DARA'S PARENTS - They are great people. I pigged out on her mom's cooking because she was the teacher of Dara's amazing talents. I don't remember if I had anything specific to say about them. Her dad, Tom, is a machine. He would drive that UHaul all day and night. He would get up super early and go to bed after us. He would do everything. I think he even made julienne fries!

WEATHER - It rained all the time in Oregon. Not fun.

FOOD - THere are so many delicious food places in Portland and Oregon that I can't wait for my return. Gamma Damma's doughnuts, McMennamin's, other food places, Dara's house... the list is endless. I don't even know if I spelt those places correctly, but who cares. I encourage everyone to go to their favorite food place and eat there right now, because I am starving as I type this post.

Well apparently I remembered a lot more than I should have. Also of note, I exaggerated a lot less than normal so Hooray for me!!!! That's right, 4 exclamation marks for that one.

Stay Tuned for Oregon Part II: Back in the Habit.

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