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Rugged Beauty on the Pacific15.07.2008

Tags: United States       Comments: 1

Huge seagulls, huge waves, huge trucks: On the coast of Oregon the Solartaxi celebrates its one-year anniversary surrounded by real American horsepower-monsters and clever solar ideas. However, Louis Palmer is not feeling so festive.
Border crossings have been easier. We've been stuck for four hours on the Canadian side of the border with the US. But this is not the event of the day. Today we celebrate our anniversary - we've been on the road for one year. Or rather, we would like to celebrate. But sitting in the waiting room at the US border control is not exactly our idea of fun.

The mood picks up as we drive through the state of Oregon and we're treated to a view of its fantastic landscape. The wild Pacific coast simply bowled us over. Huge seagulls, huge waves, rugged vegetation - and all this under a bright blue sky. We stop at almost every lookout point. The scenery has never been so good.
A semi suddenly stops next to us with a trailer-home in tow. The touring retired couple announces their energy consumption like so: "We use less gas than before. With a gallon of diesel we get a full 11 miles." I quickly calculate: This corresponds to 20 liters of diesel for every 100 kilometers. This must be real progress. If you used 40 liters before.
What makes our trip across North America so nice is our collaboration with the American Electric Automobile Association. From Vancouver on we've made use of a newsletter to all members and so we stop in Seattle at Paul Peavyhouse's place. He and his wife Carol confess to being not real Americans: "We have no television, and our second car is an electric pickup."
Ty Adams is waiting for us in Portland in front a brewery that will soon be converted to a solar brewery. The heat will come from solar panels that will be installed on the roof. Even ideas such as these can emerge in the land of unlimited possibility.

As we passed the border into the US, we had traveled 32000 kilometers up until then - and been on the road for exactly one year. The feeling arises that we will make our destination. But an attack of fever and a bad cough force us to delay. After a year of non-stop travel perhaps this is simply a sign of exhaustion. Meanwhile, we've extended the trip to 18 months. And without having planned it, 18-hour days have become the rule.


by: Paul Peavyhouse

28.07.2008 05:07

Correction, we have an 84" blu-ray HD projector, but we watch no broadcast TV. We aren't total granolas! :) Take care!

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