#Route101: Reedsport / North Bend / Mapleton

We stopped here on our way to Portland on December 30, purely to take that photo in the last slide, but ended up leaving with some mini cakes and a big ol’ jar of blackberry High Country Honey from Lakeside, OR.

It was a little sad to see all these shuttered and vacant stores lining both sides of main street, sandwiched between hokey MAGA wood art and a cute little “bakery & coffee shop” that didn’t sell coffee. It felt like a poetic aper├žu of this place.

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This was where we spent most of the morning of New Year’s Eve. This moment here was after lunch, belly full and heart even fuller with a renewed sense of optimism for the future.

We had marked that feeling by spontaneously purchasing a large (something like 2 x 4 foot) painting at the cafe; a bright and cheerful abstraction that we later noticed had flecks of actual flora in the paint. We never do that sort of extravagant thing, but I’m glad we have it. It looks so good over our bed.

We wrapped the thing up in plastic and carefully propped it up in the back of our car, then wandered over here, and I took these photos.

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A quick stop much earlier in our #Route101 road trip, on our way to the Sea Lion Caves (spoiler: it was closed; a storm was coming), as we inched our way towards the California border.

As you may have noticed from much of what I’ve shared so far, I’m fascinated by the western storefront typology. When I first visited the PNW around this same time way back in 2013, these squat little structures were the first phenomena I experienced as being definitively “in America.” I remember sitting in the back of the car and asking Christine’s dad why everything was one story high; why didn’t people build vertically? The question hadn’t occurred to him.

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