When we got to Oregon, we had already spend more than 20 weeks on the road. Driven thousands of kilometres. Hiked a fair amount too. While we camped most of the time, we found ourselves counting money to give ourselves some breaks with a few motel nights here and there - and much deserved showers.
The thing is, lassitude started to settle in. I hate to admit it, but after four months, we started longing for some space and privacy. I dreamed of hanging my clothes in a closet instead of rummaging through a hiking bag in the booth of the car. In fact, packing and unpacking became so tedious we ended up with a raging mess all over the backseat. We longed for a home-cooked meal that wasn't prepared on our tiny gas stove. We missed our friends and family.
It seems almost ungrateful to say this; after all, we were on the trip of a lifetime, exploring places we had wanted to visit for so long. But at some point, we had to stop. We literally collapsed in a motel room, near Cannon Beach. We were so out of it that on our venture to the big rock, we got spooked by the crowd and never even got to shoot. That is when we realised we would literally ruin the end of our trip if we didn't indulge in a little us time to recharge our batteries.
Two days later, we got back in the car and drove to Painted Hills. It turned out to be a great idea; it was the stop that gave us the courage we needed for our last few weeks in Washington State and Canada.
While the drive was tedious, seeing the hills appear made me buzz with excitement. Relieved to feel this familiar twinkle of awe and energy, we parked the car and started wandering around with Bowie blaring in my ears.
As far as alien places go, this one was top notch. I still am certain that I would have taken better shots had it been the beginning of the trip and not the end. Turns out morale plays a huge role in the way I approach my photography. I guess I'll know better next time. Besides, it's not like I need an excuse to come back.