Wednesday, April 7, 2010

War of the World; or, Just Another Exploration of My Insanity.

Wow - it's been quite some time, no?! I, of course, have no good excuses for my long absence ... REALLY no excuse - I only work 3 days a week, Monday-Wednesday ... yes, that's right all you observant ones - this means I have Thursday-Sunday off every week; like I said, no excuses. So I've been sitting here for quite some time trying to decide what to write about: being accepted to my top choice for grad school, interviewing my grandmother about her life and her mother, signing up for a 1/2 marathon and the training process ... there is a lot that I could write about, updates and information, but I have finally landed on what I really want to discuss: aliens. Yes, that's right, I've been silent for months and my first post back is going to be about aliens - the little-green-"people"-running-around-sucking-our-brains-out kind.

Let me just say upfront that I believe aliens exist. I think it's ridiculous to think that we could be the only form of "intelligent" life in the entire universe/galaxy/alpha quadrant/etc. I am, of course, using "intelligent" very loosely here; after all, how intelligent can a species be if they resolve most disputes by killing each other, stockpile enough weapons to destroy their entire world, and continually rape and destroy their planet when they don't yet have the ability to move to and survive on another "M-class" planet once their home-world can no longer support life ... the moral failings of the human species aside, however, I simply can't imagine a cosmic mistake that would allow life to form on this planet alone and no where else ... NO WHERE ELSE ... and when "where else" is so vast that most of us can't even begin to comprehend it's size, you have to admit that the likelihood of Earth being the only home of complex life is, well, distinctly UNlikely.

So why, oh why, am I writing about aliens ... I'm sure it would make perfect sense if you could be inside my head and listen to the rambling train of thought that eventually brought me to the subject of aliens, but seeing as how anyone transporting into my mind would not only involve a wonder of science but likely scar that poor schmo for life, let's just say that it started with my happiness that the sun is out today and leave it at that.

But let's come to the real purpose of this post - exposing my insanity once again but admitting to my "unexplainable" events that I have, of course, decided to blame on aliens. Let's begin.

Last summer M and I went hiking/camping at Indigo Lake - it's a really short hike, a couple of miles in, with several great camping sites that remains pretty empty all summer. So we got there around mid-day, set up camp, hiked around, had HOURS to rest ... and then it started getting dark. I know that every few people have had the ... um ... pleasure of camping with me, but I am a horrible camper! I really dislike the great outdoors when it's completely dark and anything could be lurking past the campfire light ready to eat your face off; I would much rather hike a great distance, be so tired I can barely set up camp and don't even bother with a fire, and fall - completely exhausted - into my sleeping bag shortly after eating my freeze-dried hiking dinner. I don't understand people who LIKE to sit around the campfire until all hours of the night, drinking, being loud and NOT worrying about the animals ready to make them a mid-night snack! Okay, I'm a slightly better camper if there are more than just 2 people out there (and I'm speaking specifically to the people I'm planning to camp with this summer!!) So shortly after M made the campfire, I decided it was time for bed; it was 8:00!! Needless to say, I couldn't sleep - not only was I not tired AT ALL, but since I wasn't utterly exhausted my mind raced through all the possible ends that could meet us up in the mountains with no one else around ... after forcing M to get out of bed and come pee with me several times, he finally fell asleep; I, however, did not. 4 hours later I was still wide awake, starting to feel a little safer (due to the full moon shining down on the lake beside our campsite), and I heard it; my heart stopped, I held my breath and hoped to god that I was actually asleep and dreaming ... but there it was again ... a ping. It sounded much like a homing beacon and it was DIRECTLY in our camp! There were no other sounds at all, no footfalls, rustling ... nothing but the pinging, and it was moving through our camp. I could hear it move from one side of the camp to the other, then it went a little way from the camp, then it came back - a little while later I heard it very far away - a slight "ping" in the far distance. The next morning I truly expected to see our campsite utterly destroyed and ripped to shreds, but it was fine - nothing out of place, no animal marks or footsteps ... I had made up my mind the night before, as I was cowering in the tent, afraid to breath in case the pinging heard me and decided my breathing sounded tasty, that the ping had to be one of two things: a crazy, man-eating bear that the forest service (or whoever handles these things) had decided not to kill but wanted to warn unwary hikers/campers that the bear was coming and they should say their final prayers, or it was aliens. Obviously those were the only two reasonable explanations.

Us at M's hard-earned camp fire.

Sun-set, and about time for bed!

Fast forward about a month: M and I are at the coast for our anniversary. We found this great little hotel fully equipped with a kitchen, fireplace and nearly private beach and decorated in an "old west" theme ... it was actually a great place right south of Yachats called the See Vue, and if you don't mind staying so close to aliens you really should check it out (look, I've made it easy for you! See Vue). We spent a fabulous and unnaturally warm day at the coast playing on the beach and walking around Yachats. We made a great dinner that night (garlic curry salmon with steamed broccoli, in case you wanted to know), and afterward decided to sit out on the chairs overlooking the cliff down to the beach ... it was remarkably beautiful. We had been out for about an hour (and, complete disclosure here, we had been drinking, but only a glass or two of wine and neither of us was close to being drunk), when 4 bright globes of light appeared in the sky slightly to right of us; they hung there for awhile and one by one they faded away. The only things I know for certain is that it couldn't be car lights (the angle of the road was wrong and there were no clouds for lights to reflect off of), or boat lights (up too far from the water) or airplane/helicopter lights (there were too close for us not to hear the engine), and we both saw exactly the same thing. We both tried to pretend it didn't bother us for awhile, but quickly decided to go back inside. It wasn't necessarily scary, just completely unexplainable! This experience, much more than the first one, made me think of aliens ... there simply doesn't seem to be any other explanation.

The view from our room ... it really was amazing!

Our tasty meal ... yup, we took a picture!

Now, I'm sure that "believing" in aliens makes it easier to jump to that conclusion when strange things happen, but come on we've all had those experiences that lack explanation and our minds wonder if, just maybe, we've somehow come into contact with something not of this world ... and now you get to share that experience here!! I know you're thrilled to expose your "insanity" with me (and I KNOW some of you have those stories because I've heard them before), and look on the bright side, maybe we'll all be abducted at the same time and spend the summer being interrogated by the government or probed by little green men together ... a new twist on the idea of summer camp, sure, but as long as the aliens don't force me to play "buck/buck" with them, I'll be happy.

(Thanks to for their alien picture ... I didn't ask to use it, I just am, so you should thank them as well by visiting their website here!