Tsunami, My Ass


i fellIf you were to hand me a first class plane ticket to Paris, I’d hand it right back. If you said I won an all-expenses-paid trip to Hong Kong for Fashion Week, I’d say I already have enough socks and underwear. If you said Trump, himself, was putting you and a friend up in Trump Tower, New York, for a week and would I like to come, I’d tell you to punch him in the nuts for me and send me a postcard.

But a local natural disaster? Now you’re talkin’.

downloadAll it takes is one little tsunami alert for me to pack my bags and hit the beach. This one came courtesy of Chile. Well, twenty-two miles below Chile. A 8.8 temblor was sloshing a lot of ocean our way, the headlines read, and we had just so much time to get our affairs in order and seek higher ground. I knew just the ground to seek: Cascade Head.

A quick two mile hike puts you on the edge of a 600-foot high cliff above a rocky cove, I figured that was far enough into the sky to avoid drowning. Also, it displays a grandiose view of the beach at the mouth of the Salmon River Estuary: a perfect location to watch destructive walls of water inundate the coastline and destroy all life as we know it. All I needed was snacks.I raced across the state and beat out that hike in record time–pausing for wildlife, of course–and set my butt down on the hill. Camera? Check. Binoculars? Check. Eagles? Check and Check.

But where was the friggin’ tsunami?

I waited for hours, staring at wave after wave, willing each successive one to be just a little higher than the last. Nothin’. Not a damned thing. All that anticipation and sweaty vehicle insurance research for nothing. (P.S. I’m covered for earthquakes & tsunamis.) I snapped a resigned shot or two of a steel grey sunset and slunk back to Portland.Maybe Los Angeles will finally slide into the water and send a little sumpin’-sumpin’ up our way next year. Me and the eagles have a bet goin’.

February 27, 2010