Day 3. Enormous Flora and angry Fauna
Today felt like vacation. We slept in, Coco only woke us up twice in the middle of the night to be let out. I moseyed on over to the fence line to check out the Elk that hang out in the back meadow. They were all kinds of elegant just sitting around chewing and head butting each other. I’m pretty sure the two males were just play fighting. Or they really weren’t feeling the violence today because they were just going through the motions. Who knew Elk could get the Mondays?
I managed my first RV shower. Fun fact, the water heater only holds 6 gallons of water and takes 30 min to heat up. I have learned the importance of turning the water off during any lathering process. My head actually hits the ceiling so it made hair washing a unique and bendy challenge. But I got clean and that was the only goal so therefore it was a success.
At some point, I realized that we never really stopped to get groceries in the last two days and the food we did bring is running low. I consider this a badge of honor. Normally I would prepare more food than a football team could consume in a week. Bacon, Hawaiian rolls and some protein bars make for a very filling breakfast.
We tried to find a grocery store in the Town of Orick (human population 650, Cow populations 1000) to stock up on some supplies. We ended up with Oreo’s, french toast sticks, cheese and firewood. It was more of a general store / cess pool of questionable breeding practices. I decided to forgo their offerings of ground meat products. You would need to prove to me it was cow and not ground tourist.
We headed over to Stone Lagoon Beach and let the idiots frolic in the sand and surf. It was delightful and remarkable that we were alone on most of that beach. It is really lovely to travel on the off season. You get to see so many things and share that moment with your loved one without the 9 members of the Clampett family swilling beer and getting into domestic disputes while spoiling your view. It’s weird coming from such a tourist driven state that fills every beach and beach town to the brim with t-shirt shops and sketchy tattoo parlors, to see miles and miles of breath taking coast line that is populated by a herd of very smug milk cows.
We cut the beach trip short after Mango got too excited and his hind legs kinda gave out a little. He’s pushing 13 and we think he has some nerve damage so this isn’t completely unexpected. I had to carry his fat ass all the way back to the RV. He seemed to enjoy that portion of the walk almost as much.
We decided to take the Newton B. Drury Scenic Parkway through the Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park. We kept expecting Little Foot to step out from behind a tree and ask if we have seen the Star Leaf. The Redwoods could only be described as august. I was only slightly disappointed to not find any Ewok tree houses in the canopy. We did get to see the Big Tree and it was. It seems it isn’t actually the largest nor the oldest tree in the park. It’s just the only one that they will tell you the location of. It makes me sad that my fellow humans are such shit balls that the parks have to keep these beautiful giants a secret to keep them safe. How can anyone look at one of these behemoths and do anything but stare in awe and silent wonder at their eminence? This tree is estimated to be over 1500 years old it has endured more than we can conceive and some asshat will probably try an kill it some day.
On our drive back we stopped at a turn off that is a well know Elk hangout. When we stopped the first time, there were maybe 15 just hanging out at the far edge of the field eating grass and waiting to be photographed. This time there were probably 50 and they were almost standing in the parking lot. I guess when your smallest female is over 500 lbs you don’t have a lot to fear. They mostly looked annoyed that we were only using camera phones to document their splendor. I felt the need to apologize and explain that the RV was a rental and we are in fact poor. They weren’t impressed.
We came back to the camp site early so we could relax before we spend much of tomorrow driving up to Oregon. In my infinite wisdom I decided to build a camp fire. I was convinced this was going to be some next level romantic shit. Turns out.. that even with a fire starter mini log and some firewood, you really only get a single smoldering flame and a lot of smoke. It was easily the saddest camp fire in the history of camp fires. The Bear was a good sport and lovingly froze his ass off to humor me while I made hot chocolate and then dinner. I took pity on him when his lips started to turn blue and brought him his winter coat to replace the insufficient hoodie he had on. We gave up once it got dark, so I dumped a gallon of water on the fire and retreated inside admitting defeat against the frosty air.
I am considering a second attempt at sleeping in the bigger bed above the driver’s seat. Now that we have the heater fixed I’m not nearly as likely to freeze to death. The only reason for the change is that any time the bear gets up to take out the dogs or do anything I have to pull myself into a tight fetal position to avoid having him drop kick my legs on his way out of bed. This is not an ideal way to wake up in the middle of the night. The only other drawback about this move, other than the loss of my in bed human powered heating system, is that in order for me to make one of my many midnight bathroom trips, I would need to climb down onto a bench and then to the floor and back to the bathroom. I am not well coordinated in the middle of the day fully awake, caffeinated and alert. I am down right bumbling when I am half asleep. I also get the added obstacle of sleeping dogs laying in the middle of the walk way. I will let you know how it goes tomorrow if my next post is written from the ER.