Day 13; Newport to Bandon, Oregon.
Today began cloudier, foggier, and clammier than ever! Mr. sun, we do miss you! Wiped the condensation off the bike and got started, early today. (Relatively speaking, as it was 9;45 a.m.)
Parts of 101 creep inland and the ocean is a memory. However, the forests are a delight. Today's highlight was Devil's Churn. Which leads to the question; If God created it all, and some parts look better and more interesting than others, then why does the devil get the credit? The Little Woman explained that the terms are probably from hapless fishermen who got caught in the melee. Makes sense. That would feel rather satanic, crashing into the rocks on the pounding surf.
Devil's Churn is a narrow chasm where the water rushes in and shoots upward, a constantly changing phenomenon due to changing tides and winds. It's one place where the government has failed to erect fences to keep us safe. So one can hike to the bottom and clamber over the rocks and get great pictures.Or get swept out to sea, depending on their position. It is amazing the short distance from a stable rock to the caldron of boiling surf.
We resumed the southern journey and stopped in Florence. It boasts and old town with shops and restaurants jostling one another along a river. We had lunch (very mediocre!)with a bonus; the sun! Yes, it crept out and warmed our faces during lunch, on a patio overlooking the river. The view contained a bonus as well, a huge crane dredging the bottom.
The Little Woman shopped and I read a bit and struck up conversations with the locals. One was the town drunk. He talked about how little he drinks and then passes out, stating that it was 'very scary.' Then he pedaled around town a bit (truly amazing- try doing THAT while drunk!) and returned to sit and watch passerby. Sherri came back and we went for a stroll. Returning, a cop was writing a ticket to the drunk. Afterwards I asked him what he wrote the ticket for. Apparently he left his tent somewhere and the cops had roused him. He failed to pick it up, so they cited him, with a court appearance. He lamented that he liked Florence, but usually he stayed in a town until a 'failure to appear', then took off. I couldn't help but feel sorry for the guy. He certainly was no harm. Probably bad for business.
Off we went, stopping regularly, as the viewpoints forbid driving by blindly. Now the view is blocked by huge sand dunes- miles of them.
We stopped a bit early at Bandon, as I was fighting sleep. Worse on a bike than in a car. Bandon appears to be more fishing village than tourist town, but old town has the shops that attract passerby. This place has few people, and closed shops intersperse with the open ones. We stopped at a restaurant for our worst meal yet, more due to bad service than food.
I really blew it because we walked into the place and I saw stuff on the floor. Simple. Turn right around. Nope. Then Sherri missed her cue when the waitress helped the table opposite, one that filled ten minutes after we sat. Later, we scolded ourselves for being so passive. No big deal, but I hope we learned our lesson.
Except for the hour at lunch, we still miss Mr. Sun. No problem. We will continue south. Soon we'll be in the blistering heat of Las Vegas, and the cool chill will be nothing but a memory.