Sea Sick

Hello again.

Since we last caught up we have been navigating the Oregon Coast between Pacific City and Yachats. We are just now at the phase of looking through the very limited rentals (seriously, there were a whopping two in Lincoln City three days ago.) We are working it out.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

The ocean draws us in more and more everyday – or it might be the moon and the pull of the tides. We had a nice 4th in Newport. We did some great touristy things while we were there including the wax museum and the Ripley’s Believe It or Not museum (virtually unchanged in 20 years). We ate at the same restaurant we ate at the first night of our honeymoon. They let us sit on the deck even though it was so cold that they had deck heaters and brought us blankets.

Cody by the heater at dinner (above) Exhibits from Ripley’s and the Wax Museum (below)

If you have been following the changes to the “Hyslop Spotting” portion of our blog you can see that it really is, if you will pardon the pun, fluid. We have decided not to go inland. We came for the sea and we have decided that hell or high water, there will be . . . well, water. So it is ride or die! We are all in.

Cody’s head in a jar at the Wax Museum

Now that I have covered the incidentals I want to tell you about an experience I had the other night. To be clear up front this was NOT the night we ate at the beautiful honeymoon spot. After a day of decision making and a million questions about the nature of our life from here on out, Cody and I were running ragged and decided to grab a burger and watch a movie in the hotel. Just relax and regroup.

Everything was going okay, we were online exploring living options and reviewing pictures from the Oregon Coast Aquarium (see above) when the entire middle section of my body seized like the squid who took down the Nautilus had grabbed a hold of me. That creature was crushing the hull, the crew was lost. With my history of abdominal nightmares we were more than a little concerned.

As the evening progressed I found myself camping out closer and closer to the bathroom. The undulating waves outside our hotel room set the meter for the waves of cramping and releasing washing over my body. Without putting too fine a point on it, I felt like all of the magma in the earth’s core was being raised by the sea and forced out through my body.

This went on for several hours. It was as if I had angered Poseidon by keeping too much water in my body. The God of the Sea was taking back his share, and he did not ask nicely. As darkness fell across the ocean and the shore I began to find moments of rest. I eased down onto my rack and closed my eyes wishfully. That is when the great Kraken rose from the depths to sear my esophagus with the worst heartburn I have had outside of pregnancy.

I teetered out of bed and located the alka seltzer, preferred heartburn relief of old men everywhere. I wrapped myself in a blanket sat in front of the open balcony glass door and stared out into the blackness of the water and deep into the night. The sound of the breaking waves daring me to move too much or too fast. My equilibrium was shot. While I sat their praying for a sneaker wave to jump the four floors up to our room with enough strength to pull me out to sea, I noticed a dim bobbing light on the horizon.

I stared for a while, not sure what I was seeing. After a surprising amount of time in one place, given the events of the evening, I realized that it was a ship out there on that horizon line, lights on, and weathering some mighty swells. Instantly I connected with those sailors. Out there in the heaving blackness, the rise and fall of the unforgiving depths deciding in each moment whether or not to swallow the vessel whole. All the while the crew of the vessel was able to do little more than ride it out. Rocking cautiously in my seat I felt an, admittedly unearned, solidarity with that crew.

The light on the beach underscores what appears to be the moon but is actually a ship at sea

Finally, in the early hours of the morning the seas mellowed. The rush of the tides became a gentle and predictable cycle and just before the sliver of light hit the horizon I returned to bed. It took most of the next day for me to restore my vessel. I am much better now. I also have some thoughtful suggestions for menu items at certain restaurants in coastal burger joints if you are ever curious.

My night in the torrent of tides both internal and external has been a pretty a good reminder of how far Cody and I have come. Not just physically but also as people, together, Adventure Buddies. We are determined to build our life upon the sea, now more than ever I think. What we are doing here is good for us. The seas are obviously not smooth but neither are they as daunting as they once were. Mariners used to mark unknown waters on maps with all sorts of beasties and the phrase “Here there be dragons.” These are most certainly uncharted seas but we are choosing to mark the map we make with “Here there be Hyslops.”



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