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The Indefinite Article.

Monday, August 16, 2004

What's that smell?

Hi all,

Saturday early afternoon, we decided to get a bit out of town. Sick of being in the neighborhood with all of it's mowing and sawing and general neighborhoodness. Out came the map and we pointed, talked, pointed, nodded, and packed up the car. Packed just a bit, not the usual - prepare for all possible dissasters - style packing, and headed west.
If you get out a map and look at where Oregon and Washington meet, right on the coast there is a penninsula on the washington side, right above Astoria, that is where we ended up.
Along the way we passed the now "out of service" Trojan Nuclear reactor, a dead porcupine that we stopped and looked at for a bit, since none of us had ever seen one in the wild, and still have yet to see one that wasn't.....spread out. Did you know that the quills are like the quill part of a feather? We saw americas forrests piled high outside the paperbag and cardboard factories, and watched as tractor trailers pulled three trailers, kind-of a mini train.
We arrived at the coast and attempted to find a place to stay, but since there was a volleyball tournament in one beach town and a kite festival in the next, all accomadations were taken, and the one place that had a vaccancy was a best western that was charging $260 a night. So after a bit of looking and a bit of driving we finally found a good sam (samaritan) "camping ground."

This was more like a sardine lot for R.V.s seasoned with an occasional tent. When I say sardine can, I do not use the term as a cliche, I swear this place was packed to the hilt with the massive tour bus style R.V.s, the ones that have an SUV as a get-away car. All of them equipped with their own satelite dishes and the familiar blue flickering glow.
Since I was "camping" the presence of the mass media was a bit odd, at first, and it lent my mind the drifting thoughts of how years gone past people would congregate in new surroundings to celebrate their common bonds and delight in the discrepencies. I was passing a particular defunct r.v. and was accosted by the all to familiar sounds of pissed off people and their frustration at the inability to escape themselves with new surroundings, and was reminded why modern society has chosen prerecorded entertainment over chancy encounters with unknown elements.

This whole place was full of people that were there, for the most part, to go salmon fishing at the mouth of the columbia river. Not only were there R.V.s used to fill in the large spaces at the camp ground, and cars to take up the nooks-n-crannies, but also there were boats to take up all execess space and spill out into the roadways and generally add that odd clamp of visual dissonance that results from attempts at parking nonwheeled objects in unfamiliar places.

So what do you do with Hefty Salmon when you catch them? You put em in your cooler. What do you do with your cooler at the end of the day? You bring it back to camp. What do you do with the fish when you get back to camp? you clean 'em. Where do you clean 'em?
Well if you are ignorant to the ways of fishing, as am I, do not go and try to cook at the covered gazebo that resembles an outdoor bar-b-que kitchen. the one with the propane tanks and large pots and counters....and......garden hoses......wait a minute....that's no Bar-b-que gazebo. Oh......that is where you bring you fish to clean them. And that slowly spinning feeling that is simulteneously pinching from behind my eyes and rising from my acid stomache is the smell of the thousands of pounds of fish guts that are in the dumpsters. Those Hot and sun baked dumpsters. Those dumpsters that have been sitting on the reflective asphault all summer long. the dumpsters that are so covered in sloppy funk that the flies are stuck to the outside, wet ashtray style. So foul that the plastic shed lids have buckled and curled in the hot foul odor emmenating from their rotten guts.

So...Good Sam camp ground, warrenton oregon. Cross that ones off the travel destination list.


  • Hey colin, nice post! Usually when you ask "Whats that smell" it means that you were eating crunchy style peanut butter sandwhiches.

    By Blogger pablo, at 2:04 PM  

  • Well, when i saw "what's that smell?" i thought maybe Laura had posted.

    By Blogger Killy, at 2:19 PM  

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