Monday, October 25, 2010

Banks (My farewell to HSBC)

So after being on the road this long its pretty clear I need to dump HSBC. Its been great, but you won't travel with me and you might (just might) have a branch in 1/5th of the places I've been. I'm walking around w all kinds of outstanding checks to deposit when we are finally reunited (for the last time).

That being said, I wonder if you being a foreign(ish) bank helps at all. I don't think you took bailout money like my 1st choice to replace you did (Bank of America). And even so is that a problem?

I'm not sure if you'd have a more cut and run attitude when sh*t hits the fan either. You are FDIC backed but then again it really would be nice to have a local branch to participate in a run on the bank scenario, if I so choose to, when the time comes.

So goodbye and good luck. I hope I don't develop an once of regret for this decision; a fleeting goal in so many of my previous breakups.

I'm in Juno Beach on my way to Miami. Ill fill in the Houston to FL stuff soon.
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Sunday, October 24, 2010


So the road from Austin to Houston was cattle and oil/gas rigs.  Even in town there are oil rigs.  I had arranged to stay at another one of Jon's (formerly of Brooklyn) friends places.  This one is Courtney, a friend from back in high school.  He lives outside of the central city in a rental addition that is connected to a nice Mexican family's house.  It was at the end of a cul-de-sac and had a huge open area for Max next to it.

I went to his grandfathers town in La Grange, TX to pick up special venison sausage.  It was awesome.

Courtney is a very interesting guy: musician, producer and science geek.  His religious beliefs lead us on a on  hunt for a rooster the second day I was there.  There is a lot more to the story if any one is interested!  I learnd a lot from Courtney in the short amount of time that I was with him.

We toured around downtown Houston and went to the Montrose district to bar hop and hand out with some of his friends who he plays music with.  Houston is super spread out, has little or no zoning, and has a thick air that I'm not used to at all.  It was also really hot and humid the days I was there.

I got to meet up with Nadine, also from coushsurfing, and from the Danimal experience in Flagstaff.  That being said, she is good friends with CJ, so I was a little nervous that I was going to be in hot water for the potential mess I left in Austin (which I now have been reassured was not a big deal).  We went to Angora Cafe, then went to one of Houston's premier dog parks (which wasn't that special to us sophisticated dog park travellers).  After dinner we said our farewell.  It was really cool to hang with Nadine.  She is a real traveller and a great spirit.

So I was off to New Orleans....


So a quick note on Amarillo...

The drive south through Colorado into Oklahoma and ending at Amarillo was interesting. There comes a point about when you are entering Texas when you start to see cotton growing on the side of the road. Pretty soon you realize that there is cotton surrounding you for miles. I was luck to be there right around the beginning of the harvest so there was no doubting what type of farm you were seeing. Rows of cotton balls as far as the eye could see. This lasts for hours and you suddenly have an appreciation for where your $4 for 3 white undershirt deal comes from, or while you are at it, where most of your clothes come from for that matter. So that was North Texas.

Amarillo to Austin was a little more cotton and then cattle country all the way to the outskirts of Austin.

NOTE: I'm getting towards the end of my trip and the pressure to have quick answers to "What are you going to do next" and "Where are you going to move" are all starting to weigh on me. My trip has turned into getting back in a reasonable amount of time while covering the ground that i wanted to cover and maybe just maybe enjoying it as I go along. Back to the story...

I had arranged to stay in Austin with CJ, a really cool girl I met through couchsurfing in Flagstaff. She stayed with the Danimal while I was at his place. She works full time and I basically drove around for two days and saw the town and talked with folks. Everyone kept emphasising "coolest place in Texas". After a while I started to envision it as an island of "OK'ness" in a sea of "Not really coolness" (Texas). The problem to me with that analysis is that I like travelling and exploring my surroundings and I don't anticipate that my current trip will end that urge (probably just strengthen it actually). Therefore it would be nice to move to a place where I feel more comfortable in the outskirts and had more of a diversity of things around it to go and explore.

The city had two nice dog parks that Max got to enjoy. CJ's development also had a fence in dog walking area. We thought that was pretty cool!

