From my beautiful campsite near Crescent City, I drove Northwards and finally crossed the state line, woohoo! I was on something of a time crunch because I needed to get myself up to Portland to take part in some birthday celebrations (got my priorities straight), but I also wanted to check out potential places I might want to call home.
After a gas station breakfast, I took a drive via Grants Pass, onto Ashland. This is a gorgeous small town with a surprisingly eclectic mix of the super rich and the super vagrant sectors of society. So it’s not surprising I am drawn to the place, being a poor vagrant who has a magpie response to anything sparkly and expensive. The theme of surprisingly eclectic mixes continued with a glorious, light filled library, being counterbalanced with a rather cosy sex shop. It was called the love shop, but there were definitely more dildos than scented candles.
I have put Ashland on my list of Places I Could Live, assuming of course I find the magical forest in which dwells the ever fruitful Tree of Cash.
Next stop was Klamath Falls. My feeling is that I was likely here on a bit of a down day, because I’ve heard from multiple people that they loved this place, found it warm and homely … I turned up there and thought, “Did the apocalypse happen on the drive over? Did I somehow miss it?” I felt like Rick Grimes waking up in hospital, and found myself checking over my shoulder, wary of little girls that might turn out to be somewhat unalive.
Anyhoo, from there I needed to find a place to sleep for the night so I found a campground – after I missed the turning for the one I meant to go to – made myself a campfire (bloody hell lichen burns well) and got comfy for the night. I’d heard on the radio it was going to get cold, below freezing in fact, so I took precautions: tank top, T-shirt, sweater, fleece, leggings, trousers, socks, and a woolly hat, all wrapped up in a sleeping bag with not one but two blankets.
Here’s the thing about sub zero temperatures, you can be as warm as a piece of smoking toast in all your layers, but it doesn’t matter diddly squat when everything not in direct contact with your body turns into a fucking relic from the ice age. Body getting a tad stiff from sleeping in the foetal position? Well, tough it out buttercup, because if you turn over and your bare eyelid touches an unthawed patch of pillow you may well go into hypothermic shock. And don’t even think about stretching out your legs within those leggings, PJs, socks, blankets and sleeping bag, because that area of the Arctic circle you accidentally cross into is going to show you no mercy, get ready to meet your new travel buddy, Frostbite.
When daylight broke the next day I was out of there before my fingers regained feeling.