Mavis and I were near Florence, Oregon the week before Thanksgiving. We had decided to camp at one of the various state and national parks that dot the Pacific coast. The constant rain was a pitter patter on the van as we woke up from our camping slumber in our designated space next to the ocean. We van-camp instead of utilizing the tent on days where we know it’s going to be windy, rainy or cold; we learned our lesson back in Illinois. I opened the van, let Mavis do her thing and shortly afterwards stumbled in the early dawn to the restroom area to do my thing. I decided to open the tailgate and watch the skies turn from deep dark navy to lighter shades of pink and blue, (see picture below). I put Mavis back in her nest of blankets and pillows and I watched the ocean from the back of the tailgate, canopied by the open door. (Mavis didn’t like the sounds of the ocean, but she liked the smell. Satiated, she decided to go back to sleep.) The camping manager tooled around in his golf cart and admonished me for parking the van in the opposite direction of clockwise. (I had parked this way specifically so that the tailgate had a view of the shore. As I was one of a grand total of five people in the campground that could probably fit a hundred, I didn’t really think it was a big deal.) I told him I’d be leaving soon. He asked if I could turn around the van anyway. Ok, I said. I did, sat for a moment, and decided to pack it up, a little miffed that my morning had already been upset. Meh, I thought a minute later, he was only doing his job.
I continued to take the road down the coast. After stopping for breakfast, I decided to check out (no pun intended) the Florence Siuslaw library which was blissfully open. A large, sprawling building, it was also very busy. I pulled up a table and utilized their wifi to work on this blog, not getting in the way of the librarians. I was there the week before Thanksgiving, and noted a lot of people were there to meet friends and family. It was indeed the center hub of Florence, which made me happy. I noted a lot of the shelves were well weeded, the historical and genealogical room was well used, the various collections bright and shining. The wifi could have been more robust, especially in some of the peripheral areas, but that was a minor issue. I bought a CD from the Friends tray (for those many times I seemed to be on the road without a decent audio companion.) I even overheard one lady complain about the constant rain to which the librarian good-naturedly replied: "It's winter. This is Oregon. It rains here." I smiled. I have said this a billion times before to various patrons of my own, substituting the words "Oregon" with "Chicago" and "rains" with "snows".
Pictures below: A.) The sunset view from the back end of my minivan of my ocean side campground. I incurred the wrath of the campground manager for this shot; this job can be treacherous some times. B.) Mavis sniffs the site the next morning. C.) On the path to the ocean the next morning, I came across this sobering sign. I'm not in Chicago any more. D.) A yurt-a newfangled way of camping that is more eco-friendly than a traditional cabin. I took pictures looking in from the outside E.) Interior of the yurt. F.) Interior of yurt, featuring view of acrylic skylight. G.H. & I.) Roadside art in Bandon, Oregon: Sculptures of a man and boy enjoying their day on bicycles. J.) A tsunami warning sign. I'm really not in Chicago anymore. K.) Florence, Oregon's Siuslaw Public library. L.&M.) The history/genealogy room at Siuslaw library. N.) Library notice with hand-written citation.