Port Angeles, day 1

Today I drove out to Port Angeles, which was pretty uneventful. I’d been deliberating whether to deal with the stress of driving South on I-5 through Tacoma or the stress of dealing with the ferry to Bainbridge, and decided to just go whichever route Siri put me on. She ended up doing a third option, using the Kingston ferry, which ended up being both a very pleasant drive to the terminal (aside from a couple of near misses due to construction changing the lanes in unanticipated ways) and a much faster option. I guess Apple Maps knows the ferry schedule and is able to just like… figure out what’s the best at any given time? Neat.

The Kingston ferry is also a lot shorter than the Bainbridge one, and I got lucky enough to have a very good view of the trip from my car; the whole thing got recorded on my dashcam, as well, which is perfect for a music video (and cover song) I’m going to be making over the next few days for Song Fight!.

Anyway I guess it turns out that it’s not that I’m bad with driving, I just don’t do well in downtown or South Seattle.

Port Angeles isn’t quite like any town I’ve been in before. The downtown area makes me think of the nicer parts of Renton, except that everyone’s got Biden/Harris campaign materials up instead of Blue Lives Matter garbage. And then the residential sections are… sort of? like the more residential parts of the Fremont neighborhood of Seattle, except taking a wrong turn puts you into some very beautiful forest. The entire drive out here was lovely, aside from being stuck behind a going-too-slow-but-too-fast-to-pass-safely logging truck for a while.

I was surprised at how little there was to see from the highway in Sequim. I guess even though it’s a city, it’s so spread out and so far away from the highway that there’s just not much to see (aside from the Wal-Mart, anyway). Aside from Kingston and Port Angeles, and a brief rest stop in Gardiner, WA, my drive felt pretty much civilization-free.

When I arrived I found out that the host of the AirBnB was having a bit of a problem in that the previous guests were confused about their checkout time and hadn’t checked out yet — but also weren’t around or reachable by phone (as they were out hiking) and so the host was in a bit of a panic trying to deal with that. She had just gotten in touch with them when I’d arrived (and I’d arrived 15 minutes early anyway) and I said it was totally fine and I needed to get some lunch. So I went downtown and ate at a surprisingly hip gastropub which was very much like the one near my home in Seattle and was quite good. While I was having my lunch the host got in touch with me to let me know the place was ready, and as soon as I got back I was able to settle in pretty nicely.

A couple hours later, her wife and their daughter (who I am pretty sure is trans! or at least her voice had many trans signifiers) came by and wanted to make up for the checkin trouble with a gift card and an adorable kitten calendar to make sure there were “no hard feelings.” I said it absolutely wasn’t a problem (because it wasn’t!) but they still insisted I take it, so, hey, why not.

So far the only annoying thing that’s happened is it turns out that my dashcam formats its SD card in a way that a Mac can’t read it, so transferring the footage to my laptop turned out to be a bit more difficult than necessary. (It turns out that iOS can mount it, oddly enough, so I ended up using my iPad to send the files over Wi-Fi via Airdrop. That was pretty roundabout!)

Anyway. This AirBnB is quite lovely; it’s a “tiny house” (actually a small conventional house, I’d estimate it’s around 500 square feet and it’s definitely not a tiny house by Instagram/YouTube standards) and the owners have chickens so there are nice fresh eggs in the fridge. It’s not too far from downtown Port Angeles, either, and there’s plenty of little shops I want to check out. I should at least go to one of the grocery stores tonight so that I can get something for dinner tonight and some bread for breakfast tomorrow, or something.

Oh, also, it is incredibly quiet here, like, to the extent that until I turned on a fan my ears were ringing. I’d forgotten just how much background noise there is in Seattle, and how necessary it is to keep my congenital tinnitus from driving me nuts. (This was a problem I always had growing up in the suburbs of New Mexico too.)

Also after I ate at the gastropub I opted to just listen to the radio and of course the first station that came up on the tuner was CBC. Because you can literally see Canada from here (it’s just across the strait).

So far I’m feeling like I made some excellent choices.


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