We left the crisp cool air of Trinidad, California early the next day–Friday–our targeted day to hit Oregon. We woke up excited to get started, as the Redwoods were our first scheduled stop. The drive along the California coast was gorgeous with the Pacific Ocean on one side of the highway and the beautiful, wooded areas on the other. We pulled into the park entrance to see a few elk just laying in the grass resting. They had no fear of us, but there was no way we were going to approach them. They looked at us as curiously as we looked at them.
We had gotten to the park early, so we watched the elk for a while until the park opened. When a ranger did come, the first order of business was to raise the American flag and they asked Dani to assist. Since her Girl Scout days, the raising or presenting the flag of the United States was something very special and dear to both of us, so it was touching to have her help raise the flag over one of our National Parks for the day.
The first thing we noticed when entering the forest were the amazing, majestic trees that surrounded us. We couldn’t wait to start to explore. The forest was enormous. It was quiet, green, and peaceful. It’s like seeing the ocean for the first time–it made us realize just how small we actually are. Words can’t express the feeling while there, and pictures cannot do it justice. It is hands down one of my most favorite spots in the entire world. I have to be honest and admit that I did not want to leave the peace and quiet of that beautiful forest. In fact, if I could live there I would. But, Oregon was waiting on us. Dani had to sign in for her apartment and check into the aquarium.
We drove further up the coast, both of us oohing and ahhing at the beautiful view of the rocky coast line and the small towns we drove through. We noticed the chill in the air and the slight drizzle the further north we drove. Finally, we came to the Oregon state line! We stopped to take pictures and Dani even straddled the line and had one foot in California and the other in Oregon. We had finally made it!
We were close to our destination and closer still to my solo flight leaving out on Monday. Seeing where Dani would be living the next few months made me so happy for her–so much to explore and see and do.
It was absolutely gorgeous. But, she would be far, far, far away. I tamped down the dread of saying goodbye and decided to be happy, happy, happy. I was just going to concentrate on enjoying the current moment and treasuring each second.