Category: Business and Travel

business camping

Biking & Kinetic Sculptures

Business and Travel

So I’ve been thinking a lot lately about camping lately.

I used to camp a lot. Tent camping, I’m talking about.
I lived on the west coast of United States, and I would go with my family tent camping all over the state. Before I had kids I would go camping with my husband.

I remember one two week camping trip we did on the lost coast area of Northern California. We camped in Humboldt State Park. The park was in an area of redwood forest—spectacular towering trees that meant that even in the summer, the campsites were cooled by the perpetual shade.
We had mountain bikes and we did a lot of mountain biking during that camping trip. One day we took the bikes on a trail ride. It was a spectacular ride that took us on a track high up into the mountains where we enjoyed spectacular views. I worked up a giant appetite, and when we got back to the campsite, I wolfed down an entire bag of Fritos corn chips.
In the middle of the night, I could tell that eating all those corn chips was a big mistake. My stomach was rolling. I told my husband that I thought I was going to lose them.

He unzipped the 14 tent flaps between me and the outside in like ten seconds, and not a minute too soon. As soon as the flaps were back, I lunged for the opening and puked every last Frito right outside the tent. So that is my final memory of that bike ride.
There was a little town called Ferndale right on the coast. We would drive over there and just walk around the town. It was a town full of Victorian building and a large artisan community.
There was a little theater and one night of our camping trip we went to a production in that little theater. After we went to the play we drove back to our campsite and crawled into our tent and went to sleep.

While we were in Ferndale, one of the local artists told us about an annual race that the people of the area have. It started in a neighboring town and ended in Ferndale. It was a race of vehicles that people had to design and build and power only with humans, and the vehicles had to go across sand, mud, hills, a river, concrete, and over the bay.

It was called the World Championship Great Arcata to Ferndale Cross Country Kinetic Sculpture Race. Now I guess it’s called the Kinetic Grand Championship, or the Triathlon of the Art World.
Anyway we got to see a warehouse-type building where a whole bunch of these kinetic sculpture vehicles were stored. Some of them were twenty feet long and eight feet high. They really were amazing to see, even just in that building. It would have been fascinating to see them actually racing!

home

Atlanta, I don’t love you

Business and Travel

Road Trip Gone Wrong

Drove up to Tennessee last weekend.

When I put the route into my GPS, it said the trip would take ten hours. Hit some button or something, and then it said the trip would take 11 hours. So I wasn’t sure how long it would take but I knew I needed to plan the whole day for it.

Decided to leave at 7 and figured I’d get there maybe by 6 or 7 that night, which would be 5 or 6 Tennessee time, since it’s in Central time.
I left at 7 but decided to go by WaWa and get a breakfast sandwich and coffee for the way out of town. Baaaaaaad idea!

What was I thinking?

The WaWa is in Kissimmee (Where Disney is), so to get there I had to go through morning work traffic on 192 heading into Kissimmee, and that put me at 8 am before I even got on the turnpike to begin my trip!

I totally did not think that one through. But I decided not to stress about it. My daughter was waiting for me in Tennessee, but it wasn’t like I had a hard deadline to make.

I knew I wanted to make it to Atlanta and go through not at lunch time or during rush hour. I thought I had that pretty much nailed.

Hit the Georgia border and the rains began. And the construction. And the alternate routes.

Getting through Georgia and the Atlanta area took HOURS.

Here are a couple of tips you might find helpful.

I kept getting rerouted, which actually had its benefits because the rerouting took me on back roads that were really beautiful. Of course all the rest of the traffic was rerouting, too, so there were a lot of us taking the back roads, but I guess at the end of the day, we saved time doing that.

The Atlanta area was stop and go, and there was heavy construction and it was just pouring. At one point the car in front of me braked suddenly, and I thought for sure I was going to rear-end it. My foot had the brake pedal crammed to the floor and I was still coming up to the car waaaaay too fast.

I was in the left lane, so I veered off, but as I passed the car, I heard a big bang, and I knew for sure that I had hit it. I was like, DANG!!!  You’ve got to be kidding me!

I pulled over and stopped, but the other car never pulled over. Instead, two other cars pulled over. The front guy jumped out, checked his bumper, gave the second guy a thumbs up, and they both pulled back onto the road and disappeared.

No one else pulled over. I was mystified. I got back on the road and then saw my passenger side mirror. It had folded in and the mirror part was shattered. That must’ve been the bang: the mirror must’ve hit the other car and then folded in with such force that the mirror part whooped out and hit the window and shattered.

Later I saw that the wheel cover had also come off and there were some light scratches on that side of the vehicle. Bummer about the mirror, but I was super grateful to have gotten off that easy!

Finally made it to Cookeville around 8 p.m. Long day, but I made it.

road trip to tennessee