Tuesday, June 22, 2010

pdx to oc, day three

On the road again, after a stop in the Bay Area to visit my sisters and nephews...I stayed up too late and got up too early, but I was eager to get the trip down that desolate stretch of Interstate 5 over with. Not much to look at but gently rolling golden hills and cows. Lot of cows. Down around Coalinga, you can smell the feedlots from miles away. A truly awful way to raise food. I'm not a vegetarian, but why we feel as if it's our right to treat these animals as if they're just inanimate, non-feeling things is a mystery to me.

Further south the rolling hills give way to the enormous San Joaquin Valley, a formerly fertile, now incredibly arid place full of orchards and vineyards and orange groves fed by broad, manmade canals moving water from North to South. Farm is such a quaint word. This is Agribusiness.

It's easy to be critical, but not so easy to reconcile that criticism when I pull into an oasis to fill up my car with gas and have a breakfast of fast food at Burger King.
However, nature is not quite so critical...the wild things see opportunity in the very things I'm criticizing.

Hours later, I make the long, hot climb up and over the final pass

into LA smog and traffic.

It seemed fitting that I was listening to this song at the time:

Welcome to LA...

did I mention it was hot?


Aunt Snow said...

I love the nests!! How funny! How wonderful that nature takes opportunities everywhere!!

And I did not know you were down here!! Stop by at the Beach House if you get a change, and visit. Email me if you like.

foolery said...

I make that drive from home twice a year, usually -- 550 miles each way. I agree with you about Coalinga. Makes me sad (and nauseous, and this from a girl raised on a diary!).