19 June, 2011

Walking to Whittier

It's been a couple years since we've participated in the Walk to Whittier, so when I heard about it this year I wanted to go.  It's a 2 and a half mile walk through a tunnel that connects Whittier to the rest of the world.  The tunnel is one lane wide, so traffic alternates direction into and out of town.  It's a very large lane - big enough that buses, trains, and even boats can go through.
It was a cloudy, drizzly day - but since we spent a majority of the time walking through the tunnel, the weather didn't matter so much.  I had a lovely time visiting with our friend Shawn, as we trekked the terrain.
Once we made it to town, we had a couple hours to explore before it was time to catch the bus.  Another benefit of this walk (besides that it's cool and can be an enjoyable substitute for some exercise) is that after all the walking, we get to eat and shop, then don't have to walk back to the car.
The rain was more like a fine mist, as if we were walking through super-saturated clouds.  Never enough to be uncomfortable, but what seemed like a fine layer of dew on everything.  We must've walked pretty quickly, because we were second in line at our choice of restaurant.  Let me tell you, fresh fish and chips is hard to beat!
From there, we wandered the town.  Whittier isn't very large - you can see most of it right from the marina.  We decided to explore one of the derelict buildings, just behind the local inn and up a small rise.  I love architecture - old buildings, new ones, interesting lines, etc.  (This place reminds me of an insane asylum from back in the day, where someone was probably tortured and murdered horribly, and now that person (or those people) haunt the site of their doom.)  Aside from that, Greg has a new-found fascination with graffiti, ever since he watched Exit Through the Gift Shop.  (I have to say it was an interesting flick, but I don't think it's really a documentary.  I think it's filmed in the same style and could be based on true events, but is a well crafted make-believe tale.)  I think that graffiti is definitely a form of vandalism, but if I have to look at it, I'd prefer to look at the more artistic applications.  I don't need to know that John loves Ginger, or that Mary is a gang-banger.  I like the dinosaurs and deep sea creatures that peppered the inside and outside of this building (in the picture above, on the lower right corner is a T-Rex).
We finished our exploring in time to make it to the fudge shop for a nice little treat before we boarded the bus... except the bus was late.  Which wouldn't have been all that bad, except we're standing in the misty, drizzly, rain, and if we miss the tunnel, we're stuck in Whittier over night (it's the last tunnel going out for the day - one more coming in, then closed for the night).
While we were waiting, a friend we haven't seen in years pulled into the lot to go to the coffee shop right next door.  Small world!  Eric does commercial fishing out of Whittier now, and he'd just finished with some work and happened to stop by for some caffeine to keep him awake for a little while longer.  It was great to catch up with him and find out what's new.  It shouldn't surprise me that much anymore, that wherever we go Greg will find someone he knows.  I'm much more anonymous, I suppose (and I'm fine with that).
I can hear the creepy music playing in the background, and if I stare at the picture hard enough, I think there are faces in the shadows of the windows.  They only come out in the mist, and they're hungry.  Good thing our bus made the last tunnel out... (ooooh!  I hope I haven't just given myself nightmares!)

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