I’m planning a trip to Oregon to see my parents.
They’ve moved (downsized homes) recently.
They’d like me to see their new home and I’d like to see them.
It’s always difficult to find a big enough chunk of time to make the trip.
I’ve decided to drive round trip, alone, this time.
The drive could be made in three days (each way), but I think I’m going to take four.
After all, if I’m driving past some of the most beautiful scenery in the United States, I want to be able to SEE it.
I’ve driven up and down the California coast numerous times in the past so I don’t need to stop and do everything.
On the other hand, I don’t want to be setting driving records without noticing my surroundings either.
I’ve made tentative plans to depart mid-July.
On the first day I plan to leave in the afternoon and make the jaunt to Santa Barbara.
I will visit with friends that afternoon and evening.
The second day, I’ll drive up the coast from Santa Barbara to Santa Cruz.
If it works out as I hope, I’ll have a chance to shoot with my friend Barry Blanchard (and a few others?) that evening.
The third day, I’ll drive to Eureka.
The fourth day, I’ll drive to Eugene, Oregon.
I haven’t figured out how many days I’ll be in Oregon –
Probably three or four days.
I hope to route my return trip to stay at different spots than those I stop at on my way up.
(I’ve booked hotels for my trip up to Oregon, but haven’t booked the return trip yet.)
I’ll be staying at a decent hotel in Santa Barbara, but all my other hotels will probably be sketchy.
Since I won’t be spending much time in the hotels except to sleep and shower, I don’t want to spend much money on them.
On the other hand, a woman traveling alone (with professional camera gear) and staying in sketchy hotels might not be the safest combination?
In an attempt to make things as safe as possible I’m going to take the minimum camera equipment possible with me.
I will keep it with me at all times – no exceptions.
I’ve ordered hands-free pepper spray.
I always carry pepper spray when I’m out shooting, but I like the hands free design of the type I just ordered.
(No fumbling for it if I need it.)
Like my camera gear, I will have it with me at all times.
I also bought a personal alarm.
I’ve heard great things about it.
I don’t want to go overboard on the safety thing, but it’s smart to take a few precautions since I’ll be alone.
I was talking with one of my male photographer friends the other night.
He commented on how he never has to think about where he goes, what time of day it is when he shoots alone outdoors, etc.
He was almost apologetic about this fact of life.
Gender still plays a huge role for women whether we want it to or not.
Misogyny runs deep in our society.
Over the next few days I’ll be trying to nail down more details for my trip.
I’ll also begin booking hotels for my return trip.
If you have any suggestions of places or things I *must* see and/or photograph,
I’d love to hear them.
I may not have time to do everything I want on this trip,
But, of course, I’ll be squeezing in as much as possible.