I had really wanted to say more about Kalama, originally. I'm pretty sure I made some grand promises in my post when I originally got here. Here I am, staring down the barrel of my last week at Camp Kalama RV Park and I never managed to get out to the Columbia Inn. I never managed to say anything about the totem poles. At least I mentioned Twilight. I'm sure that reference will age well.
Kalama isn't a big town. I've gotten the sense that everyone around here knows everyone else around here. The local burger joint still employs kids from the high school. It's the kind of place where, on the one hand, some small sliver of the American dream can still be found. On the other hand, like many small towns I'm sure their best and brightest have a tendency to leave for the greener fields represented by larger cities. It's the kind of place that, if I were looking for somewhere to settle down, I'd honestly consider. People are nicer here. The world moves slower here.
Except when you have only three months, and spend a solid chunk of that living in someone else's house or a hotel room in Seattle!
So what can I say. Spring has sprung in the Pacific Northwest, and for the first time in my three months at Camp Kalama I felt compelled to walk around the property. It was almost my last chance to do it, and I found the camp delightful. I'm sure it's much busier at the height of fishing season but at the moment it's fairly quiet. Most of the smaller camp sites are empty, and the ones that are full are mostly longer-term residents so there hasn't been a lot of in and out traffic yet.
There's a delightful little breakfast joint on the property called the Fireside Cafe. I've been there twice now, and been pleased both times. The food was good, the portions were generous, the staff were prompt. It's the kind of place that I'm kind of sad I didn't stop in earlier, but my stomach and wallet are both glad I waited.
It's the kind of place that I would consider stopping at on my way back through just to have another breakfast there. They're that good. I've tried most of the restaurants around Kalama and some of what Longview has to offer, and the only place that I think I'd go out of my way to visit again was the Fireside Cafe.
I ended up here almost by accident. I didn't expect it to be hard to find an RV park in Portland in the winter, and boy was I wrong. But I think even with the occasional frustration it's been a happy accident. This is the kind of place that I never would have found living in a house. I just never would have had a reason to come up here, stop, meet these people, see these things. This is the kind of experience that I look forward to looking back in ten years down the road as to why being a nomad is worth it.
Thanks, Kalama. You've been swell.