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  • Writer's picturestephanieraffelock

Sort of, Almost, Not Quite Landing in Ashland, Oregon Chronicles

Silver Falls State Park

Day three of the drive from Colorado to Oregon got prettier with each passing mile. The high Nevada desert gave way to California cotton woods growing along the farmer’s ditches, and pastures stretching their long, green fingers out into the land. Blue skies and bright sun followed us through California and up to the Oregon border.

In the movies the young couple might have started this day with tender anticipation. But two slightly crisp around the edges, curmudgeonly 60-year-old bed fellows began instead with “why the f*&K can’t I get onto our website? Do you know what is going on with these morons?” A morning walk and caffeine helped us load up the cars and put it in perspective. We will never know the “morons” behind the scenes of the internet company upon which we have built our website, and even in the most exciting of times and adventures, I expect that they will continue to annoy, albeit anonymously, from time to time…a conspiracy just waiting to happen one fine spring day.

I must admit that pretty landscape makes for a less stressful drive. My foot felt a little less heavy on the pedal today inasmuch as I was drinking in the images the lead to the portal marked “new adventure.” We came upon towns with quaint main streets: Susanville is a little California town that I imagine was named after a beloved mother or daughter. Weed on the other hand was either named after the television show, the crop grown there, or maybe someone really just thought the place was a bunch of weeds and thus named it so. I like my version better, however.

We rolled into Ashland around 1:30 in the afternoon, sweaty and excited. Chicken wings and Caesar salad from the Ashland Food Co-op was lunch. If not for the beauty of this little town, I would move here just for the chicken wings at the food co-op.

We decided to see how our house looked before we checked into the hotel and it did not disappoint. Doing a remodel long distance doesn’t allow you to participate in the day-to-day nuance of the process, so we have had to trust and it looks as though our trust was well placed. We wandered around checking out all the work that has been done these past few months and talking about where to place furniture.

Our stuff won’t get here until later in the month. In the meantime, we will visit the house everyday while the finishing touches are put in place. Tomorrow we are hoping to sleep in and then make a trip to the nursery for some tomato plants and for flowers to put by the front door. In another week or so we will have the fun of getting moved in. I hope we don’t start the day out with the conspiratorial Internet company. But if we do, I will try to remind myself that the texture of life is created by moments rude and sublime, frustrating and celebratory. No one ever believes the sappy characters in the movies anyway, do they? Those characters never drove for three days and slept in hotel rooms with a Labrador retriever who barked at the slightest noise and kept waking them us–thus the crispy around the edges–did they? Life happens amid our plans, and isn’t it grand. Welcome to Ashland.

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