Sunday, July 3, 2011

New Observations

It's about three weeks from when I arrived in Oregon and two weeks since I got here to Newport and I can say that I think I'm starting to get used to my life here. This is not just a place that I am visiting; it is my home for the summer. Every day I discover something new about Oregon. My senses are heightened and I keep scanning, scanning, scanning for the next new piece of interesting/ exciting information.
One of the things that I've noticed is the rather large logging presence here. It seems like everywhere I turn there's a lumber yard, logging truck, or tree clearing. Last week I went scouting for sites up the estuary for my internship. Up the road about 20 minutes we entered the small town of Toledo, Oregon. View Larger Map The main industry in the town is a paper mill. I was in awe as we drove passed the immense piles of wood chips awaiting their fate to be driven into the factory as a pile of wood and out as a pile of paper. The sweet smell of the paper mill drew me in; I'd love to get a tour of the place this summer. I am often conflicted by logging because on one hand I see jobs and homes and paper, while on the other hand I see habitats lost and a barren land on top of a hill that eerily reminds me of the destruction from the F4 tornadoes that came close to my hometown in Massachusetts a few short weeks ago.  At the very least, I think the loggers should be required to replant the forest instead of leaving it desolate atop a once green hill which it seems like they are doing already.
Kites flying in Lincoln City, Oregon
Most nights I am lulled to sleep by the sound of the lighthouse horn. Several people have told me that the Yaquina Bay lighthouse doesn't have a horn but I like the idea of believing that that is where the sweet sound is coming from. 
The Oregon coast is known for glassblowing and kite flying.  At the farmers markets here I notice the sweet smell of strawberries at what seems like every other stand. 

Enjoying my pear cider at Nana's Irish Pub
Friday night, some of my fellow Sea Granters and I decided to hit up the bars in the sleepy town of Newport The only problem was just that – it’s sleepy! And most places were closed by 9pm.  We really wanted to go check out the bar Bier One because we hear it’s the most happening place in town, but as we walked in at around 8:45pm (relatively early to be going out for drinks) they told us that we’d only have enough time to buy a drink and leave.   Instead we decided to try Nana’s Irish Pub.  Not being a big beer fan, I decided to try the pear cider. It was great!  My roommate, Nicole, and I were hungry so we ordered the baked brie appetizer. It was brie baked in crescent roll type bread and was served with apple slices, crackers, and a sweet sauce.  I thought it was the most random combination of things, but eaten together on the cracker, it was great! 

Sara Duncan - Drift Creek Falls
Saturday, we finally headed to the hike that I’ve been wanting to do in Lincoln City called Drift Creek Falls.  As I said in my first blog, waterfalls are one of my favorite things about Oregon.  This was a short three mile round trip hike though the lush green forests of Western Oregon.  We heard the rush of the water fall as we approached the suspension bridge that crossed over the waterfall. Hiking is one of my favorite activities.  In Oregon it is especially majestic.  The smell of the trees, the sound of the birds, the touch of the cool air on my skin, and the sight of the fertile forests of the northwest entices my senses.  I feel spoiled by the beauty of Oregon’s waterfalls because I was not nearly as impressed by this waterfall as I have been by some of the other ones in Oregon- haha.  But it was still beautiful by no means.  One of my goals for the summer: visit five new waterfalls!
Enjoying our Tillamook ice cream on a very cold and
windy beach in Lincoln City, Oregon

Shop! Shop! Shop!

Since we were in Lincoln City for the hike, we went up to town to eat lunch and partake in some old fashioned Goodwill shopping.  We stopped at a fish n’ chips place and I tried the halibut.  The fish melted in my mouth.  I loved it and I will definitely be indulging on it again before I leave.  After lunch we went up to Goodwill where I was finally able to find some warm sweaters!  Before we left Lincoln City, we stopped for some Tillamook ice cream and went to the beach to see some kite flying.  Lincoln City is such a fun little town, sometimes I wish that I was interning up there- I guess I have to stay where the estuary is.  Newport is extremely beautiful too, so I can’t complain! 
A few days ago I went shopping at Fred Meyer.  For those of you back home who don’t know what that is, I would describe it as an upscale grocery store paired with a nicer Sears.  Since I didn’t own any shoes, I was able to pick up two pairs from clearance.  I also found the jewelry section which was 50% off!  Compared to Hawaii, everything is so cheap here that I can’t resist.  It’s fun to pick up new things for my wardrobe when I’m living in a new place.  I’m trying to find pieces that help my inner hippy come out and so far I’ve been rather successful! 
Stay tuned for my 4th of July adventures! 


  1. It's neat hearing your first experiences with things that I grew up with: Tillamook, Fred Meyer, Lincoln City, Newport, etc. If you can, you should do the Tillamook factory tour and see Astoria-where the Goonies was filmed! Enjoy your time in the northwest!

  2. Sara--I love your post. I get to see everything you're doing and wish I were experiencing it with you.

  3. Wish you were here too Mom!
    Amber- I'm glad you are enjoying my blog. Tim gets a kick out of my analysis of my experiences here. I came to visit last summer and we went to the Tillamook factory and Astoria. It was a lot of fun. I like reading your blog as well. I'm sure your experiences in England are way more different than mine!


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