Monday, August 11, 2014

Slugs and the Scoots....are you sure you want to read this?




Early morning comes and early morning goes as we wait to leave.  Otis woke up in the middle of the night with the scoots and we aren't willing to pull a Mitt Romney and strap him to the roof of the car (remember that?).  

I give Otis a doggie-sized dose of pepto-bismol and while we wait to see if he starts to feel better, Hubs finds several mongo slugs crawling around our site.  


When they bump into something, they retract their eyes by pulling them inward, down into the stalk.  It is really weird to see them push their eyes back out, like a long sock being turned inside out.  


Otis is as empty as he is going to be and we set sail.  I try sitting in the back seat to keep the dogs from their usual frantic pacing and yapping, which only helps for a few minutes.  

We stop at a Camping World, discover how overpriced everything is, and keep moving with our wallets unscathed.  

Otis then barfs all over the inside of the tube, grossing Murray out as they both stand on tiptoes as far to the sides of the tube as they can.  We pull over and Hubs holds the pugs while I remove the tube and sluice water through it to get everything cleaned up. 

It has only taken 5,000 miles of yipping and whining, but Otis finally gets his wish and sits on my lap for the rest of the trip today.  Eastern Washington is experiencing a heat wave and we want to get through it as quickly as possible.  I always envisioned Washington to be green and lush, but soon I come to believe it is the ugliest, most barren land I have ever seen.  Miles and miles of scrubby brush and sharp, unpleasant land lay between us and the cool shade of the western forests.  Even Moses Lake seems shriveled and miserable in the blistering heat.  We drive and drive as the thermometer rises and rises.  A series of long inclines rise before us and roadside signs warn of radiator boil-over, advising the turning off of air conditioning.  Our thermometer hits 106.  We stop at a rest area and carry the dogs to the small patch of watered grass to keep their feet from burning on the asphalt.  


I envision our tires melting to the road surface as we keep plugging.  Shocks of bright green come into view and purple hills begin to ripple the surface of the land.  


Finally we reach Yakima, the largest city in the area.  

We find a Walmart where we pick up groceries, scarf down lunch, and contemplate spending the night, but it is unbearably hot and there is no shade.  What I would love to find is a campsite with water!  We keep driving and follow the first brown camping sign we see.  (Brown is usually state-run campgrounds and blue is usually private campgrounds.)  

There it is!  I hear water!  The fee is $14/night, but we are all exhausted and hot, and splashing around in a river sounds like the perfect cure.  There is only one other camper here so we have our choice of spots and pick one in shade just a few steps from the water.  


Otis is still experiencing troubles but is happy to be stationary and takes great pleasure in wading up to his knees, chasing small fish, and turning over interesting-looking rocks.

The cliffs surrounding our camp have two distinct rock formations.  Lower on the walls there are large columns, very much like those found at Devils Tower.  



Higher up the face, the columns become thinner and jumbled, taking on a furry appearance from far away. 


I would imagine this would have been very exciting to see formed, but probably on the warm side.

As evening passes, Otis's problems aren't getting any better and we resolve to find a vet in the morning.  Thunder rumbles in the distance, but the clouds pass over without spilling a drop.




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