THE TREES OF MYSTERY



Danielle and I took a road trip from Portland to the Oregon coastline, through the California Redwoods, ending in San Francisco. Danielle is one of my best friends and also my travel buddy. We went to Southeast Asia together and she came on one of The Virgins tours. We drove the tour van across Canada and down the Pacific Northwest to Las Vegas, then back to New York. We basically thrifted our way back to Manhattan. So fun. Moving along...

We drove through 300+ miles of pristine woods filled with hokey, anti-climatic attractions that were erected in the 50s and 60s. Smokey the Bear, Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, Bigfoot, Paul Bunyan, and Johnny Appleseed all have major territory in these parts. Also spotted: Sea Lions, Deer, birds galore, and ajillionty kinds of woodland creatures. We intended to thrift down the coast but we turned into crystal-hugging earth lovers instead.
We started out in Portland where we visited my little brother, a neurobiologist nobigdeal. Me? What do I do? Oh, I write funny stuff in exchange for money. Sorry MomnDad! Portland was great. I had to drink lots of warm milk to ease the ulcers caused by the nonstop white dreads and comfort-footwear sightings, but it was worth it.

New York homeys Elizabeth Spiridakis aka White Lightning, Marissa Kaiser, Jill Meisner, and Chris Roberts - my old intern at Vice (who is now running Vice Music) - were all in town. At night we mostly went to bars, drank, relaxed, and visited the Max Fish of Portland. But more importantly we went to the greatest strip club ever invented by man called Sassy's. Need I say more? No. But the highlights were 1) they only played 80's karaoke songs and 2) they served Miller High Life. Just discovered the Champagne of Beers last month after being one of those people who only orders Microbrews (I know, so douchey) and guess what? It's fucking DELICIOUS. It is a true fact that the petite bottles were designed for surfer chicks* which explains why - when it's Miller Time - I just want to sit on a beach and have a bonfire. Sadly for you we didn't take any social pictures, but if you're into trees get ready for some crucial foliage shots. Let's get to it, shall we?

First order of business: go see the Sea Lions. This is the largest sea cave in the world and all I can say is that it's extremely cool. You take an elevator 300 ft below the Pacific Coast Highway into a dark, wet cavern (go ahead and make your dumb little vagina joke here) and the Sea Lions are like RIGHT THERE. It smells awful and their bark is super loud, but you get to see all the action up close. There was whale-watching too, but no dice.






Next we stopped in a little fishing village somewhere:

Everything was closed at 5pm on a Sunday. No one in sight, just us. Kind of eerie.

Earth, Wind & Hair






Again, more mystical, roadside hippie "art." Time to count some sheep.



Goodnight Moon. Goodnight Trannyman.



Our lodge was in back of a trailer park. This guy was right outside our room catching views.


Lots of cool old trucks and California muscle cars along the way:


We got some coffee and drove down the coast until we finally arrived at the Enchanted Forest...


50 ft Paul Bunyan and Babe



(molesting)

This was all one Redwood that split into five trees midway up, and the Okies/Arkies/Goldminers/settlers/whoever decided it was a miracle, built an outdoor church pulpit in it, and called it the Shrine Tree.





Took a ride to the top of the mountain for some panoramics...












The wood sculptures were so l-a-m-e!

SUPER DUPER SNUPER STUPESDER

"Cookey - the World's Fastest Waiter" Okeyyyyy.....



Horrid rendition of Okies who migrated West shaving and cutting their hair. Looks like dudes axing face to me.

hobbits



I liked this guy. He was sort of serene. There were tons more but I'll spare you.

Next it was time for the TREES OF MYSTERY gift shop.

Well helloooo there lil guys! Just look at you. You guys are genius. I know. I know I took three hundredy million photos of you, but I'm only going to post a few because we have to get to the rest of my tale. You guys are looking epic though...



How bout you guys get off your wizard wall and get into my kitchen. Let's do it you're coming with me.

And this is what girls' dreams look like:



If you're into crystal-laden wizard jewelry, friendship bracelets, lumberjack-themed snow globes, and wood-carved animalia, this is the road trip for you. Americana galorezzz!

Lots of log cabin lodges and gift shops everywhere between the Oregon border and Eureka

tree house

My DREAMRIDE was parked out front. I lingered around to see if I could talk to the owner about swapping some well-scripted jokes and a half-finished book I whipped up in my lab back in Los Angeles in exchange for the vehicle. No dice.

thrillsvilles
we turned into full on balls-to-the-wall tourists. this is like 1% of the corny shit we did. everywhere we went a 30 minute photo shoot ensued.


These "chainsaw sculptures" were stupes x ajillionty thousand times stupes


We barely made it to the last ten open minutes of the Chandler Tree. I drove through this with my parents, little brother and my older sister when I was wee. It seemed smaller and less exciting this time around.


Drove an hour through insanely windy roads in the Falls to catch the last bit of light. Made it! This was taken at 9:30pm. This view was amazing in real life. Looks drab here.

Westport - sleepy little seaside town. Everything was closed by 10, even the one hotel. No stores, no bars.



Silver skies, black sand, grey cliffs, white fog, zero humans anywhere. It was so romantic I got pregnant.



* lie