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Posts Tagged ‘Seaside Oregon’

I am still in Seaside and i feel stuck as if i am being pulled back in time and cannot escape . It’s like something clasps at me and holds me in. The passion is gone and a heaviness enters in. And i feel like i cannot move as body feels like it is sluggishly expanding – a heaviness, dullness and flaccidness coming upon me. Like the body remembers how it felt before, and returns to a previous state. and my thoughts and visions become limited too, and i turn once again to old places for answers that still do not come. And i do not see my way out.

And i ask myself how did i end up here once again – though i know the answer all too well, the refusal to take a leap and move out into the unknown. A desire to crawl inside and return to the (dis)comfort zone. And i try to let it be, but i feel like it is sucking me in. And in many ways i feel this is a continuation of my month here in december 2007, like everything in between has been erased or did not exist in the first place, like i have jumped into some parallel life or stepped backwards in time. And i know that it is not just the cool grey drizzle and rain, which on this 1st of June feels more like a december day on the coast, or merely that i have returned, but there is something greater here – in Seaside and up and down this coast.

There is a stuckedness to the Oregon coast. the wind blows through, and at times it howls, but what remains seems heavier and staid. Maybe that is why so many of the travel guides speak of road trips down the coast – drive or cycle the 101, enjoy the beauty and move on through. The coast is a place to pass through, but not a place to stay – mainly the working class (who barely work) or families or retirees who stay there. there is richness with so many secondary homes, people who do not stay the entire year – lives made elsewhere. And a feeling that people are holding on – a kindness but where the vibrations slow. And i feel stuck here too – body feels heavier and will i expand like so many of those around.

and i think it is the energy, traffic rushing up and down the 101, often the main streets of town. and the wind blows north or south, so much trapped by the mountains behind. and despite the winds the greys and storms can remain for so many days. and when it stops, the air becomes heavy almost sweetly sick, and some feel stuck here though many come, love to live a life on the beach. and i feel myself become denser, stripped of energy and motivation, stuck here longer than i planned – time to write but feel empty inside. And the quality of my writing feels as lifeless as me. My body expands, cells grow larger like the squiggles in the air – how did i get myself back into this place and will i ever escape.
It seems like a place onto itself, cut off from the cities and much of the world, a place that time has passed by through it struggles at times to hang on. I try to tell myself this is life, caring about your family, eating hotdogs and flying kites on the beach. And as i said the people are nice, but come the holiday weekend i feel the resentment of some of the poorer locals towards the richer city people who come to play.

I have so much more that i should write down, but feel the heaviness pressing down – and i have felt this way before – for a brief while it is wonderful, for the coast is truly a beautiful place. But if you do not ride the winds, you become planted like the trees, and covered in as much moss.

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My energy seems to have drained away as i sit inside in Seaside on another rainy day. I feel sapped with motivation for little and wonder if this is the calm i have been waiting for. But part of me is still restless feeling more stuck or complacent that truly content. And i know it is not merely the rain, for this feeling has been creeping up for a few days – and i know that in the past i  have ended up staying here much longer than planned. In some ways it feels like a sucking in for energy moves more slowly here, and at times i feel that i have moved into the past. And as before, i have little motivation for anything and am truly forcing myself to write even this.

I wonder where is that balance point between the frenetic energy that can push and drive you, and the calmness that becomes empty inside? And i feel that often when i move between the city and countryside. Is that not why people come to the beach, to slow down, unwind and let their cares disappear for a while? But when does that become lethargy?

It is true that here things move at a slower pace, at least in the winter and shoulder seasons that i have been here. Nothing really hurries or is in a great rush, people have time to say hello and wave a pedestrian across the road and often chit chat when you go into a store. Even today, on the friday of a holiday weekend with more traffic on the main street through town and longer lines in the grocery store, all feels slow.

And i think that is it – it is a town where nothing really seems to happen – a place where people lead out their daily lives, yes with personal dramas for i have seen some here, but without huge expectations for something more. over the holidays and in the summer, the town fills up with families and older people on vacation – playing on the beach, having barbeques, drinking and eating junk food. But it is a place where life goes on, life goes on as is.

The town at times seems like a time warp – and the tourist strip on broadway stands much the same as years ago with arcades and tourist shops and mainstream restos though today with espresso and sushi up the road. Peoples attire follows no fashion, the working middle of years ago, and the music you hear is more often than not, classic rock or the tinny pop that has not changed much over the years. Beyond the small tourist strip, it is a small town, a bit rundown, but more with the weathering of the simple clapboard houses, than any decay per se for it seems to me an older and a working class seaside town. a decent place to raise a family or retire into the saner, simpler life, and it is more open and friendly than its “sophisticated” neighbor down the road. Here I feel calm, and empty too, for it is a place to unwind but very little more. i value the kindness of the people, but i feel it is a town that just is. And i know that if i grew up here, it would be a place i would be dying to leave, but for now i am not motivated (or stressed) in any which way.  Is this is what is meant by beingness? – but i know i am not really content inside – a sense of boredom or ennui for it is a place to take a break but not a place to grow. i am calm but disconnected from the fairly conservative small town around, a life maybe i wish i could lead finding all i need in the daily routine, but somehow despite the shore, it is not stimulating to me. It makes me wonder if i am meant for the simple life after all?

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I sat on a huge driftwood log on the beach last night just before sunset. I was quite a ways from the water, and i took off my glasses to watch the few people walk and stand close to the shore. And i saw their energy and their doubles as i have before. I’m not sure if this is invasive, watching people like this, and i have done it many times before. What i see reminds me, and initially showed me, that we are made of energy.

In certain locales, just above the tide, people appear less dense, almost merging into the water or the air. Rather than just seeing an aura that surrounds a body, the body becomes like an aura in itself. People (and animals) are fuzzy and i know it is not just the lack of focus in my eyes, for some appear denser than others, and i have checked and it is not just the colour of their clothes. At times the ocean itself appears crisper than the bodies or souls who walk upon the beach.

I saw doubles as one became two (or sometimes three) – with one of the bodies less dense or more erethal than the other. I would put my glasses back on to see how many people were there, and the two would become one – crisp and clear once again and i knew that the “shadow” was not just the regular shadows we see that are made by the sun. The bodies would generally would walk or stand side by side, often joined, but at times would appear to separate, and they did not always move in unison and the double for all was not always on the same side. On one it was standing behind, as if looking on, and for a moment with another it joined and move away as if engaging in a dance.

Is this a persons shadow or is it their soul becoming visible to me? I don’t know but i have watched it before, often, but not exclusively, along the ocean shore. Is it something in the quality of the air – its denseness or the negative ions that are around, that allow this to appear to me? And what are these multiple bodies that generally appear as one?

I watched for a while and then put my glasses back on and went back up to the street where all appeared as before. But i was happy that i could see the energy again, a perception that comes and goes, and i only see with my glasses off.

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I walked and moved on the beach this morning and i felt so alive, the energy moving through my body, at one and at peace with all, and could feel the shifts inside. But somehow i cannot write about it, this hostel is loud, and i feel energized and unfocused once again. So this entry is a mishmash.

I am in seaside Oregon where i avoided coming on this trip. When i bought the bus ticket i felt my energy begin to shift, the heart chakra had movement and a slight smile upon my face. And when i went to bed last night i felt the presence come onto me. And today i walked along, against the wind to the south end of the beach, the tide was approaching low and i went into a meditative zone. The smile was deep, my shoulders moved onto themselves, my eyes blinked, my jaw loosened up and spirit rushed in as it has in this location before. I was one, and walked following my feet, huge clouds loomed over and i thought it threatened rain. but i sat and i sang and i danced around and was at one with the all. The world seemed brighter and crisper, and then i closed my eyes and was in the all. My mind would pop up, go buy groceries now, get closer before the sky opens up, get a coffee and write, but i would slip back into this transformative zone, the energetic shift slowly taking place, my nose and face aligning too and let it be. but slowly with my mind I found myself walking into the town, and would pause and let the waves pass though me. A wide smile appeared on my face and i smiled at the people and dogs around, Part of me wanted to stay on the beach, and part of me pressed towards town, and i soon left the magic place i was in. In town waves came on me, and i was calm and happy as i bought food and grocery shopped. The rain did not come and i headed back on down, but the moment was not as it had been before. Did i let my mind pull me from completing another shift, or had i taken all in that i could right then. On the way up to the store my shoulders ached, from the release of what they held, and then on the way back i was carrying so much more and felt weighted down. I was and am still calm, but the moment had passed. I walked closer to the water and looked at the designs made by the sea foam, an amazing design and i wanted to take a photo of it. But by the time i had dug my camera from the bottom of my backpack, the wind had blown the image away. I saw some amazing images of faces in more sea foam, temporary images that remained me that the moment is just that, a moment, and what is there can pass away.

I came back to the hostel and then back to the beach and then took a nap, tired from the energy or phase in the dimension shift, and felt it continue to come through me and i thanked the lord for the process.

I thought of when i had spent all that time here before, the magic i felt at times in that place on the beach (other times a different presence was felt) and of energetic jolts i did not understand, and of dancing and singing and playing in the rain and winter wind, and realizing why i had stayed all that time. And i know i am back in the process and never really left, and to have faith that god will guide me through rest of my journey along. And i feel lighter now, and this entry is jumbled, but i will put it out anyways to share the joy.

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On some journeys all doors open for you, tickets come cheap, a ride comes through, and all runs on time. And then there are other trips where delays stand in your face. My trip here to San Francisco in January 2008 was one of those. in fact, there were considerable delays. I came again this time from Oregon, not from Eugene from where i had come in the previous time less that three months (but seemingly years) before, but from Seaside where i had spent 40 days and nights and then some more. And in between those times, i had criss-crossed the country as well.

It was January (2008) when i arrived, and it was not until the middle of March that i would leave the area for a good time (until February 2009) not really expecting to come back again. But then again, the last time i was here, i did not imagine to be back so soon. In those three months i went south and north, alone and with my father. Though it became a time of frenetic movement, I did not leave California. But the story of my movement, the story with my dad, began and ended in San Bruno, a suburb of town near the airport, and will not be covered here.

But as i said, my journey was delayed, and i wondered if it was a good decision made, but it was an experience lived. I had been in Seaside over a month, and felt the slowness come over me, i felt like my time there was done. I wanted to start the new year in another locale, but i stayed the night and went to Portland new years day instead. The weather was Oregon rain, and despite the glitter of that city, i wondered why i came. My call was to go to San Fransisco, but i delayed and procrastinated for a few days, sitting in the public library, soggy, in front of the computers in the main hall, or one in the side room, looking at lands afar. By the time i decided to make the trek, the Amtrak fares had gone up high. My shoes were wet, i made a decision, i was going to go, so i went down to the dull greyhound station, a bought a ticket for 6:30 pm the following day, saving several dollars that way.

Now in Portland the greyhound and Amtrak stations are just next door to one another, but they are worlds apart, both are older, but amtrak is welcoming, has wooden benches and service with a smile, while greyhound is more concrete, with dim lighting, low ceilings, and a few plastic seats.

The day that i was to leave a storm came in – i spent the day drinking coffee, and at the library trying to keep myself dry. I went to the station early and got my baggage tags, but i felt something was off, i did not know why. The woman at the counter tagged my bags with what seemed to be hesitancy, but read me the gate and told me the time the bus would load. after i got in the security guard came in, and set up his table where he screened people through. I went out for a butt, heard some people murmuring about the bus and snow. I asked myself, was it delayed and when would it come, and then i looked at the ticket desk and saw some with bags walking away. I waited for a call to see if the bus was cancelled because of the storm. I looked around and the at the clock and then at 6:10 i went to the desk. The bus had just been cancelled, the pass has been closed due to heavy snow, there will be no more buses out tonight. my ticket was non-refundable, and the hostel was booked that night, i checked the time and then asked by chance, can i use it again at anytime. They stamped the ticket with the date the bus was cancelled, i could not get a refund, but could use it later.

I ran over to the Amtrak station where the bus to seaside departed i believe at 6:35. I had just a few minutes to buy a ticket, a couple dawdled in line, but i got the ticket and ran out to the bus just as it was ready to pull out. Now people in Seaside had told me i was crazy to want to go to San Francisco, a big city in California to the south. And i had wondered about my trip, somehow i was brought back to the place, something drew me back there. Another storm prevented my departure from Seaside, almost a month before, and now another brought me back there. I had thought that chapter in my life (still to be written) had ended with the year 2008, but like the circles back to San Francisco, circles had, and would again, take me back to Seaside.

I arrived, walked in and dumped my bags, your back rick said, now working the desk. The bus was cancelled i said in a rush, the pass was closed with the storm. I went to my old room, and to the familiar bed, and slept tight for the night, feeling like i had come back home, and glad now that nick had left. I got up early the next morning, to see if i would have to catch the bus, not really wishing to. I called the greyhound toll free number and got the recorded message that listed cancellations from the week before. i logged on to the computer before the front desk opened a bit worried the manager would discover that i knew how and checked the website. No buses were going south that day. I waited and waited and kept checking back, but for 3 days the message appeared, the buses were cancelled from Oregon to California, it had been another major winter storm.

The room was not to remain my own the following night, a girl came in and moved in there, a student on a winter break trip, but one with a car. the next day was nicer, the rain had slowed, and we went for a hike on Tillamook head, the wind came up and i caught a chill, but still went out to look at cannon beach and caught the bus back to seaside on my own. I had been feeling like i was catching a cold, had almost not gone on the hike the truth be told. But i had a chance, a lift in the car, to take me to the headland and more – and i missed the trees and the rocky vista, and after all what was a little rain. But that night the cold took hold, and though the buses started up after two days, i stay for over a week recovering, sleeping and reading in bed.

David, the sweetie despite his alcohol and methadone, kept warning me of the city and to stay away. He’d been to Portland, into the city for a few days, and was glad to get back to the serenity of winter in a coastal oregon town. Rick was working harder, and with Nick gone away, maybe there was place for me. I was lulling back into seaside zone but the dramas also pushed me away. I was tempted to change my plans, but i still had the ticket in hand, one that could not be returned. The dramas got stronger as the week went on, the young guy who lost his baby to social services after trying with his ex to raise it in a cheap motel room had his part-time hours stocking groceries at Safeway cut back even more, and there was talk of him having what work was around there. And then there was the crazy who looked at all with suspicion, she finally talked, became incomprehensible, and had to be taken away.

My last night a new man came in, from a sunnier place, to relive his youthful memories of summers spent in Seaside. We talked outside of many things, the chatted and drank cheap beer in his room with the young guy. The conversation got esoteric, and the kid left very soon. He fell into a trance and told me details of my past and drew a picture of a lion exactly the same as i had once drawn. he spoke of my future and called me a blocked artist said i need not go to San Francisco – that my future lie neither here not there. I knew i was leaving and so did he, and said maybe i would end up near there – near the russian river – but not right away, may take several journeys first. We more drank PBR, that awful cheap beer, and talked away till late in the night. When i got up my legs were wobbly, and i spent time over the toilet bowl throwing up. My elation turned to sorrow, it felt like my life were coming on up, and if i had come to hug a toilet bowl i just had to get away.

The next morning i peeled myself out of bed, said goodbye to seaside and got out on the road, taking the amtrak bus back to the city. The trip seemed long, my head did hurt, so i caught the first greyhound out of Portland. It was the schedule i avoided when i booked my bus, with a five hour layover in Sacramento in the middle of the night.

The bus had the usual cast of characters – a girl out of prison, another fighting for custody, a guy on a last leave from the army and more – and for much of the time i had to share a seat. I remember the break in eugene, got coffee at the starbucks but little else except that the pass over the mountains was clear.

We arrived in Sacramento just before 2am; the bus to SFO would not leave til 7. I sat out back and had a smoke, listening to loud rap coming out of a souped up car and looking around the corner watching a drug deal. I went into station, talked with one of the smokers who i met on the breaks, he knew the place, and me and two guys walked the deserted streets of downtown to a Dennys in the middle of the night where a middle-aged waitress with big hair kept filling our coffee cups. i forget their stories now, one out of jail to start a new life, and the other in a transition of sorts, and on the way back one smoking some crack. still it was he who digged deep and gave the man sleeping on the street in the ragged long coat $10 of his own.

I got to san francisco to the grisly greyhound station and walked to the hostel where i was to spend my time. It rained for several days i think, and was it this time i discovered the beach, went on more walking tours, spent time at the library and walked to golden gate park, discovering the city and remembered to meditate. The story of this time remains a blur, mixed up with my time here just months before. A time of transition, of calm and panic, for i no longer knew what i would do, and the polish of the city was gone. I made so discoveries but also lost some of the dream that was contained in this place. (that time here is another entry, written together with the time before)

I was out of cash, and began to worry and made my way down to santa cruz and monterey. It was there that I found out my dad coming out for a visit and i would meet him for a few days back here. i came back a few days sooner than hoped for I enjoyed my time in monterey and did not want to leave. The manager said could stay more than the allotted time – but one day he was not there an employee instead, and told me i had stayed too long. I came back up here to wait for my dad, staying down at Fishermans Wharf. Walks around, in the moment, a sense of calm, but a storm brewing underneath, i wanted to stop this existence of mine. A few days later i was picked up at the hostel by my father and headed out to the suburb of San Bruno, and another month long chapter of life on the road in a circle back to the suburbs again and then yet another phase of my life that led me back here again.

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