Wacky Weather Makes For Memorable Trip


Sometime during the summer, Inland Empire Girl gave us this sibling assignment.

Share a memorable family vacation memory that involved all three of us.

In my quest to complete my sibling assignments, mine is below. You can find IEG’s here, and RP’s here.

One of my memories is of a trip IEG, PKR and I took to Eugene on our way to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival in Ashland. This would have been in the summer of 1987 or 1988, I think.

PKR and I were living in Glendive, Montana, but were in Kellogg for the month of July since that was my vacation month.

IEG lived in Kennewick, Washington. RP lived in Eugene. RP had attended the Ashland Festival many times, and we were very interested in attending.

It was toward the end of July, as we traveled from the Tri-Cities area of Washington to Eugene, the temperature was near 100 degrees. IEG’s car had no air conditioning, so it was very unpleasant.

We arrived in Eugene to spend the night at RP’s apartment. I remember walking to a Chinese restaurant, and they had had some problems that day, so no air conditioning, and no ice for the water.

RP’s apartment was very warm that evening as well.

Actually, RP’s part in this trip is very small, unfortunately, because he didn’t go to Ashland with us. I think he had been down earlier in the summer, so IEG, PKR and I got in the car and headed south of Eugene toward Ashland. Temperature reading: 103 degrees. No air conditioning. Vinyl seats.

We had never been in this part of Oregon before, so it was an adventure for us. We stopped and drove through a Safari place to look at animals, but they were a bit lethargic in the heat. I think we did have some ostriches peck at our car window, though.

At one point, we stopped at a rest area to put water on our faces so we wouldn’t pass out from the heat.

For those of you familiar with my sister and I, the fact we did a lot of visiting in the car will not surprise you; and PKR sat in the backseat, not saying a whole lot.

This changed when we arrived in Ashland. It had been a long, hot drive. We were about to pass out. As we approached the town, IEG gave us the option of heading straight for the exit where our motel was, that had a pool, or we could take the first exit and drive through town and see what the town looked like.

At this suggestion, my wonderful husband did have something to say.

“Let’s just go to the motel.”

As he saw it, that was the most logical course to take. Why remain in the hot, sweaty car longer than necessary when we could be in the motel pool in less than 10 minutes. So to the motel we went.

The weather made our trip very interesting. We saw a production of “Macbeth” in the outdoor theater one evening, and bats were flying around the stage, and there was thunder and lightening during the production. That night the lightening set off fires throughout the area, so we woke up to smoke.

As we left Ashland, we decided, again, to be adventurous and drive home via Crater Lake. We thought it would be a beautiful side trip to take to look at the lake.

Well, that didn’t happen. Now, just to refresh your memory, we had been in over 100 degree weather days earlier. Then we experienced thunder and lightening storms, and forest fires. It was the end of July.

When we arrived at Crater Lake, we were unable to see the lake because the visibility was so bad because it was SNOWING so hard. I kid you not.

It was a crazy trip, but very enjoyable. Someday PKR and I hope to return to Ashland to see some plays again.

1 comment:

Nita Jo said...

The snow at Crater Lake had me laughing. Reminded me of our family trip to ND. We got a little lost and delayed for our side trip to Devil's Tower. We got there after dark! Couldn't even get a picture, but we could see the outline (barely) against the night sky. Thanks for sharing your travel stories!