We went hiking in a really nice canyon. CJ's roommate and I, Katrina, lost track of CJ in the woods and it resulted in us having to look for her in the woods by flashlight. Not fun! We had CJ's house keys and cell phone in Katrina's bag so that really didn't help. Come to find out she jogged out of the park to a friends house and got a lift home. It left me thinking that this was all revenge for hitting it off pretty well with Katrina. So I go from love starved lonely traveller to messy love triangle in about a day. How frustrating is that! That in mind, I ran before it got ugly and crashed at Victor's house.

Victor is the long distance, long term boyfriend of my friend Jon's (formerly of Brooklyn) sister. Got that? Boyfriend-in-law of a friend of mine. Here I had my 2nd experience with an air mattress (1st was in Denver with Robin). I had to reinflate it five times in a night, but it has a built in electric pump so it wasn't that bad.

We went out that night and took a tour of downtown Austin and all the bars and clubs that are down there.  There is also an over the top amount of food trucks that are catering (and many owned by) the hipster crowd.  One, we located using twitter, specialized in Korean bulgogi taco's.  Yes, Korean-Mexican fusion cuisine, from a truck.  It was good.  The bar scene was over the top and very young.  In a two hour walk we probably passed 100 establishments that served liquor.

The next day we went to a breakfast taco place that was really cool. Then I hit the road to Houston.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Usually wouldn't share this but it needs to be shared...

Amazing findings if they are true:

I'm in Armarillo TX on way to Austin.

Thanks to Jon (from Queens) for sending this link to me.

I drove from Greely, CO to TX. Its was a nice rural drive on 287 south. About an hour of the day was on the interstate, and almost two hours at night. Ahhhh! My rules are breaking down! My lodging streak will not be broken though ;)

I had dinner at a Texas style roadhouse place (a brit would see it as just a pub with huge bull horn racks on the wall, but here we have a special name for it). My waitress showed some interest in meeting up for a drink after her shift so I went along with it to see where things would go. After a brief tour of her tattoo's and explanations as to what cup size she choose for her implants and a full history on her long term BF who is in Austria for the year, it actually became apparent things wouldn't work out. I live in my car, she lives at home and has too much baggage in the distant BF guilt dept that all it was going to be was a nice chat (and tattoo tour). Holiday Inn could have gotten my money for once last night but it didn't.

I slept in Walmart and yes, this blog post is being written from a stall, LOL.

Let me brush my teeth and get out of here!
Have a good day,
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Saturday, October 9, 2010

Moving right along... (Eastward Ho!)

San Diego - I thought I was going to like San Diego, a lot! I miscalculated this and given that it was at the end of my end to end PCH run, I felt like I had to push on to reach it because I was of course going to fall in love. It felt like a police state. As much as or more than NYC. Its a Military, Border and Shore Leave town all in one and that's just not my crowd. I know that about myself. The water part of the water front is obscured for miles by military ships parked in the harbor. I wouldn't want to go sailing around all of that. Then you add the in-place AND roving Border Patrol check points (bright lights, shotguns and dogs) inside and outside of the city, and it was just a non starter for me. I'll trade you winter for not having to feel like I need my passport to be on me all the time.
Jan Brewer took Arizona off my list for that same reason.

Mohave - So if you can overlook the "hiding in plain sight as I sleep every night" routine, I do have to admit myself that sometimes I do stuff that seems very suspicious. Like taking local roads to get out of San Diego
at 8am on a Saturday morning and then staying off the highway all the way to Las Vegas, through the Mohave, skirting around Joshua Tree. Whatever! I want to see what I want to see. Why should I feel paranoid about it or let others convince me that these are things I shouldn't do. As I am nearing the end of this first great trip of my life, I'm suddenly looking back at all the warnings and "You're crazy!"'s and realizing that I'm so glad I didn't let them stop me from just going out and doing what I do. Its been fun and Max has enjoyed and benefited from it too.
So the Mojave was interesting, but it was no Utah.

