Oregon On The Run

Wayside Park along Umpqua River on Hyw 38

Sometimes its good to plan a vacation in advance and have all the details laid out, maybe its less stress free. But other times a little more adventure and spontaneity is called for and you can just get in the car and drive somewhere on the spur of the moment or maybe even take a different road that all of a sudden presents itself.

And so, a few days ago, when I was driving up the Oregon Coast headed back home to Portland, that’s what happened to me. I had planned to go to Florence and take the highway over to Eugene. But then, while in Reedsport, I saw a sign that said, “Drain, Eugene” and before I knew what I was doing I had turned off Highway 101 and was driving east on Highway 38.

That’s when I slowed down to think this out. This wasn’t part of my plan. What was I doing? Then I made the decision to go for it and see where it took me. After all I had my trusty GPS so I couldn’t get lost.

Almost immediately I knew I had made the right decision (or whatever made the decision for me) because I found myself in one of Oregon’s wonderlands. The Umpqua River on one side and deep woods on the other. Plus it was someplace I had never been. That always spells excitement and adventure for me.

On the way to Eugene I explored the roadside parks along the river, perused the small towns – got gas, an ice cream cone, checked out the historic markers and buildings and even caught a yard sale where I bought a lantern plant for my garden. It was a beautiful day and the people I met were friendly.

When you stop to think about it, we never truly know where life will lead us, even with a map or GPS. Surprises, good or bad, can await us around any corner or just over the next hill. I think we all have an inner guide and when I listen to mine I’ve noticed good things are bound to happen.

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