Home > Travel > Hitchhiking > 11/18/15

The night was quiet. Wind now and then. The temperature dropped and I put on my sweatshirt.

It dropped again at 3am. So much so that I woke up certain it was that 4am wake up call I talked about before. When I realized it wasn’t I knew it was only going to get colder.

Reluctantly I pulled the All Weather Blanket from my pack. That’d be just one more thing I had to fold and pack in the morning. But once it was over me I was relieved. Almost instantly I felt warmer. It took the cold edge off and I easily went back to sleep even though the temps dropped into the low 30’s according to my thermometer. And that doesn’t take wind chill into effect.

I felt hidden enough that I slept in a bit. Sat in the doorway of my tent and had breakfast. Frozen cream cheese and pepperoni on a tortilla with a little sand for good measure. I packed up and walked the rest of the way into Cottonwood Cove not knowing what to expect. Not once offered a ride by people passing who knew I was miles from anything in either direction.

First I found a dime on the side of the road. So I started visualizing finding money on the side of the road. Not change but cash.

Beleive. Make it happen.

But it was more beer bottles and broken boat accessories than sand and creosote. Then, in what looked like a lost piece of black plastic death smiled. It looked like a lost Halloween prop, so, intrigued, I picked it up. A brand new pair of Columbia convertible pants like the ones I wore. Only these were for fishermen and a couple of sizes too big.

Money had to be in the pockets I thought. But it was half a fake worm and an empty ziplock bag. Still, a $70 pair of pants in almost new condition. I took a few pics and will sell them online as soon as I can get online. So much for carrying too many clothes already. Why not add a pair of strangers pants to the mix.

Cottonwood Cove, for all my worrying, does have $10 campsites. No working outlets anywhere, but hey. There are literally 3 people here, and I have to wonder if the girl at the tourist shop gets paid by the hour even when there are zero tourists. A couple of fishermen yes, but nobody who’s going to come in and buy a Cottonwood Grove t-shirt, sweatshirt or shot glass.

Everything here is two to three times as expensive as it is back, in what? The real world? Back on the highway? Everything except alcohol. Hard alcohol I mean, even the beer and wine coolers and hard lemonade are priced way out of realistic guidelines.

But vodka? Vodka is the same price here as back in Providence, as back in Virginia. Same price as Oregon. Must be a sign, right?

The beach is weird. It looks like sand until you step on it. Then your feet sink into this underground layer of black muck that won’t come off. I walk further out. Stripping off my clothes. I want to get the sun on my body.

I wash my socks in the lake and lay them out to dry. I drink and try to tan and try not to be embarrassed by how fat I’ve become. There is no one out here but me.

And the duck.

I pulled my food bag out and he waits. I throw him a few pieces of tortilla and he gets most of it. Then here comes a seagull. My welfare birds I call them. Happy for a handout. But who isn’t, right? Only the seagull can catch food thrown to him, or her, as I suspect, is the case this time. Not sure why. Something with the eyes.

I stop and put away the tortilla’s and another bird shows up.

“Too late buddy, sorry.”

They hang around on the off chance I’ll change my mind, then wander off to do whatever they do. Only the duck returns. I suspect that he may live here, or at least close. He sits less than 5 feet away, making himself comfortable. And because of that, the seagull returns. Only upon landing in the water it takes three steps and catches something in its beak. A snack. Something pink and that was living but is now his lunch.

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