Las Vegas - so I expected to not like vegas. I wanted to not like vegas. I really loved the experience! I'm glad got there about half an hour after dark set in, spent the night walking around, talking to people, and riding roller coasters at the casinos. It was way bigger than I thought it was going to be. It felt like Disney, but adult sized. The crowd was young too. I made it from MGM (where I parked for free), to Bills Gambling Hall and back before I was ready to hit the sack at 1am. I was so tired and on auto pilot all I could think of was "Leave me alone" when I was approached by two hot younger girls in the MGM lobby that I'm sure were looking to just ask me the time, LOL. I regret not having enough mental energy to at least play along w the conversation. It would have been fun to see the "You live in your car" reaction from them!!!
I stayed a few blocks away in the Days Inn (or was it Super 8) parking lot. No problems at all.
The next morning I drove the strip in a hazy daylight. It was cool to see the curtain pulled back on the movie like set I had fallen into the night before. But it didn't make me want to not want to go back again. In fact, when I do I will try my best to not see the sun the whole time I'm there. Its better that way :) but this time I was up by 9 and trying to make it to the South Rim of the Grandest of Canyons by sundown.

GC - I got to the grand canyon sunday just past sunset, so it was pretty desolate and I remember more people being at the North Rim, but that was in the middle of summer. The view is just as good. The south is "larger" to accommodate more people but it gets used too. I'm so glad I was there when I was, it was so slow. So slow, no one noticed a clutzy move I made in the parking lot that left me needing one new tire. If you have been then you can understand, its 80 miles to anything that might have a tire and they are all south and west, not in my direction. So suddenly Big-O in Page Az came to mind. They did my serpentine belt during my figure eight loop tour of Utah. But they were 142 miles of agonizing, is my tire going to exploded at 65mph on a wet road in the middle of the desert. Yes, it was raining and it seemed like the storms that I started with Sunday morning were going to just keep following me until I was to get over the rockies onto the other side of the continental divide. It was awesome being able to see the clouds and what was to become a confirmed tornado touchdown (It happened in Page, AZ, 24hrs after I left but was moving at us as I blew out of Hite, UT towards Denver.

Page - Aside from having to deal with the not as nice as the rest of the crew, Wayne, at Big-O Tire in Page Arizona, it was good to be back in a place I really liked the first time. I storm watched for most of the drive and got poured on many times especially during the tire job. Then I went to Lone Rock beach, paid my 10 bucks and found my camp spot for the night.

As small side note: While I was back on the reservation, out of curiosity and to get a few of you off my back about it, I finally called Vanessa (lives on Navajo reservation and joined me for 8 or so days earlier in my trip) and neither number I have for her worked. I will have to scour my email to see if I can find one for her and still then I'd say its only a 25% chance she will reply. I don't think I'll ever have a 100% answer for some of our suspicions that she lied about having to go back to Albuquerque for summer school. And for anyone who maybe thinking that I was thinking of setting up a drive by booty call, just picture me in the hot sun frantically setting up a tent in her parents "front yard"with her standing there patiently waiting LOL.

Hite - Officially proclaimed the "Best Middle of Nowhere in America" by yours truly. It was great to see my friends Arthur and Mellisa. Art (avid gun collector), finally heard me say for the third time "I've never shot a gun" and we both resolved to fix that as soon as he could finish cleaning a few to take with us. About an hour later we were getting in the car with a Glock 9mm and a HK assault rifle. Both are highly illegal in my home state, like minimum mandatory sentence illegal. So about a 20 minute drive was enough for the two of us to be far enough on BLM land to "target practice". We pulled a boulder from the side of the road and set it about 200 feet from the car, turned on the high beams and I got my safety lesson that culminated with shooting a few magazines of both guns. Afterwards, I gently insisted that we pick up the empty brass shell casings via the headlights which arthur complied. I got a good hoot out of him dismissing my suggestion that people use "Brass catchers" (a small mesh bag to catch empty shells, for recycling and not leaving evidence of your fun). "Those are totally gangster. That's like something out of Die Hard". I don't know what the hell that was supposed to mean because this guys entire collection of guns are like right out of Die Hard. One of the things I don't like about guns is finding used shells and wanting to pick them up but then thinking i might be putting my prints on something I shouldn't be. I guess that mind set is from growing up in the city.

Denver - I drove from Hite to Denver in one day. There was a confirmed Tornado touched down just as I was leaving near Bullfrog. This was just after I saw my second full double rainbow of my trip (Salida CO was the first). I stayed with Robin from my high school in Boston. It was good to see her. We looked around Denver and it is definitely on the short list of places that I could see my self relocating, short or long term. I really liked her neighborhood and the rents were like 450 a month for a 1br, with parking and a fitness room in the basement. What a deal!

