Travel Notes 3/28/02

Spending the Night
I did not stay at Seaside tonight. It is spring break for all the public school students in Oregon. I had forgotten this fact until I crossed the state line. When I got to Seaside, it was packed with high school students. I know I did not want to put up with any of that. I decided that I wanted to go straight to Portland.

When I got to Portland I had to find someplace to stay. My hotel reservation did not start until Friday night. I decided to get a room at the Kennedy School. When I lived in Portland, I always took my out of town guests to the Kennedy School. Everyone thought it was a funky place. It is too far from downtown for me to stay there my whole trip, but one night would be cool.

There is something about the Kennedy School that really fits in well with Portland. I am not sure something like this world work in another city. The place was just brimming with life when I got there. I wonder what draws all these people there. It fits the personality of this town.

Lewis and Clark
I took a picture of the Lewis and Clark Statue before I left Seaside. My company’s CTO is a big Lewis and Clark fan. He quotes them all the time and compares TiVo to the expedition. I am going to send him a copy of the picture. I know I am brown-nosing a little bit. When I moved to Portland I thought about Lewis and Clark a lot. I thought about how they were looking for the Northwest Passage, but there was no such thing.

Driving 101 North
US 101 North is really curvy most way from when you enter Humboldt County all the way to Seaside, Oregon. Most of that way it is one lane each direction. It is a pretty entertaining drive at first. After about 10 hours, you just want it to end. It is more challenging then just flying on the interstate. It is also more maddening in the end. I was on the verge of going batty by the time I got to Portland. The last 75 miles almost did me in.

I have decoded the meaning of the speed signs going into curves. Under the sign showing you the shape of the curve it will have a suggested speed. You have to pay attention to these signs, but they are not really accurate. “45 MPH” means you can stay at the same speed, but just pay attention. “40 MPH” means you have to take your foot off the accelerator when you go thought the curve. “35 MPH” means you have to tap the break before going into the curve. “30 MPH” means you better slow the hell down or you are going off the road.

I tried to speed, without going too fast. It is a fine art. You want to speed to save time, but go slow enough that cops will not want to break their speed traps to stop you. It is the old ten miles over the limit rule. There are some speed trap towns on 101. The speed will drop from 65 to 55, 45, 35, all the way to 25 within a mile or two. You have to careful in these towns. There have to be a couple of cops that pay their salary on speeding tickets in these towns.

Part of this trip was a test to see if I should drive cross-country. My car passed its part of the test. It still has enough power. The engine seemed fine and the temp gauge did not move much. It handled okay, but I am not objective about handling when I am driving. It got great gas mileage. With 84000 miles, it still rides pretty well.

I am not sure I did as well on my part of this test. I did not have a problem with my body cramping or getting sore. I did have a problem with the using restrooms. I stopped about every two hours to use the restroom. Losing 15 minutes every two hours really adds up. It does not take long before that ends up to slowing me down a couple of hours. How would this work with someone else in the car?

Odd Travel Facts
I have entered Oregon seven times on the ground. Twice from the south, five times from the north. I have also entered twice from the air.

Random Roads
  • I hit the road at 7:30 this morning
  • I am not sure if I will get to see Amber or not.
  • The chicken and Sausage Gumbo at the Kennedy School was great.
  • Portland is a place my mind lingers.
  • My sister Kathy would have like the drive from San Jose to Portland. I miss traveling with her.
  • I miss the dress wearing, hippy woman of Portland.
  • So far this trip has done its job.
  • I drank 3 pints and a small pitcher of beer tonight.
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