Day 4: Olympia to Belfair
Rolled out of Olympia at 8:10 AM. I took a photo of the eco-friendly phone book before I left. It made me think about designers.
In Portland, there’s a lot of talk in the design community about sustainability. Years ago I used to think that designers were elitists who thought they held some kind of magic power over society. These days I can see how influential and important it is to be a designer.
Cutting the phone book in half and calling it “eco” might be a way to use less materials. Perhaps newspapers and magazines should feature smaller “eco” versions of their publications.
It was cloudy and cold and it stayed that way almost all day. Today’s challenge was figuring out where to stay and which route to take. Because I’m traveling into a more woodsy and less populated area, I wanted to make certain that a bed would be available.
I could have continued up Highway 101 into Hoodsport or up Route 3 towards Bremerton. Either route had a hotel at the half way point. By 10 AM only one hotel was answering the telephone and so I paid the $20 rate difference to know I wouldn’t be camping in the woods without a tent.
On my way up I stopped in Allyn and ate lunch. Gwenn has been telling me I don’t have to ride straight through but I lose momentum from stopping. Don’t you want to nap after you eat?
It rained on and off throughout the ride so my camera mostly stayed hidden in the bag behind me. The hotel I’m in is the nicest one I’ve stayed at throughout my trip.
I put the TV on to relax. However, it didn’t work. Some country music star with a house as big as a high school was showing off his party crib and rambling about being a red white and blue collar American.
Whenever I watch cable television it makes me want to be a motorcycle building, ghost hunting, best selling, great dancing, mansion owning, top model award winning chef million dollar American Idol.
I called my mother. My grandfather has been placed under hospice care in New Jersey. She asked if I was alone and then asked why I always have to do these crazy things. I wanted my mom to get it. I wish my grandfather could get it. But they don’t and they won’t. Or maybe this whole protest is just not clear enough.
Good ideas are simple solutions. They just make sense and they SOLVE a problem, like this seat handle from the hotel toilet.
When we hung up the telephone, the sun was out so I took a walk to get something to eat. It was rush hour. Cars were lined up as far as the eye could see.
I took a photo of a discarded toy and wondered how it got there. Did a kid throw it out the window? Did the parent? Are those two squad cars that passed coming back for me? They immediately turned around. One of the cars pulled into the parking lot to my right but I didn’t look. I just kept on walking.
The officer got out of the car and said, “Excuse me, can I speak to you a moment?”
I said, “sure” and turned back to walk toward her.
“You don’t have any weapons,” she said as she tilted her head and stopped in her tracks. I removed my hands from my pockets to show her my palms.
“You were over at the bank weren’t you.”
“Huh?” I asked.
“I’ve seen the video. You’re the guy who has been taking pictures of the plates,” she said.
I said that I had just arrived.
She asked if I was staying at the motel and asked how long I’d been in town.
“Um, since like one o’clock,” I told her.
She asked for my ID and I gave it to her. It’s so routine. The police copy down your name, address and possibly your DL license number. I’ve had this happen to me many times before. I have that look. Allowing the officer to gather your personal information is a good way to cooperate and avoid confrontation. Then I thought about you reading this blog.
“After that, can I get a photo of us?” I asked. Her backup had just arrived and I thought maybe he’d snap a picture.
“No,” she said.
I took my camera lens cap off. She was writing my name down.
I don’t remember the exact words, but she pretty much ordered me not to take her photo.
“I won’t take you, I’m just going to show your hands,” I told her. (It’s possible I said “shoot your hands,” which would certainly be a bad choice of words.) She held her notebook up as if to pull it away from a sibling.
I snapped the photo. It all happened very quickly.
“You’re about to get jacked up here!” she scolded. Her backup was about ten feet behind her. I put the lens cap back on and said, “We’re in public, I know it’s okay for me to take photos.”
She finished copying my information and handed back my ID. Her backup (he had a separate car) came closer and kind of smiled. I asked what was happening. She said that someone was taking pictures of bank employee license plates and that they’ve had several bank robberies recently.
“And I look like the guy,” I said.
The other officer said they were just doing their job, which they were. I asked where the pizzeria is located. They gave me directions but it was about a mile down the road. She shook my hand and we all went on our way. Lucky for them! It was almost looking like I was gonna have to pull some Rambo sh*t!
Oh, and in case you don’t believe, here’s the photo:
I ended up walking to the QFC (not KFC) and getting some very expensive groceries.
I reused my plastic fork from Safeway in Centralia. Too bad the pasta salad came in a plastic container.