FT Collins - so now I am in Ft Collins CO with Stephanie, Clarisse's doula from Brooklyn who relocated with her family out here (Greeley, to be exact) about a year ago. I met a cool girl last night at a birthday party that Steph threw for her husband.

Today we went out and drove around downtown Ft Collins. Its nice, reminds me of a toned down version of the idealic town setting that Pasadena was designed from scratch to be.

We are hopefully going to go out tonight and maybe I'll get to see the girl I met last night again.

Next up - Austin, Houston, New Orleans, Miami, the Keys, hang glide again in GA, NYC.

The only things that come to mind that I might want to do in addition to these items are take 1 day motorcycle class (just for the experience) and maybe go hunting in the south on my way north.
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Friday, October 8, 2010


So I was in LA for about a week. I got to see my two cousins from New Bedford and Wakefield Massachusetts for dinner. I had dinner with one of my moms closest friends and he husband in Pasadena (its lovely but I still want to rename it Phoney Town).

I stayed with Mike and Steve (twins, but separate houses) from the South End (Boston). We went to the same HS years apart from each other. I also got to hang with their other brother Paul a lot. He recently found himself hit with the "I'm pregnant" news but with a twist. He is paralyzed from about the chest down (can't feel his nipples) and wasn't expecting natural insemination to actually occur. That said, his lady is 3 months now, moving in and he has tons of work to do on his place. I helped for two days (11hrs the 1st, and 14 the 2nd which was also LA's hottest day on record, ever!). We cleaned up his drive way, yard work, planted a tree, threw out about 3 cubic yards of stuff and set aside another half dumpster full of stuff for a "yard sale". We organized all of his files from his accident (motorcycle), medical records, mortgage info, you name it! Then there was the pile of unopened mail that had been building up since March LOL.
I'm glad we got what we could get done out of the way. I just hope his lady notices it and appreciates it before she arrives with all her stuff.

Paul and I hung out a lot outside of the project I helped him on. He showed me around from his handicap accessible van and we always got the best spot in the lot :) I learned a lot about what a disabled person goes through every day.

I also went with Steven to an exhibit/memorial that he helps set up every Sunday on the Santa Monica beach. Its called "Arlington West" and there are crosses representing the lives lost in Afghanistan and Iraq, civilian and soldiers. It was interesting seeing the tourists and locals alike trying to make sense of the memorial. In addition, there were a lot of post battle, rehab and injury photos that were just gruesome and not like what you see on TV at all.

Coincidentally there was also a charity dog walk that day at the beach. Max and I stumbled into a 500+ dog event. We passed on the dog walk and the dog yoga session, but we did get to pay close attention to the doggy CPR session which we will hopefully never need to use. Anyway, we got to say hi to about 300 different dogs in the course of about 2 hours, so and we got along with all but maybe two!

I had two confrontations in LA that were very surprising...
I was at Steve's place leaving with Max when we came out and Peanut the crazy dog from next door when wild on Max. I got Max backed away when I noticed a fat big turd on Steves welcome mat. I said out loud, "Oh, Peanut, you think shitting on the welcome mat is going to get rid of us?" We walked away and when I got to the door from the courtyard to the street, a voice behind me was calling at me "Hey, buddy". I turn around and the other neighbor, not a dog owner, gets in my face saying "aren't you going top pick the shit up or are you just going to leave it there." I just turned and walked away. I'm not getting into a "Its not my dog's shit" argument with a stranger!

Next: I was staying at Mike's and he was coming to pick me up to go hiking (in a park that a movie editor died in a few days later in due to heat exhaustion). When he got there the parking lot was full so he pulled in at an angle behind my car. A older chubby guy came out and said something to him (please move your car, I found out later) and Mike started to put his dogs in the car so he could move it. Suddenly the man jumps in his car, throws it into reverse and repeatedly hits a fence trying to un wedge himself from the hastily taken angle in the packed driveway. It was just at this point that I even realized they were in an argument...

It was on Mikes mind the entire time we were hiking and I kept telling him to blow it off.

