Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The Long and Winding Road

June 21 - Day 37
North Bend, OR
Written By Viking

The long and winding road I am writing about is not the road that leads, as the Beatles claim, to your door. Unless your door is at the north end of the Pacific coast. In that event, we need a place to do laundry. The road I refer to is the classic Pacific Coast highway, or highway 1. Where we are now it has become highway 101, but its' coastal proximity remains unchanged.

These past two days have been pretty typical days, as far as this summer goes. Many miles covered, many awesome sights, many great people met, and many valuable life lessons learned. Pretty typical day for the summer. I am so happy.

We quietly left Santa Rosa on Monday morning, winding our way through the numerous vineyards in Sonoma County on our way out to the coast. The northern California coastline is not warm. It's usually very windy and mostly overcast. The past two days have been full warming layers for us, minus the dirty socks on our hands. The wind, cold, hills, and curves manage to stretch out our days quite a bit. It took us just over 11 hours yesterday, stops included, to cover about 200 miles. We ended the day on a very positive note, though, as we had some great conversations with some other travelers at our campground. I always display deference to bicyclists when I see them on the road, so it was great to chat with one who is riding from Los Angeles to Seattle and back. A bicycle trip was my original desire, but the scooter was available, and therefore cheaper. I just made Rev buy one.

We set out this morning in a thick fog. Very thick. It quickly accumulated on our scooters, goggles, and pants. There was no wind, though, so we were in good enough spirits. Pretty early on we passed through Redwood National Forest. We missed the Sequoia's in the south, so this was an adequate consolation prize. They were huge and impressive. We could fit both of our scooters inside a burned-out trunk.

There was that whole Pacific Ocean place, as well. Many times it couldn't be seen due to the fog, but when we could see it, it was pretty impressive. Very impressive. I was especially awed when I couldn't see it, but I could still hear it.

We crossed into Oregon in the early afternoon. A short time later we pulled onto a gravel turnout to... look at some shrubbery. I saw the monstrous pothole between the pavement and gravel in time to swerve around it. Rev did not. In my sideview mirror I watched Rev and Harriet go their separate ways and quickly went over to see if Harriet was okay. Kidding. I checked on Rev first, but he was already standing. Harriet was scratched up pretty bad on her right side, but she started as soon as Rev got her upright. We re-tightened all of the gear, and then Brady realized that he somehow didn't have a scratch on him. We've talked about it several times since then.. I thought I saw him in the air, and then on his back in the gravel, but he had no dirt on him and not even a bump. As Rev said, "It's as if Harriet landed on gravel and I landed on a mattress." So that was good, I guess. (understatement) I told Rev it would have been awful if I had to call an ambulance because Harriet was hurt. Kidding again. Praise the Lord for his protection, and thank you for your prayers. Even prayers for safety, I suppose.

What other news to report.. I had a swollen lip for the past two days. I'm not really sure why. I wish I could say it was a bite from some rare spider in a remote mission field, but yeah.. it's not. It's probably from a sunburn or something. I look mostly normal again, though, and can talk correctly.

I suppose I'll wrap this up with an explanation as to my naming of Sojourner. There are a few rules for naming a scooter you should be aware of. One, it should generally be a woman's name. (Unless it's named Wilberforce, because he was a great man.) Two, you cannot personally know anyone with the name that you choose. That's really the only two rules. You can add and remove rules as you see fit.
My first scooter was originally named Thelma, but was re-christened Wilberforce in lieu of the summer trip. My first thought was to rename this scooter Thelma, especially since I moved the battery case from Thelma to this one. However, in the same way that you can't give the same name to two pets, I couldn't call another scooter Thelma. Besides, their personalities are way too different. Is this weird yet?? Thelma was slow but steady, while this scooter has a penchant for 'speed', yet really struggles up hills. I prefer the first disposition, but after this scooter managed to cross the Sierra Nevada's, I knew she had earned a name. I toyed with one other name, but I then remembered that my elementary school secretary in 4th-6th grade had that name, so I had to disqualify it. Rules are rules, even if I made them.
As soon as I thought of Sojourner, though, I knew it was a match. We are even able to maintain the abolitionist theme with the reference to Sojourner Truth, the well-known American abolitionist born in the late eighteenth century.
A little while ago Rev and I listened to a sermon online about observing the Sabbath, and in Deuteronomy 5:13 it commanded even the sojourners within the city gates to observe the Sabbath. I suppose based on my reflecting on that message the name was in my thoughts. Sojourners were also listed in the groups of people who were threatened with oppression. In First Peter 2 Peter refers to the scattered Christians as sojourners and exiles. In verses 11-12 he offers this command, "Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul. Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation."
This has become a prayer for many of my little God-given adventures, so I thought Sojourner was a great name, serving as a reminder to our call for honorable conduct throughout this summer, as well as, Lord-willing, our days and years to follow.

Our bodies are beginning to wear down a bit. Our knees are recovering very slowly from some minor injuries, and a lot of little aches and pains are becoming more consistent. This obviously can affect our attitudes and patience with each other, so we continue to covet your prayers for us as we strive to finish the race and keep the faith ever at the forefront o our actions. Fortunately people continue to encourage us with their exuberant reactions to our trip, and we continue to be given opportunities of utterance. I like that word.

Time for bed. I don't have any possessions to suggest selling, but worry not, more will be coming.

1 comment:

  1. Even prayers for safety, hmm? Praising God for providing it, even if you weren't exactly asking!

    Loving the writing, brothers! This one really made me smile today. Thanks for sharing the trip and your thoughts with all of us back home...

    I think Sojourner was a great choice, btw.