Over the past ten days, I drove about 1,500 miles on the Pacific Coast Highway from Seattle to Rosarito, Baja California, Mexico, along with a side trip by air to La Paz down on the Sea of Cortez. It was frantic, frenetic, and great. I'm sure most people would hate the idea of being in a car for hours almost every day, but I love road trips, especially epic ones. For me they're exhilarating rather than stressful; stationary holidays most people would find relaxing, like a week in some idyllic resort, would render me catatonic with boredom. I've always preferred to wander, preferably alone and without a guide book, when traveling for pleasure. On New Year's Eve 2000 in London, in a massive crowd I got separated from my friends with no way to contact them or find where they would be that night, so instead I spent it meeting people, buying drinks, riding trains, grabbing a little sleep in odd places, getting in and out of trouble, poking around. I loved it. Back when USAir was a real airline and had cheap weekend deals to anywhere, I'd pick a city to go to and just wear my shoes out walking. Now air travel has degenerated into a security-ridden hassle that half the time doesn't even get you to your destination, but despite their best efforts even Homeland Security apparatchiks haven't managed to ruin the joy of spending a nice day driving somewhere far away chosen on a whim.
I have a million pictures and will try to post some as soon as I recover, but for right now let me say that the best part of the trip was the Oregon coast. Without question. Being a city dweller by choice, I am not the greatest fan of natural beauty, but nearly every mile from Astoria to Brookings was stunning. I get the impression that more people have seen Big Sur, so if you're one, for comparison's sake imagine views just as or perhaps even more dramatic, running on for hundreds of miles, and without either the hairpin turns or the long stretches of numbingly desolate road.
More soon. More sleep now.