Then two days later I come out to go to my car in the morning and the same guy is at his car removing tool boxes and buckets from his car. I wait for him to get away from the rear of his car and I back up leaving at least a foot between me and his tool buckets (yeah, I though about it before hand and used my mirrors to execute). The guy comes running from around the front of his car towards my car at the rear of his, wielding a broom stick which suddenly is repeatedly stuck on my windshield! Like five times! I jumped out and starting screaming at the guy "what the F do you think you are doing". His reply is " you are about to hit my tools". What kind of tools can't take a 2000 lb car? Dork. He just wanted to attack someone and as I pulled out I let him know "Hey dipshit, I just want to let you know, you picked the wrong MF to F with today"

Flashback: Three days earlier the kid who lives downstairs from Mike, also named Mike, came up to ask me to use my cell phone. Seems that he had misplaced his and needed to make some calls. Come to find out he grew up in this complex of two houses and his parents still own the whole place. They let him live there for free I think. Well, cutting to the chase, his car is also messed up and his is flooring it up the hill at night and then rolling it back down to get it started every morning. He called his mom and asked her to pick him up from the garage that he needed to drop off his car at... No answer, no message left and so ten minutes after he leaves I have a Type A litigator calling me back wanting to know who I am and why I have her number,etc. By the end of the conversation we are fast friends and she is recommending me places to eat and see. So there is the gem: I know the owner of this property, she likes me, she is a lawyer and you don't have a lease (and you started crap w my friend who is a tenant two days ago too).

So I gave her an innocent call about 20 minutes after I left the house, 930am Sunday LOL.
She was actually working in the office, if you can believe that, and was pissed to hear about what happened. She took my info and 20 minutes later I was BCC'd on the badest ass legal threat letter I have ever read. I will share it with you individually if you are interested. Bottom line, get that man out of here ASAP or everyone vacate within a week. Let's just say, I'm sure we won't be hearing from that cat again. Silenced!

So what the hell do I attract these confrontations or is something else?

This article doesn't come to mind but maybe it should:
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Made it to Mexico!

(One week ago Friday)
So I woke up today in La Jolla California. I drove more of the coast and then went to see Dan (a guy from couchsurfing that lives in San Diego). I'm going to stay with him for about two nights.

So my impressions of San Diego so far: Its much more of a military and border town than I thought. It seems to have a lot less of the laid back California vibe that I have come to expect as I worked my way down the coast.

I decided to be prudent and park at Dan's to take the San Diego trolley system to San Ysidro (a part of San Diego that is the US side of the border). The train let's you off and everyone goes charging up a concrete ramp bridge that winds over all of the car traffic. Its been stormy all day and the rain really began to come down when I cross the border. It was like a sign saying leave or be prepared to stay a while. Well I didn't even stay long enough to get a photo of myself. It was due to a lack of people in Tiajuana that looked like I wanted to hand them my camera (or blackberry in this case). Even in the rain it was a bit of a zoo. Hole in the wall pharmacies, taxi drivers barking "Taxi" and lots of street food that I want going to eat. That was about it so I turned around, walked over two more bridges and was suddenly in line for the US. There were only 15 people in front of me so it took about 5 minutes. I was surprised. Then again all I have is a licence, a passport, 50 bucks, a map, keys to Dan's and my phone all packed into my cargo shorts.

So I'm kind of on schedule (Oct 31 return to NYC)! This doesn't mean that I'm not nervous about wasting too much time along the way back.
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Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Crazy Signs

Photos of signs that stuck out to a guy from the East Coast.

Saturday, September 18, 2010


Ha! Finally a daily post...

I'm in... Los Angeles. I'd need to look up what area to be exact. Beverly Hills is what google maps says LOL! I laugh because I can't believe it (that's the feeling I get when I show up anywhere whose name I recognize).

I'm going to stay tonight w Steven, son of a family friend that's so close she is basically an aunt which makes her three sons like cousins of mine. They all also grew up in the south end, so I'm just thrilled to have familiar folks to hang with (and stay with, can't emphasize that enough!) especially in a big city. Let me also not forget that I have two blood cousins here too, one that can't host (he's an RA on a campus) and the other, well I'm not sure, but he is farther down near san diego.

So I'm in the area for a while. I want to be done and heading east by Oct 1st at the latest and I just might meet that goal.

