Stranded – Day 5: Escape from Medford!


Hey everyone.  Since we’re stuck here with a loaner Mercedes, we decided to take a road trip today.  We headed from Medford up to the Portland area to visit Johnson RV in Sandy, OR to have a look at the Leisure Travel Vans Unity 24IB.  The Unity – and specifically the Island Bed model – is on our short list for our next RV.

The ride from Medford to Portland is about 5 hours with stops.  That’s 10 hours of driving there and back.  During the day’s driving, I couldn’t help but make a few observations about driving in Oregon.  This will probably get me flamed, but here goes:

  1. I’m not going to say everyone in Oregon drives slowly… but I will say I usually ride my bike faster.
  2. The speed limit never gets above 65 – even when it should be 90
  3. OK.  There’s no getting around it – I’ve got to say it.  Everyone drives REALLY FREAKING SLOW!
  4. The people you see driving fast all have California plates.
  5. There are tons of law enforcement out to make sure that everyone drives like they just had a lobotomy.
  6. You can take the right-of-way even when it’s not yours; because everything is moving so slow it doesn’t matter.

I’m really not kidding about the slow driving (remember, I was in a loaner Mercedes – not an RV).  I was so completely dumbfounded at why everyone would deliberately drive 45 in a 65 zone I had to Google it.  Let’s just say I’m not the only one who’s made this observation.  It’s almost as if the drivers are afraid of something.  The people in Oregon were super nice to us, but they all drive intolerably slowly.  Enough said.

We will have a video posted soon about my day with the Leisure Travel Vans Unity.  I actually spent about 2 and a half hours measuring, examining, prodding, searching, climbing, and crawling around it.  The folks at Johnson RV were incredibly nice to us, and the Unity is still on our short list.

Unity 24 IB

After that, we went to the Nike Factory store downtown.  Weirdly – there was a parking space on the street 6 feet in front of the insanely busy store.  Elbow to elbow inside the store, but empty parking space right in front.  Again, I was dumbfounded.  But then I realized that all the locals probably saw that space a half an hour ago, and were still trying to drive to it.  Suckers!  The Nike Factory Store is cool, but not as cool as the employee store down in Beaverton I got to go to once.

After the Nike store, we hit a small local Thai restaurant and ate dinner on the patio.  From there, it was gassing up and heading back to Medford.

Well, almost.  We had seen a place in Portland called Voodoo Donuts.  And I really shouldn’t mention it on a fitness website, but… you gotta live a little too, right?  Well, anyway, the line at the Voodoo donuts in Portland was crazy-out-the-door-long.  So we didn’t stop there.

Voodoo DonutsBut we learned there was a satellite location in Eugene, which was on our way back to Medford.  Against our better judgment, we made a detour to Voodoo Donuts in Eugene, and got two donuts and a cup of coffee.  I had the coffee because I was driving.  I don’t know what happened to those donuts…



James is a former rocket scientist, a USA Cycling certified coach, and lifelong fitness buff. When he's not driving the RV, or modifying the RV (or - that one time - doing both at once), you can find him racing bicycles, or building furniture, or making music. In his spare time, he works for a large IT company.


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