Happy Trails

whew, how about that 4th of july? above are pictures from the annual firework show at Emerald Downs. i got called in to work as an usher which isn’t always the funnest (note: the red squiggly line that popped up just told me that “funnest” isn’t actually a word…) and made for a long day, plus the traffic leaving the track was a nightmare but in an effort to look on the bright side, I got to enjoy a free firework show! and it was pretty good, even though the rough of the grandstand cut off the high flying explosives.

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the 4th of july itself was spent hanging out at my grandma’s house in spanaway. but I would say the highlight of the weekend was camping! two friends and I made a 3.5 drive over to eastern washington. or more like 4 hour drive because there was some confusion and miscommunication about where the campground actually was so we drove to the wrong end of the lake. if you’ve ever been to eastern Washington you know that the lakes are long (sometimes miles long) and skinny. so we wasted about 50 minutes, wasted lots of gas and exchanged several frustrating phone calls before we finally arrived at the right place. we drove far enough past it to almost be at the grand coulee dam, we should have just gone the two extra miles and seen it before turning back! while I would never actually want to live in eastern washington (there’s not actually much there, just lots of dusty little one gas station towns), it does have a quiet, rustic beauty to it that would make me love to have a summer home there, right on a pretty lake.

BANKS LAKE dry falls
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i do have a story to walk away with, though! about 15-20min away is a lake called Deep Lake, which has provides the pastime of cliff jumping for those adventurous to trek up and jump off of one of about three different cliffs and brave enough to ignore morbid warning signs saying “warning: people have been injured and died jumping off the cliffs.” doesn’t sound like a big deal at all, right? just like when we were little and rough housing with family members, it’s all fun and games until someone gets hurt. we all know that guy who teeters over the edge, staring over the edge down into the water trying to muster the courage to actually jump. watching people braver than him go on an jump. encouraging him, egging him on, daring him. that guy who has the devil and the angel sitting on his shoulders, one begging not to do it and the other prodding “do it, do it!” so after almost 40min of such deliberation, the young man in a quick and unexpected burst of courage (none of us were ready for it when he actually jumped) went for it! he leapt over the edge of the cliff (about 20ft), hurtling his body forward in an attempt to perform a front flip that he has never performed before. already this is a recipe for disaster. not quite getting his body fully rotated, the guy belly flops, smacking the water surface which is almost as hard as concrete. he comes up a bit slowly and before i know it, a girl is shouting “seizure, seizure! somebody help him!” several guys are instantly in the water, hurtling off the cliff to help him. if you’ve ever been in a scary situation, it always seems unreal at first. you’re not sure if the person is actually serious or not. he ended up being alright and was walking, but his head clearly was drumming and his chest was bright red. needless to say, the close call was a bit of a buzz kill, and only one more person jumped before everyone decided to pack it up and leave (the sun was going to go down soon anyway).

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while the camping trip did turn out to be a bit more of a couples thing than we anticipated (which took a toll on my morale at some points given my own sad personal life), us three bachelorettes managed to make our own fun. using the blow up mattresses to float out onto the lake and lay lazily under the sun as we floated on the water and let waves rock us occasionally was probably my favorite part, i definitely recommend it. unless you get an opportunity to ride in a boat or jet ski, then ride those so you don’t get stuck gazing at them with jealousy! i was offered room to stay another night but my two friends had to get home and i wasn’t keen on being the fifth wheel in the campsite. so we packed up our stuff on Saturday evening and trekked back home, exiting past a sign that bids you “happy trails” as you leave. we stopped to look at the dry falls before we left, it really is an amazing site. pictures didn’t really do us justice, they just don’t capture the depth. but i’m glad i saw it, right before sundown. passing through the area, i now have an idea of what the grand canyon might look like and am eager to see it someday!

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how did everyone else spend their weekend? any scary stories to share like the cliff jumping incident?

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