We stopped for gas and coffee about an hour into our journey. The Starbucks we stopped at was connected to a Mexican fast food restaurant, which gravely concerned Val. She felt better when I pointed out the two places just shared a building—it wasn’t like they made the coffee and the tacos in the same area! My coffee was OK, but Val compared hers to McDonald’s coffee . . . and she doesn’t have a high opinion of McDonald’s coffee!
We stopped at a Walmart for supplies, and then we went to McDonald’s for lunch. There, Nate and I got our first taste of Tillamook ice cream—delicious! We’ll be going to the Tillamook Cheese Factory while Beth works on Friday.
Many people warned us about the road between Spokane and Portland. I came away from each conversation thinking “barren wasteland” . . . but that really wasn’t the case. Sure, the drive wasn’t as breathtakingly beautiful as much of our drive has been, but it wasn’t so bad. Part of Washington actually reminded me and Val of Kansas.
Our drive became more interesting once we hit Oregon. We followed the Columbia River, and the view was, at times, spectacular. We stopped at Multnomah Falls, which I’ve wanted to see ever since I read the Robin Jones Gunn book Echoes in high school. (Should I even admit that? Anyway, part of the story—which I recounted in great detail for my fellow travelers—takes place at Multnomah Falls.) It was not what I was expecting. Beautiful, yes, but I think the Hidden Falls has it beat.
We finally got to Cannon Beach around 7. Beth met us at the park, and we walked over to Pizza a Feta for supper. It was the cheapest meal we’ve had yet—we each ordered one piece of pizza, and our breadsticks were free because they were out of the “real” ones and had to substitute—and it was delicious. Then we went to see Haystack Rock, rented a movie, and went to Beth’s apartment.
I slept through most of the movie—Inkheart starring Brendan Frasier. I can’t remember the last time I slept through I movie I hadn’t seen before, but I was suddenly exhausted! Val slept through some of it, too.
Following the movie, we all crashed . . . me and Val on a foam mattress, Steph on a loveseat, and Nate on an air mattress. Poor Nate got the shaft everywhere else, even sleeping on the floor in our motel rooms, so we decided to be nice to him at Beth’s ☺
This morning, we slept in—a wonderful thing! Then we headed to Astoria, where we had brunch. We went to Coffee Girl, and we were all quite impressed. I had a bagel sandwich—cheddar cheese bagel, cream cheese, turkey, and cheddar—and a latte. Both were excellent! Nate, Steph, and Beth all had paninis, and Val had yogurt with fruit and granola.
After Coffee Girl, Beth took us to see the sea lions, only they were nowhere to be found! Then we went to the Astoria Column. I think it has some sort of historical significance, but I don’t know what! It’s a very tall tower that you can climb to the top of. For me, coming down was a lot harder than going up. The staircase was spiral, and I got really dizzy going down. Beth bought Val and Nate little airplanes to fly from the top. Nate’s won, though Val’s also flew a very impressive distance!
Next, we crossed the Astoria Bridge, which doesn’t go underwater as Nate thought his mother had said. The Astoria Bridge connects Oregon and Washington. Once in Washington, we went to Cape Disappointment State Park. Surprisingly (at least for this Nebraskan), the park was free for day users. We hiked to two lighthouses, saw Waikiki Beach, and visited a General Store. Evidently, the Cape Disappointment lighthouse is the oldest lighthouse still in use in the United States.
I was pretty tired after the park, so I was glad for the 45 minute car ride back to Seaside. Once back in Seaside, we went to this store that sells sweatshirts for $12.99. I was amazed at the selection! Val, Steph, and I all bought sweatshirts.
We wore the sweatshirts tonight when we went to Cannon Beach. We ate at Bill’s Tavern. Steph and I got the homemade root beer. I must not have very sophisticated tastes because I’d take a good Sam’s Choice root beer over Bill’s any day of the week! All of us save Beth had burgers . . . and they were really tasty.
Nate wanted to run on the beach, so he did that while we girls got coffee, this time at Bella Espresso (which is where I’m posting this blog from). Steph thought the hot chocolate she got there was some of the best she’d ever had.
We met Nate at Haystack Rock, then we built a fire on the beach. We made s’mores and Jiffy Pop, sang songs, talked, and laughed. It was a great way to end the day!
Beth starting our fire. A mother and daughter bought us lighter fluid in exchange for watching their wood while they went to buy lighter fluid for themselves.
Nate making our Jiffy Pop. The instructions specifically said, "Do not use over an open fire."