Friday, August 5, 2011

(Day 53) On conversations and "canyon" carving...

It was a wonderful last day in Oregon.  I spent the morning in downtown Salem at a Starbucks sidewalk cafe talking with Tom O'Connor from 9AM until noon (No Dwight, we did not have turkey bacon breakfast sandwiches!!!).

I am still processing that conversation.  So many ideas, so many threads to bring together and build on in ways that will contribute to the effectiveness of my work.  Thanks so much Tom!  I do hope that you get to come to the IPCA meeting in London and we have a chance to connect face to face again!  I so enjoyed my time with you!!

With Tom rushing off to another meeting I headed to Dallas Oregon to meet Dr. John Choppala who was introduced to me by a fellow Couchsurfer, Marce Williams.  Marce was unable to host me and she suggested that John offer to host me.  By the time John had contacted me I was comfortably situated with Rick and Joanne Scharer in the poolside cottage.  This morning I recieved another email from John asking if I would be free for coffee.  As it happened I would pass by Dallas, where his practice is located on my way to the Oregon Coast for one last ride... so I stopped in!

We had a great little visit talking about traveling and the people we have met along the way and what couchsurfing does in making the world a smaller place.  John has family in India and travels internationally quite regularly.  It was nice to meet you John and I trust that you will be blessed with more adventures in the future!

I had a moment of panic while in Dallas!  I went to go into a store and when I went to get my wallet out of my tank back it was no where to be found!  What a panic!!  Unbeknownst to me I had picked the wallet up inside of ball cap and it was there - under the ball cap on my seat!!! Crisis averted!!!

I also stopped at an audiologist office in Dallas and picked up some filters for my hearing aid - I had forgotten to pack them... duh!  I wasn't sure I would find them as in Amherst they have to order them in... low and behold... the office I stopped at had them in stock and I was good to go!!

Westward to the coast.  One last trip down the Oregon Coast.  Highway 18 was not near as fun as 22 going west... but all the same it was an awesome day.

Reaching Lincoln City I soon discovered that there was an onshore wind and an incoming tide!  This meant I got to see some amazing surf!  I stopped at a number of places for pictures and just to enjoy the view.

In Lincoln City there is a state park called "End of the Road" and it feels like it.  A beautiful beach with fine white sand that goes on for ever!  In case you are interested it looks as if there are a fair number of beautiful homes for sale - foreclosures and short sales...

Interesting fact: in Oregon all the Pacific Coast beaches are public.  I saw a picture in the State Capitol of the Governor that brought this law into effect - its a huge portrait of him wearing a suit standing with one foot in the forest and the other on the beach.

From "End of the Road" it was south to Siletz Bay and then Boiler Bay and Rocky Creek State Park.  From sand to cliffs and then back to sand again at Beverly Beach.  I kind of wish that I had stopped at the Agate Lighthouse - but it was such a chore... and its so warm when you stop...

Anyways, I continued on past South Beach and Lost Creek, stopping again at Seal Rock State Park and Cape Foul Weather, discovered in 1778 by Captain James Cook while on a voyage to the NW Pacific as part of the fur trade exploration.

At Waldport I stopped for a bite to eat just off the bridge at the Big Wheel Cafe (in business in the same location since 1949).  The burger was good.  The conversation with the daughter of the original owner was worth the price of the burger and then some.  She was so full of stories about the community and the changes that have taken place, I could have spent all day listening to her!  She reminded me of Molly from Molly's Reach...   she must drive slow though... she told me I was three hours from Salem... it was three and I needed to be back for supper at six... so I made tracks on Highway 30!


What an awesome road.  Just look at the twists and turns on this road!  It follows a rive valley and hugs the mountainside for about sixty miles!  The best sixty miles I have ridden this week!!  What a state!  Mountains and twisty roads to the east and the west!  I could enjoy living here - at least for the roads!!  Not so sure about the politics!!

All too soon I was back in Salem.  It only took two hours... and no, I wasn't speeding!!  I filled the bike with gas for the morning and then returned to Rick and Joanne's home where I did some laundry as Joanne cooked supper.  Rick and I had a bit of swim in the pool and then we all shared a wonderful dinner of turkey tenderloin as the "girls" wandered around the yard.  Eventually one of them needed to roost and thought Rick's head would be appropriate!  These hens are like dogs!!  I do hope you get eggs soon Joanne!!

Thanks so much Rick and Joanne.  The poolside guesthouse has been such a blessing - private space with wonderful hosts just across the lawn.  Thank you for the gift of your gracious hospitality, the conversations shared and the opportunity to take part in the building of global community!  I really do hope our paths cross again someday!  Peace and joy to you both on all the roads you travel!

Tomorrow it is eastward to Boise, ID where I will be staying with Couchsurfer Kent Johnson.  From there it will be south into Utah...  on the Sabbath Road...

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