Max got to visit the Westminster Dog Park in Santa Monica! It was fun. We even met a woman who was walking her dog there that was living in a cave on the beach with her daughter until she could find a job. You'd never had know it either LOL. Who am I to speak, I look homeless right now with my dirty jeans, sandy crocs and I last showered in San Fran on Sunday night. so I kind of stand out here in Beverly Hills and yeah, I'm so glad that I'm going to get a shower tonight. Its like the new "getting laid" LOL.

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Big Sur to Lompoc

LOMPOC- sounds like a military acronym but it actually a native american named town just outside of a military/NASA base. They shot rockets off two night ago and have another launch that I will miss in three days.

So I stayed at Holiday Inn last night! "AT" not "IN", LOL. And apparently my appearance at the front desk this morning wasn't well presented because when I asked to use the bathroom I was shot down with a skeptical "Are you a guest here?!?". So I had to cross the street to Starbucks instead.

Big Sur was really nice. Desolate, very undeveloped for a vacation spot and nice beaches that all have a unique feature (this one has a freshwater waterfall into the ocean, this one has Jade deposits loose in the sand, etc.). The people, locals and tourists alike, were all friendly (oh, my!).

Max's tooth is healing fine. He ran around yesterday on the beach for most of the day. Sand Dollar Beach was a winner.

So I'm driving south, staying on the coast road ("1" which merges into and away from the more major "101" every 60 miles or so. "1" is a hell of a road. I counted 15 turns in 1 minute a few days ago and aside from a few 10 mile stretches of straight road one or twice a day, its rollarcoaster the whole way (with steep drop offs to keep you awake). The fog is another thing. Its either thick, thin or looming nearby. The whole way from Canada.

So I'm trying to get to Malibu today. I just got delayed by 5 hours to have my brake calipers replaced. Milea will be owing me money from the work they did or didn't do before I left NYC and I have the old parts in the car for ammo.
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Friday, September 17, 2010

I'm in Big Sur

So I'm not going to make excuses for not blogging for a while.

I'm in Big Sur staying on the side of the road next to a fancy bakery and restaurant that didn't get $25 from me for dinner (cheapest entree). Dai, the attendant at the gas station gave me permission. Its funny how I have a 100% success rate at getting permission from gas station employees after I cozy up to them. In Dai's case, I asked him is he was Buddhist (he has beaded necklace and his name is Dai) and he was impressed that I could call him out like that. (Rewind to Val Mason and the look on his face when I asked him what part of Virginia his family was from...) People are funny when you surprise them with what you know, where you have been or what you can tell about them from subtle clues. It can be hard for me not to take it personally, like "oh, you think someone like ME wouldn't know a thing about that, eh?"

We started today in Ocean Grove just south of Monterey. We stayed in a residential neighborhood on a third tier little path. I found a box truck parked there so I just pulled head in as to kiss the truck. Got my blinds set up, magnetic sunroof screen installed and then realized that there was a dog in the yard that knew Max and I were in the car.

I skipped the Monterey Aquarium. Their main exhibit is closed and they still want $30.

While we are on the topic of skipping stuff because they are blatantly over charging: Pebble Beach. Its a peninsula that they have convinced everyone is private property and you are either an owner, an invited visitor or a person like me that they want to charge $9.50 a car to drive through their town. Telluride (Mountain Village), Aspen, Jackson Hole, or East Hampton... None have descended to this bullsh*t and I hope they never do.

Carmel by the Sea however was great. The main beach is all off leach all the time. Amazing view but it still has a little off the snob oozing over from Pebble Beach, which is half of the two peninsulas that make the cove that is Carmel. Very nice area. I wish I knew how to make a living there.

I met numerous nice people in Carmel at the beach that wanted to talk. It was great.

This is in opposition to an experience that I had recently with a man and his wife (its really his wife) at a sunset overlook on the pacific in Marin Cty. She thanked me from her window for "Being such a good dog owner" for picking up Max's poop in front of her. Fine. A little condescending but fine. Then I said I was from NYC and I was used to having to pick it up so it was 2nd nature and not a problem to me. We got into the basic, "Oh, you drove from NY" talk, which was interrupted by the dreaded "But how are YOU paying for this?" (which can feel like a double standard question depending on who it is coming from and how it is said.)

I explained and she took off on "I know you... You are a liberal from New York and belong to a city union and are taking advantage of that to go on a long trip".

