i was up at several ridiculous hours this morning, worried that i'd sleep through my alarm and miss my coach connection back to portland. happily, after waking at 2am, 5.30, 6.15 and 6.30 i bit the bullet and decided to get up early anyway. i had my gear set out for today, put my dirty clothes into the front pocket of my luggage (where i'll hopefully remember it is when i come to do laundry tonight) and hoofed it down to the astoria transit centre. my favourite coffee place hadn't yet opened, so i stopped in at a different place where, as it turned out, i paid for a rather inferior coffee with burned milk. i couldn't be bothered going back, so i continued on my way, meeting a similarly paranoid fellow waiting for the same coach.
patrick had been cycling down the pacific coast when he'd had a bit of a fall and bunged-up his knee. he'd made alternative arrangements to get down to the california coast and meet up with family but as we chatted and got to know one another we slipped easiy into a discussion about faith and where God has led us and seemed to be leading us now. he had fallen into the family tradition of studying engineering and while doing very well with the practical side, found the maths of it to be rather hard going. as providence would have it, he met a lovely young woman on a river rafting weekend who was studying psychology but was also seriously considering mission work. she prompted him several times about this line of thinking for the future and as he investigated it he found that God was opening up opportunities for him to pursue it. he's now attending a Bible college and i wish him the best of luck. i'll be sending him an email and i hope we can stay in touch, since i'm very keen to find out how he goes and where God takes him (he's hoping it'll be tokyo...).
i've checked into nw portland hostel, i can't get into my room for a couple of hours, can't use the laundry until around 5, so i've made myself comfy down in a common room, charging my phone and ipod, doing some chores online.
for my friends at work, i stopped into a little bookshop in astoria called lucy's books and snagged a hardcopy of their newsletter. it's a funky little shop and i bought a great book on the history of astoria from there. (i finished that barack obama book - did i say that already...?) they were very friendly people and have a lot of author events - maybe worth sharing ideas with...
i did a scant amount of the goonies and kindergarten cop sightseeing, although i did get my photo taken by some tourists from nevada, whose photo i took in return, most of y sightseeing was just looking around. i'm sure i mentioned that i spent time at the maritime museum in astoria but the entire town is like one big maritime museum. the history that i'm reading actually includes some maps and walking tours that you can do and while i didn't use any (too late into the piece) it would be a great impetus to do other stuff on a future visit. astoria turned out to be far more enjoyable than i expected.
oh, by the way, i went bowling at the lower columbia, or l.c. bowl - this is where chunk is when he sees his friends through the window riding their bicycles and he ends up mashing his hotdog on the glass. (i think... that's how i remember it...) anyway, i bowled two games and had a good old chinwag with the woman staffing the counter. i bowled 194 and 142 and was very pleased with that.