Hunkered down in Chehalis

Saturday, Nov. 13, 2010
Friday morning, under cold, sunny skies, after getting a late start due to mapping (Writing down all the turn-by-turn directions from Google Maps is time-consuming! Try it yourself: Get [Bicycle] directions in Google Maps from Olympia to Chehalis. See?) and a brake adjustment at Bike Stand (Great bike shop, by the way, if you're in Olympia.), I set out for Chehalis.

Oh, but first I took a photo of Dana and Sadie out in front of their house:
(Reminds me of a Lands' End catalog photo.)

Dana was absolutely terrific. I swear there must be a protocol that all hosts must abide by! Each one has been so gracious, accommodating and friendly. Amazing.

I'd originally planned on going 63 miles to Castle Rock but when I rolled out of Olympia at noon-ish, I decided I'd find a place to stop in Chehalis, about half the distance to Castle Rock. Besides, I was feeling a bit spent from my 70+ mile ride the day before. I'm still not in very good shape and my bottom hasn't toughened up yet.

Passing through Centralia, I stopped to get a photo of Campbell Chrysler/Jeep/Dodge, which was my grandfather's, then uncle's car dealership:.

Don't know who owns it now, but I've fond memories of visiting my grandpa at this dealership 30-some years ago. Back then it was Campbell Chevrolet/Cadillac.

Seems odd, me being sort of anti-car, that I have family in the car business. The other "Campbell" dealership is my other uncle and cousins' Campbell Nelson VW/Nissan dealership in Edmonds.

Truth be told, I have a love-hate relationship with cars; I love driving, love road-trips, love tooling down the road with a cup of coffee while listening to This American Life, love the new-car smell, love classic cars, etc. At the same time I hate what cars do to us; isolating us from each other––perpetuating the chronic social isolation in our society, enabling us to avoid exercise in the form of walking or bicycling, contributing to our laziness and obesity. Too, I hate what cars do to the environment; polluting the air, scarring the landscape with freeways and gas stations and drive-thrus and Aurora Ave. and Walmart parking lots and bridges and tunnels and parking garages and scrap yards and Jiffy Lubes and Car Toys and used-car lots, contaminating the ground and water with oil and gasoline and anti-freeze and millions of tons of tiny tire bits (Ever think about how much tire you've lost when your tires are worn down? And where do those millions of tons of rubber and petroleum crap go?), creating constant noise (How increasingly rare it is to be somewhere where the ubiquitous white noise of cars and trucks is not audible.)

Sometimes I fantasize about what a car-less culture would look and sound and feel like. Would people ride horses? Would there be huge indoor or sheltered bicycle-parking areas? Covered walking and biking paths everywhere? More food vendor carts and restaurants with storefront seating? Thinner, fitter people?

Anyway, I arrived at the Relax Inn in Chehalis and decided, partly because of the good rates and the clean condition of the motel, that I'd spend an extra day here letting my body and butt recuperate.

So Saturday (today) I slept in, had a late breakfast, mapped my route to Longview, bought groceries at Safeway, watched Raising Arizona and updated the blog. Tomorrow morning I'll leave for Longview, ~46 miles away and the last stop before leaving Washington.

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