I know, I know, I have so little real cause to complain. Life on the farm during a pandemic is idyllic compared to what most people in this country are going through. Really, none of my three (or is it four?) nominal jobs are affected in the least: the farm still needs to be run and the software needs to be written. The damned novel that won’t die still needs rewriting. So on I plow as if everything were normal. I mean, the old normal, as opposed to the new normal.

But all of these jobs are self-employment of sorts, and I know I’ve said before that the cruel lie of being self-employed is that you can take time off whenever you want. The bitter truth is that you never actually do. Trawling back through my calendar, it looks like my last actual “time off” was over New Years, when I went to Honolulu with Devon and the kids. Of course, I managed to turn that into a work trip, meeting with a bunch of folks from UHawaii about the software project. And there have been afternoons off and an occasional day hike, but every evening I’ve been back in front of my computer, balancing farm budgets and trying to juggle code and open source contributors.

By the beginning of last week, I knew it had been too long since I’d gotten my head clear. I needed to breathe. I threw the tent, sleeping bag and way too much food in the back of the Subaru and drove out to the Quinault River for a few days of camping. Off grid and out of cell signal. Away from people, from news and apparently everything except ancient trees, rolling rivers and bears. Yeah, bears. I’d only once ever seen a bear in the wild before, but on all mornings except the first, I saw more bears than people.

So, I’m not going to tie you up with verbiage on how wonderful it all was. You want pictures. Here are the pictures:

8 responses to “Breathe

  1. I so enjoyed the photos from your solo camping outing. I thing like the woods to bring you back to yourself. Natures powerful gift

    Sent from Sheila’s iPhone


    Liked by 1 person

  2. Lovely place. Is the human density unusually low, with the result that the bears have come out to play? And gather those salmonberries.


    • Yup, I suspect the lack of campers has let the bears stretch their legs a bit. That being said, when I drove through the town/resort on the Lake, it looked pretty tumble full of people with flip flops, Big Gulps and not enough sunscreen.


  3. Thank you for sharing your camping trip. It helps to ee the photos while we are still in lockdown.


  4. Thanks Pablo. I’ve camped in Quinalt and loved the photo reminders. Glad you got to see a bear. I went backpacking 2 weeks ago from Mammoth to a hot spring (Iva Bell) 15 miles away. Very restorative. I already need another dose.


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