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Posts tagged ‘travels’

The Left Side: Scenes from San Francisco to Portland

2017-07-25 22.05.45 copyWalking in San Francisco, my friend* was accosted by a gentleman who wanted to be her teddy bear. Talking up his teddy bear credentials, he walked in line with us for at least a block or two. She told him that her teddy bear at home wouldn’t like it much.

He then asked for money, “not from your wallets, but from your hearts.”

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San Francisco, seen from Coit Tower

At the Dry Creek General Store in Healdsburg, California, I unknowingly paid eight dollars for two chocolate caramels about as big as my pinkie. Then, I discovered the cost and shoved them into my mouth. Read more

Diagramming: Wild

Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed

I recently read the book — in bed and got snot all over my pillow.  Then I saw the movie and re-cried all over my face in the theater.  Wild is a really compelling story about screwing up and redemption; physically grueling walks through the wilderness; the joys of being alone and of reading; the crap way we treat our parents; and what happens when they die, young and suddenly.

“The trees were tall, but I was taller, standing above them on a steep mountain slope in northern California.”

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Our Nation’s Harbor: A Walking Adventure

Route: Alexandria, Virginia to National Harbor, Maryland and back again

If your goal is to see Old Town and National Harbor while walking for miles and miles and miles, here’s the day plan for you!

My sister and I started from Old Town Alexandria, which you can easily reach by Metro or Amtrak.  (If you are trying to park your car in Old Town on a weekend when the weather is nice: good luck.)

1) Start out with brunch in the morning in Old Town.  We ate at Flat Iron Steak and Saloon on King Street.  I recommend the Eggs Benedict, and don’t skip the home-style potatoes.  It’s a long, long journey, so be sure to eat a bunch of crap in advance of it.

2) Follow Washington St. until you come to the path leading across the Woodrow Wilson Bridge.  The ground is marked with a big circle and an arrow pointing to “MARYLAND.”  Go in this direction.   Read more

Route 17 Road Trip

Day One

USS North Carolina Battleship, with Wilmington, NC

USS North Carolina Battleship, Wilmington, NC

When we set out from Oriental, North Carolina Friday morning, the first real stop on Route 17 was the USS North Carolina Battleship, across the water from downtown Wilmington.

In the little park outside the battleship, a monument was dedicated to “sailors on eternal patrol.” It was here a goose

Hissing Goose

Hissing Goose (I’m not sure which one hissed)

hissed at me and we were warned not to feed the alligators.

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In the small town of Southport, we ate salads and happened upon a vegan bath and body shop. That’s where I got the lemongrass lotion, whipped from shea butter and other organic materials. I’ve been lathering it on my body ever since.

After dark, the Great Hotel Search commenced. Every person along the eastern seaboard was apparently stopping the night in Savannah. I believe we literally got the last room in the city. The pillows were bizarrely small, about half the size of regular pillows, but the bed had twice as many, so you really got the standard number of pillows.

In the room that night, we read what the internet had to offer about the crime in Savannah and were convinced we’d be murdered the minute we left the hotel. Whose stupid idea was it to come here?

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Fireworks

Oriental, North Carolina’s Fourth of July Fireworks were actually on Saturday the Seventh this year, to mark the ending of the town’s annual Croakerfest.  I’m still not entirely clear on why a festival exists to celebrate a fish, but I didn’t ponder it too much.  There were deep-fried Snickers to be eaten (never again), an oversized cardboard Mitt Romney, a parade where bystanders received both mini US flags and Mardi Gras beads, and, of course, the fireworks.
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