Entering the coast of Washington
"Here, in the wilderness, lives the whim-filled chance called Life.
Miracles may become visible in this dimension
where fabricated reality dissolves." - Carolyn Mary K
I had always told myself that one day I would find the place where the forest met the sea.
The fog began to creep through the treetops, slowly crawling down hilltops and eventually spreading its thick fingers to softly touch the windows of my car as I wound my way up the endless 101 North. The further I drove, the further the fog thickened. The further the fog thickened, obscuring my view, the further my mind quieted into the present moment.
It's funny how fog has a way of becoming a security blanket, tunneling our vision and calling us into seeing what lies just ahead instead of peeking too far into the future, and further into anxiety.
As my mind settled into the grey light, I began to also feel that this land, this place had a thick presence about it. I took a deep breath a noticed that the air even smelled different- thick and damp, full of the exhales of thousands of trees dripping with dewy salt on thick soil.
"So this is what the Washington coastline is like", I thought as a rolled down my window to take another deep breath of the air as it whipped through my hair and sent shivers down my spine. "Hauntingly beautiful."
It began to rain. Hard.
After driving for several hours I finally arrived at my beachside campsite to discover that a giant puddle had formed over the entire lot, and without a break in the rain I knew that I had to come up with another plan...quickly because the sun was about to set, and calmly because I did not have any cell phone service. With my wipers on full blast I tried to remain calm and continue North in search for a cabin or hotel or a place to sleep in my car for the night.
Another hour went by. The fog and rain thickened. For this little Southern California lady, driving in Washington rain for the first time, alone, and without cell phone service on a road that seemed to lead to nowhere was definitely not an experience that had been properly prepared for.
A lodge appeared out of the thick fog, and quickly turning into the parking lot, my stomach began to turn as the place looked like it was already full. I stumbled out of my car and sloshed my way into the lobby, dripping and squeaking over to the front desk. "You have one room left? Really? I'll take it! And do you have a payphone I can use? I mean, is that even still a thing?...Oh it is still a thing around here, ok got it, thanks."
After gathering my pack for the night I set off to find my room. As I opened the door I immediately felt two things: 1- the giant wooden desk under the window that perfectly overlooked the ocean and tree-lined shore would be the perfect place to cultivate a creative outpouring, and 2- being inside in a room made me feel caged and claustrophobic. Although this rustic cabin looked like it could be photographed for a spread in every hipster travel magazine, all I wanted was to be outside, to feel this crazy energetic place.
I shrugged on my windbreaker, attached the rain sleeve over my pack, and found my waterproof camera. It was time to be quiet. To listen. To feel. To discover. To let go. To not care about the time. To let go of judgements. To go into solitude.
It felt like the land was calling me out into something important.
There was a trailhead a half mile North of the lodge. In the downpour, I felt thrill and nerves all at once. This is where the forest would meet the sea.
I took my boots off walked bare footed. I wanted to feel the land transform itself from pine needles to pebbly sand- to feel connected, body, mind, and soul.
Emerging from the forest and onto the rough blue sands I felt a pull in my spirit. I wept. I was finally in a land that perfectly matched the language of my soul.
As the tears streamed down my face and mixed with the rain streaming off my hood, I released two people and a burden that had haunted me for the past two years. I needed that cry. You know, the sloppy, slobbery, snotty, salty cry that we all hide from one another but that when executed properly can bring about a powerful letting go. I let go and Nature caught me in her sweet healing waters. She let me cry it out to her and then she brought me a gift.
"The answer is to be so quiet that the questions stop." - Carolyn Mary Kleefeld