Friday, August 10, 2007

Washington Road Trip - Day 1

Down to the waterfront to catch the Victoria/Port Angeles ferry. Bustle my way through customs and onboard with what feels like seconds to spare. Ferry leaves 40 minutes later. Sun is unbearable out on the reflective white deck, and I make a mental note to head inside before I get too sunburnt. But then the boat leaves the harbor, the wind picks up, and everything feels great. Lie down and fall fast asleep on the front deck, backpack serving as a pillow.
Wake up about 45 minutes later with head buzzing and skin the colour of a neon turnip. Boat is heading into deep fog and they are closing off the front deck to passengers. Temperature drops about 15 degrees. Suddenly everything looks like a Fritz Lang movie.
Head inside to get some food and discover that the boat's 'cafeteria' consists of a coffee-flavored water machine, a pile of packaged rocks disguised as donuts, and a sullen teen applying pink nail polish to her fingernails. This ain't BC Ferries, as sign after sign reminds me:

Buy some coffee-flavoured water, grab a seat next to the family playing bridge, and read about crocodiles (via David Quammen) for the rest of the trip.
CJB is there right on schedule in Port Angeles. Already having vacuumed the local thrifts and paperback exchanges for everything they're worth, he's ready for lunch. We eat at a diner that looks straight out of a Stephen Shore photograph. The first of many.
Head south along the peninsula in CJB's new/old car. Photographs are taken, art argued over, the finer points of relationships examined at length. Stop for dinner in Aberdeen, where the local restaurant's book rack has copies of "Western Logging," "The Founding of Aberdeen," and "Kurt Cobain: The Real Story."
Long, fruitless discussion of Iraq over bad food.
Head further south and find a motel for the night. It's Shark Week on the Discovery Channel. Three hours of Great White breaching footage later, travelers drift off to sleep.