I heard today that there is a rare type of fly that lays its eggs on the surface of Crater Lake. The eggs sink all the way to the bottom of the lake where they hatch, then over the next two years, the fly goes through various stages of its life cycle before finally emerging into the air as an adult to mate, lay new eggs and die. Hearing this story got me thinking about the whole concept of time, and choice. Do the fly larvae ever think “hey, it’s pretty cool down here at eighteen hundred feet, why bother going any higher?” Or does the adult fly think “I’ve arrived at last! Forget the last two years. Bring on Tuesday!”
Today, we have turned back north and started our journey through mid-west Oregon. The great thing is we don’t have anything much on the agenda, and don’t have to travel as far as usual. So, we’ll be able to spend more quality time doing whatever it is we actually do today. First stop is Crater Lake. According to B&B host Jim, Crater Lake is the ‘must see’ spot in this part of the world. It’s not far away, and we’ve already allowed time for the diversion, so off we go.
In what seems like no time at all, we’re leaving the Rim Road and pulling into the visitor centre car park. Ok, a few quick snaps from that spot where all the people are congregating and we’ll be on our …… Wow! The first look at the lake takes your breath away. “You know, we may as well stay here for a bit. We can grab lunch at the over-priced tourist shop, then get going in a while.”
…. It’s now 2:00pm. We’re just leaving the lake. Not only have we taken about a million pics from a hundred spots, we actually stood around to listen to Ranger Rachel give her twenty minute talk about how the lake was formed (oh and also the story about the flies). So – once upon a time there was this big volcano. Then, only 7,000 years ago, it had pretty well overdone the whole spewing magma thing, and Boom – it collapsed, forming the big hole that now holds the lake. The crazy thing is that this particular Boom was about three times more powerful than the Krakatoa Kaboom, and we had never even heard of it.
Well, that was a good day. Now we just have the two hour drive to the B&B and we’re done … hey, what’s that Lava Centre sign? Do we have time to stop? Maybe we should just stick to the plan and keep rolling on. We realise that the only deadlines we have are the ones we set ourselves. Ok, let’s have a quick look.
… It’s now 5:30PM. The rangers at the Lava Centre info centre have packed up and gone home. We’ve just returned from an hour or so wandering amongst fields of untidy black rocks that look like the results of a really big cut-price landscaping job. The car is only fifty metres away, but we’re too busy watching little ground squirrels hopping about nearby. We don’t really have to be at the B&B before 6:30 do we?
…. Arrived at the B&B and checked in. The place is set in a lovely rural area looking out at Smith Rock. Our host tells us it’s the biggest single rock in the world (she hasn’t see Uluru), and asks whether we’re going to visit it this afternoon. It’s only a short drive. We look at the relaxing chair on the back porch. Then, we remember the story of the flies.
… It’s now 8:00pm. We’ve just returned from a great walk down to the base of the valley at Smith Rock ……