Our last few days in the Pacific North West were spent incredibly well, beginning with an afternoon at Spin Laundry Lounge in Portland, a laundromat that had not only a coffee shop and a bar inside, but also an arcade! It’s pretty brilliant, we all agreed, and none of us seemed to mind doing laundry so much that day.   
 After our relaxing day of unpacking our things, getting settled back into Harvey, and recuperating from the long day of travel by taking naps and eating homemade guacamole (courtesy of the amazing Taylor Karl), we set off for a highly recommended open mic near downtown in a place called “Corkscrew Wine Lounge”. We were warmly greeted by the hosts, Jen Deale and Chris Spicer, who were so hospitable and friendly, we were sad it would be our only night there. 

We played “Seven Years” to an intimate, attentive, and talented crowd, which mostly consisted of the performers for the night. 

 All in all, it was an excellent place to stay for awhile and I definitely recommend it!
We had made plans several days before to visit Multnomah Falls, but we had no idea what we were getting into when we arrived. For someone (such as myself) who has never hiked a real mountain trail a day in their life, and whose exercise regimen consists primarily of the 1 minute jog from the RV to the campground showers when it’s cold outside, hiking 5.5 miles up and down a steep incline was a bit more than I had bargained for, but incredibly rewarding nonetheless. Not only did we get to the tip top of the falls, but we went the extra mile (or in this case, extra 2.5 miles) to the top of the mountain itself. I was so impressed by the stamina of the guys. For three slim dudes, they can really hike like nobody’s business. I felt like a walrus, fighting for every breath, groaning with each painful step towards the summit, unable to speak, or even laugh at myself due to sheer exhaustion, but once we began to venture into the dense forest, the scenery immediately took my mind from the struggle. I have never been in a more terrifying place in all my life. A slip of the foot could have sent any of us sailing over the steep, harsh edge of the mountain, down hundreds of feet of enormous trees, jagged rocks, and wildly rushing rivers. I couldn’t help thinking the whole time “if my mom knew what we were doing, she would be praying so hard I think she would get an aneurism”. 

It was like the air itself was green, and every inch of moss, dirt, tree roots, gigantic ferns, even the rocks themselves were completely alive and breathing. 

it was AMAZING. 

 Forgive me for the lack of photos from the top. I attempted to capture the beauty of it but when I quickly realized how impossible that would be, I decided to just enjoy it with my eyes and let you all go see it for yourself someday!
So after playing at Mount Hood Community College the next day, we reluctantly bid a bitter farewell to the place we hope to someday call our home, and started our long trek Eastward.

 So now I’m going to warn you about making this drive in the winter: 

You can’t be prepared for every possible change in weather or road condition you may face, so if you have the ability to give yourself an extra day or two to arrive at your destination, DO IT. 

We were so blessed on our way in, to not have a single problem with the highways or weather. This time, however, the wind came. About halfway through Idaho, the gusts were around 35+mph, which seemed bad at the time but was absolutely nothing in comparison to the 65+mph crosswinds that caused highway patrol to close the interstate across most of Wyoming for over 13 hours. Understandably so, because when we finally got back on the road, there were more than just a few overturned, mangled transport trucks. I can only imagine what could’ve happened to an RV full of people!

We spent the night at a travel plaza and got plenty of rest, but lost several valuable hours of driving time, forcing us to spend the next 24 hours driving without stopping for more than a few minutes at a time to replenish our fuel. 

Today, we pulled into Louisville Kentucky after a long and restless night of driving and failed attempts to sleep in a loud, moving vehicle, and are waiting for a phonecall from our agents to let us know if we have the chance to perform at a showcase for 400+ schools tomorrow and we’re so psyched! Whether we get a slot or not, we’re just so thankful we made it safely and that God has it all planned out, so we don’t need to worry about playing or not. 

So be careful out west, everybody. The best thing you can do is to continually check the road conditions online, or by phone, and if possible, only drive in the daytime! 

Up next, Reading, PA! See you soon 😻

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