Hey there folks! We have three days to catch up on!
We left the lovely park in Florence where we had spent two nights and made our way along the Siuslaw River to the 126. The views along this drive were gorgeous, we saw many small fishing boats out on the sun-lit waters in the early morning mist. We made it to Eugene a bit before mid-day and settled into a cozy space at Shamrock Village RV Park, which offered a scenic picnic area directly across the river from Springfield, OR. We watched the first of several freight trains we’d see go by in Eugene and splashed around on some rocks with the water-skeeters.
Exploring towards downtown we found Skinner Butte Park and its perfect kid’s play area, with a “frontier-town” playground and full array of slides, swings, monkey bars etc. Great for Zoe! We grabbed a bite of (delicious!) lunch at Cornucopia before meeting with my old friend from Cambria, Kyle. Yaaay!
After touring his cozy home and yard (and petting some sweet kitties) we all cruised back to the park for more Zoe-centric playtime. Remarkably, some other friends from SLO county, Robyn and Sean were staying in their home-on-wheels in Eugene, and met us at the park as well! After what had been a long day of playing and seeing friends we decided to go back to the trailer for bedtime. We had planned on leaving Eugene the next day, but…
After another night of no hot showers (and a couple other bugs), I decided it would be best while we were in a bigger city to take the RV in for some upgrades. I called several service centers to no avail; they were all booked-up for weeks on end! Quality Coach Services in Eugene came through and I, happily, agreed to bring in the rig that same morning! We quickly grabbed some supplies and clothes for the day and left our home-on-wheels at the shop for the time being. We met up with our friends Robyn and Sean again and another SLO county friend, Erin, for another great lunch at Cafe Studio One (living it up!). After a sunny playdate at nearby Westmoreland Park, I determined that the RV was getting some careful treatment and an order of new parts (super-duper AGM batteries for week-long future boondocking!) at the service center and that (although sleeping in the trailer on the lot was offered) it was time for a hotel night. We found a pet-friendly Best Western up the street from us and got comfortable, making full use of their heated pool and cable TV (Yaay Nickelodeon!!). We got some groceries and dinner for the night at the nearby organic grocery store and hit the hay partway through the Democratic debates — Zoe was just too sleepy after a long long day.
Waking up refreshed with hot baths and showers at the hotel, we tidied up, helped ourselves to complementary continental breakfast and strolled through the nearby U of O campus, home of the DUCKS (as Eugene and the surrounding area of Oregon has consistently reminded us), but more importantly to our daughter, home to a big dusty pile of leaves:
Packing up our hotel room, we headed out to the Cascades Raptor Center, south of the city a bit and definitely worth the drive! Zoe got to see falcons, hawks, kestrels, many owls and BALD EAGLES up way close! She loved copying bird sounds and poking her fingers through the cages (eek…), I greatly enjoyed filling my head with more helpful zoological facts and I couldn’t resist picking her up a small owl plushie from the gift shop.
Having a bit more time to spend wisely (not time to kill…) we visited the Valley River Center mall, which, being a mall and us being us, was absolutely not for us and had nothing of interest… but it did have escalators and Zoe loved them!!
Ending our foodist rampage, we tried BJ’s outside the mall. Tasty good food and Zoe loved throwing her crayons and napkins, and menu… fun times! After reuniting with our souped-up RV we hit the dusty road (literally) of the Territorial Hwy. I can’t say for certain why Apple Maps decided this was the fastest route (maybe in a smaller rig) but it was absolutely a beautiful sight, winding through backcountry, farm lands, very very small towns (Lorane, OR?) and along glorious deciduous (changing for Autumn!) foliage. Reconnecting with the 5 we picked up some speed, Zoe took a long-ish car nap (!) and we hit our destination, Tri City RV in Myrtle Creek a few hours before sundown. We unhitched, biked around the nearby area before settling into our cozy four-wheeled cottage for the night.
What will the morning bring? We’re thinking redwoods and CALIFORNIA! See you soon home state!
P.S. happy one-week Nomadiversary to ourselves! This little family is thriving and growing well on the road so far. Hooray!