I set her straight that I didn't live in distressed neighborhoods while I had good jobs for nothing. This is my payoff.

Next: Obama...
My response "He's OK, and you have to remember what he was handed to begin to measure him."
She came back with: "Do you believe in or follow Black Liberation Theology"
At first I though, "WTF is that?!? And who the hell do you think you are talking to?!?." Then I realized that it tied into her quickly mentioning Rev. Wright. At this point, I was ready to explode; Laughter, Disgust and Offended. In hindsight I should had said "Hey, you are white. Doesn't that make you a Klan Member? What White Power gang are you guys affiliated with? How many crosses did YOU GUYS burn last year?"

This story, I realize, is in direct opposition to the cool feeling I get when I deal with folks like Dai, here at the gas station. I read him but didn't go negative on him and we shared a brief but common moment of coolness along the lines of "Hey, someone from very far away recognizes things about me that are important positive identifiers of me as an individual."

I have someone that just parked next to me that I'm going to go check out (they are lingering way too long). I'll try to blog tomorrow and fill in the last missing month.
See the map below for my progress up until a few days ago.

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Friday, August 20, 2010

Portland and back to the coast

So I'm back in Cannon Beach for the second time. I took a four night trip to Portland on Monday and now its Friday and I'm back in Cannon Beach. It was a sunny day and I'm waiting for the sun the finish setting before I go find some seafood and a free wifi connection.

We've been at the beach for 7 hours now and its been cold the whole time. I have a long sleeve thermal, a sweatshirt and a gore tex shell on and long johns and jeans on the bottom... And I'm still cold.

The beach here has a great little feature called Haystack Rock. Its worth looking up.

Portland was great. It was like Boston, more laid back because it is west coast, and I didn't find any of the tense busy bodies I met in Seattle. I stayed with Bryan from Couchsurfing and he was a great host. He had a total of 7 other couch surfers during the time I was there. 2 girls from North Dakota, 3 college students (one from Newton MA), and 2 hitch hiking girls.

The two hitch hiking girls are worth mentioning... They were unemployed, both done with school, one was a fire dancer (flaming hoola hoop style), and they said they were hitching down to Florida and the Gulf to document the oil spill.

I drove around Portland, sat around in Pioneer square for lunch, tried to go sailing twice (no wind), went to Mt. Tabor and the dog park there, visited a few other small parks and walked around town with Bryan and two of the other surfers he had.

So I'm back on the road.
My next stops are as follows:
Continuing on the coats highway as much as possible through Oregon and Cali.
Redwoods Nat. Park
San Fran
San Diego
Movaje Nat Preserve
Death Valley
Las Vegas
Grand Canyon S. Rim
Austin Tx
New Orleans
Lookout Mt. Georgia (hang gliding)
Hunting in Virginia or N. Carolina
DC to say hi to Family and friends
New York (hopefully in time for the Halloween Parade)

I have a map to show this. Comments and suggestions are welcome :)

Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Verizon has me covered

So I've been w them for a month and aside from not being able to get me data coverage in Canada, Verizon's coverage has done shame to ATT's. And Verizon's customer service has been A+ so far. My battery died during a call with them and they tried me back 45 minutes later to continue the call. Wow!

So let's just hope I get coverage when I get back in my apt in NYC, LOL

Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Saturday, August 14, 2010

My 1st Casino

So I left Eugene in Seattle this morning and drove on I-5 for about an hour south (interstate=painful). Then after cutting through Olympia, WA via the streets, I broke off onto local roads and out to the coast. I hit the coast at Aberdeen. I could have thought I was on a Cape Cod beach or on the Hamptons. It was straight, light gray sand and had all the looking of a great east coast beach. It was a little hazy when I hit the beach and within a half a mile of walking the haze had turned to fog and suddenly you couldn't even see where the water was.

So I headed back to the car and kept driving south. The area, although ocean front is surprisingly poor looking. Like the area missed the whole last two real estate booms entirely. Not too many places to car sleep that I felt comfortable with so I kept driving knowing something would come... Zoom out the map of the GPS and what's that yellow area coming up? Another reservation. And that just might mean a Casino! Its saturday too, so this might just be a hoot.

The security guard working the parking lot just informed me to speak to Sharon about overnight parking. Let's see how this goes :)

Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry