Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Day 7-Port Angeles/Forks-Twilight Tribute

All we can ask for is to learn from our mistakes in life; luckily I brought my sleeping bag in the car last night and was as "cozy as a clam" as they say. After some denial about getting up, we finally headed into Walmart to change and brush our teeth. Anna bought a peach and I headed back to the car to put my contacts in and finish getting ready. We ate breakfast and started our hour and 29 minute drive to Forks. For those of you that may not know, (with the exception of my daily title that gave it away) Forks, Washington is where the book/movie saga Twilight is based out of. Stephanie Myer the author chose the location since it gets the most amount of rain yearly. The inner 12 year old girl in me (though I saw the movie before I read the books, putting me around 16 or 17 years old) had me jumping for joy. We looked up online, and there was a series of things you could see in town or nearby related to the book or movie. The town welcome sign, Forks High school, Bella's truck at the visitor center, and both Bella, and the Cullen's houses (though they weren't actually the ones used in the film.) We also read that back in Port Angeles was the restaurant Edward takes Bella to called Bella Italia where she orders mushroom ravioli. We decided we would go there for a late lunch when they opened at 4:00. The drive to Forks was beautiful, we were alongside a river and covered in a canopy of trees. When we arrived at the town sign, there were two 10 year old girls with their parents up at the sign; and then me, 26 and Anna 21. Not ashamed at all I walked up and took a photo of the sign, we eat got one with each other in front of it as well before proceeding on to the high school. Apparently the high school was not used during the filming, but the sign was based off of the actual one. After snapping a photo, we drove to the visitor center where Bella's truck resides. The town of Forks is very quaint and seems the saga has kept it alive. Even the radio station is called Twilight! We passed the TrueValue and Outfitter which Bella worked at and arrived at the packed visitor center which also was a lumber museum. After taking my very giddy photo with her old beat up Chevy pickup, we went inside the visitor center to see they sold all kinds of movie paraphernalia. The woman working there was very friendly and helpful. She gave us all kinds of papers on the area, maps, and book trivia questions. She informed us that we could visit the La Push beachfront where Bella and Jacob would hang out on, or the Hoh Rainforest where you could get an idea of some of the inspiration for where some of the filming would be done. (Though a lot of it actually took place in Oregon, hey! We're headed there next!) We agreed we wanted to check out both areas and headed for the beach. It was only about 25 minutes away and was very fitting for what a beach in Washington may look like. It was beautifully eery and a full stone beach. There were dead trees; massive, laying all over the place. The waves were big and you could see a few islands in the near distance. Anna and I went our separate ways enjoying the scenery and taking photos. We met up along the waters edge picking up the most beautiful weathered polished stones; similar to what you would buy in a store. We stayed at the beach exploring for quite some time before pushing on to the rainforest. The drive was a little further maybe an hour and half or so but the drive in was unreal. The lush green trees covered the road above us and enclosed us in a green tunnel. We drove for miles like this on tight winding roads before hitting the ranger station. This was the first park we had to pay to get into, $20 but was good for 7 days. We'd be staying in the Olympic Forest for two nights and three days so I suppose it wasn't that bad. We parked and grabbed our things to go on a short loop trail through the rainforest. The trees were covered with green moss, there were ferms dominating the forest floor, the treetops were a mile high and bright green; everything was a gorgeous green. The path was a very enjoyable walk nothing strenuous leading to many photo opportunities. I walked as such a small person in a much bigger world, occasionally thinking what if I looked up and saw a vampire as gorgeous as Rosalie? It sure did set the scene well in my mind. We ended the loop making it back to the car and drove back to Port Angeles to have our last Twilight stop (at least for now) at Bella Italia. We got in a half hour earlier than opening time so we sat in the car blogging and uploading. When we arrive at the door front, there was a group of teenage girls; what a surprise. We walked in however and they never ended up coming in. We were the first guest since opening and had to wait a minute before being seated. We were sat in the best table of the house (one I would picture Edward and Bella sitting at, I'll have to re-watch the movie to see if I am correct.) it was a round booth table right next to the window in the far corner. The hostest was very friendly and noted our server would be with us momentarily. I took a photo of the menu of course and noted the mushroom ravioli dish was even called "Bella's mushroom ravioli." Our waitress, older than the hostest but equally as friendly came over and asked if we would like something to drink; I ordered a glass of Pinot Noir from the North West. When she returned with the glass she asked if we knew what we would like; I replied, "can you guess?" Instantly she said, "the mushroom ravioli of course" and looked at Anna, "two orders?" We nodded in unison. I wonder how much of their sales go to that dish alone after the saga came out. We were brought the most amazing oil and balsamic vinegar dip with bread that we ate seconds on. The Pinot Noir along with the awaited famous mushroom ravioli were to die for. We both ate every last drop. The waitstaff would switch between three women our remainder of our stay at the restaurant, each one just as nice and accommodating as the one before. We were the only ones in the restaurant until a couple came in later and were seated on the other side of the restaurant out of sight. I felt like royalty being here, and yet I was wearing my hiker trash hat backwards and didn't quite look the part. Our main waitress asked if we would be around next weekend since Stephanie Myer was actually coming for the weekend for book signings and such, we noted we wouldn't be but how exciting for the town. Seems the publicity has really brought the town back to life and some business to the area. We signed the check and were on our way a couple more hours to camp in the Olympic Wilderness at Staircase Canpground. The drive was long sitting in the passenger seat with a full belly and a glass of wine deep. I just wanted to fall asleep, I FaceTimed with Hunter and Mom during bath time and it was good to see them both and talk for a bit. After losing reception we continued our car ride listening to throwbacks on the radio, Washington may be stuck in the 80's and 90's and I'm not complaining. Eventually with less than 40 minutes left, the GPS told us to take a right turn off the main road; next thing we know we see a sign that says Forest Service Road pavement ends, great. Could this be the way? Were bombing down the gravel road at 20 miles per hour dodging potholes and hoping we are headed in the right direction. No wonder 15 miles takes 35 minutes. We see a pickup truck coming in the opposite direction, as we pass both he and our heads stare in curiosity though I think he was just a hunter, Anna however thought he was going to kill us. Luckily we didn't see him again, and that is probably a good thing since about a mile later we had to pull over so I could go to the bathroom; damn wine. I looked over during the action and saw a pretty big bullfrog dead in the road, how comforting. We carried on and came to a few signs, that must be a good thing right? For awhile we just drove, and then the road switched back to pavement and shortly after back to gravel. I was at the point of wanting to just be in my tent, I had hit a wall and wanted to be out of the car and relaxing. We finally arrived at the campground and did a drive through before settling on site number 4. It was a huge site, and had river access. I took out the bag with both of our tents and hung them to dry out a bit. From there I walked down to the riverbed of rocks and sat for awhile relaxing and catching up on the blog. There is no cell phone service here, but at least I can write it all out for when there is and hopefully be up to date finally. It began to get dark so I walked back towards our site and both Anna and I set up our tents on opposing sides. It would have been nice if we could have set up down below closer to the river, but since we didn't know the weather forecast; we figured higher ground was better. I lay in my tent blogging for a little while before it became more tedious work and that is when I decided to call it a night and write more in the morning.

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