Scattered toward every wind …


Day 5: Rosalyn, WA to Seattle, WA
Wednesday, 6 January, 2010, 8:49 pm
Filed under: photography, Travel

the last day … it had been a cold night … we woke up to cold, crisp, mountain air … my hot morning breath met the cool air and became visible. the trees all around shrouded us from any warmth the sun may have been giving off. i slowly slipped out of my sleeping bag and jeff and i emerged from the tent.

the evergreen state

the evergreen state

we plugged in the water for coffee, grabbed some food out of the back and proceeded to get changed and break down camp. as we were doing all of this, the camp host came over and we attempted to square away the payment for our site … he promptly informed us that we had set up camp on a double site, which is twice the cost of a single site. it sounded as if he wasn’t going to cut us a break … we had pulled in late, it was pitch black, it looked as if the site we were on was a regular single site … we didn’t end up having to explain this all to him, as he gave us a break and only charged us for a single site, lucky for us (i don’t think we had enough cash between the two of us). the camp host was, at first surly and gruff, and really seemed to think he had done us a huge favor by not charging us the $30 … i don’t know, i really don’t think there was anyone else staying on the grounds that night to really make our “offense” a problem. he just had that kind of “i have power over you” attitude. after collecting our $15, he hung around and tried to talk to us for a bit. he noticed the MD tags on my car and asked about what we were doing out in WA. after explaining our story, the camp host made some bad jokes, once again reminded us of the favor he had done us, and left us to pack the car for the last leg of the journey.

to be back in WA was confusing … i was all at once excited and depressed. life on the road had been good to me. being somewhere new every day, the rush of seeing new, wondrous things … the magic of the mountain west had me firmly in its grip. the majesty of her mountains and towering pines, the rugged wilderness, some of it still seemingly untouched, had left me in a dreamy state. the thought of finally settling somewhere, even though that place was a place i loved, was depressing … i had found contentment in motion … maybe it was really fear. fear of real life being at hand … of having to face the uncertainty of life without a job and little direction in a place that was becoming home, but still unfamiliar. i didn’t feel ready at all to start again. this disconcerting feeling was not what i expected when we had embarked. my realization: the excitement that built up in me each day of the journey seemed to stem not from being closer to Seattle with each mile traveled, but from movement in general. the thought of stopping somewhere killed me … even though the movement was counterfeit, i wanted so badly for it to be real, to be able to find some countervailing measure to fight back against the entropy and atrophy. for the time being, i was being sustained by the beauty of the captivating landscape of WA. it was enough of a distraction … maybe distraction isn’t the right word. it acted almost as a source of hope and inspiration. i just seem to be terrible at channeling said hope and inspiration into anything at all …

Double Site

Double Site

we pulled out of the campground having decided to take the backroads into Seattle to allow ourselves to see more of the Cascades. this proved to be both beautiful and frustrating … a lot of roadwork slowed us down in many places along the way, but also provided Jeff and I with some time to think about what to do once we entered Seattle. it also allowed us to shoot pictures like this one …

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These roads are very dangerous ...

the roads took us through forests of a million evergreens, all of them towering over the road below …

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out the passenger side window ...

the day was perfect. sunshine hit the mountainsides. the trees exploded with bright green and black shadows, moving upwards, the green of the trees dramatically changed into the brilliant blue of the late summer sky. the further west we moved, the more into the sky the mountains sunk their teeth. we entered the kitschy bavarian mountain town of Leavenworth …

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Leavenworth

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Mountains around Leavenworth ...

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Bakery

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it means, "The Copy Shop" for those of you who don't "sprechen sie Deutsch"

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...

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...

driving out of Leavenworth, the road took us alongside a mountain river. it was white with rapid water and loud as the tides. as the mountains rose up around it, its sound was sent skyward, thrown back and forth between the mountainfaces, before being released into the open air.

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...

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...

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...

the roads snaked through evergreens and the mountains caused the car rise and fall like like a boat on rough waters. all along the way, the river was at our side, its rushing waters carving through earth, guiding us down the mountains in the direction of home … we lost elevation quickly as we went from Leavenworth to the small mountain town of Gold Bar, though the mountains still loomed large on all sides …

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down the mountain ...

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...

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Tunnel

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one of the last mountain vistas before Seattle ...

one of the things i love about Seattle is how close the mountains are. it had taken us longer because of the route we decided to take, but really, it is less than an hour’s drive to the Cascades from Seattle proper. as quickly as we had left the stately peaks of the Cascades, we were in the midst of the suburban sprawl of Seattle and not long after that, the buildings of downtown Seattle joined the skyline.

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Seattle!!!approaching the exit ...

once we were in Seattle, we stopped in at what once was, and was now once again, my home in queen anne. we cleaned up, i unpacked my stuff from the car, and jeff and i discussed our next move. we drove around a bit, stopping at Kerry Park for some quintessential Seattle skyline pictures, and visited other green spaces around Queen Anne before heading down into Fremont for some food. After a tasty meal of burgers at Blue Moon Burgers, i drove Jeff around Fremont …

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Aurora Bridge ... the underside

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"You gotta pay the troll toll ..."

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" ... if you want this baby boy's hole, you gotta pay the troll toll ..."

headed to Gasworks Park after our lunch and visit with the troll … gave Jeff a chance to capture a few more pictures …

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Gasworks

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Plane taking off from Lake Union ...

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Boats!!!

we drank in the city from Gasworks park and headed up to one of my favorite coffeeshops in Seattle … even the world … Zoka, in Green Lake.

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Zoka

we enjoyed our lattes and basked in the warm rays of the Seattle sun, just enjoying the mere act of stillness after the frenetic motion of the incredible journey …

seeing that it took me just 4 days or so to cross the country, and nearly 6 months to finally finish writing about it (i don’t think i’ve really finished), perhaps i will revisit the trip in the next few weeks … hopefully reflecting more on the thoughts and feelings that rose up in me along the way and that have arisen in me in my months of permanent living in Seattle.

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