Saturday, July 15, 2017

PCC 2017, Pt. 1: I Found You Again

The air smelled of sweat and slightly stale chips dipped in cheese sauce.

We congregated in a semicircle, not completely understanding what had played out before our very eyes.

Cries of "Did that really just happen?" mixed with the ever pungent taste of feeling like you've been denied something that was rightfully yours.


It really had just happened. 

The All-Stars Basketball Game had ended with a score of 51 to 51.

A tie.

With the business end of a bright orange trumpet pressed up against my neck, a fleeting thought crossed my mind as Elder Morton warned the girls I was standing with to avoid taking pictures with us ugly boys.

How did I get here?

Let's go back.



I had started to come for several consecutive years, but somewhere along the line, I stopped attending.

It wasn't that I didn't value PCC.

I had met my first girlfriend at PCC.

I had made and maintained so many friends that I still call the best of the best to this day, at PCC.

I can call back to numerous sermons, like "Hotdog Distractions" and "Preparing the Welcome Mat", that I will never forget hearing preached, at PCC.

It just somehow slipped away.

But not this year.

This year, I felt a burning in my soul.

I thought it was indigestion, but it soon became evident that the only remedy to this blistering flame was a visit to...

Pacific Coast Camp.


One day we were just talking about it.

The next morning, Caleb and I were getting up at the ungodly hour of 4:30 to heave to in Caleb's car.

It was quite a serene ride, as I remember it.

Nessun Dorma by Chris Botti playing on the radio, the pink morning clouds giving way to the rosy blue sky.

We arrived at the Blue Lot economy parking and drove until we found a suitable friend for Caleb's Chrysler 300; a Ford Fiesta ST (parked to the right).

Caleb claimed he'd remember what letter we parked by.

I took a picture anyway.

We were flying.

I mean we were booking it.

No, I mean like we got through security in a flash.

Turns out, that was to be the only thing quick about our day.

We arrived at our gate with hours to spare and set about getting breakfast, catching up on text messages, and otherwise enjoying not being at work.

Until the announcement came over the waiting area intercom.

"Yes, all passengers on Southwest flight 1812 with service to Los Angeles, your flight is going to be delayed due to your plane being behind schedule. Your new departure time is 12:00 pm."

It was 7:45. Our flight had originally been leaving at 9:30 am. Now we had almost a 5-hour wait until our plane left.

"Well, at least it can't get worse!"

No wait, it CAN.

Our plane eventually got into port but because of some engine troubles, they were snagging a plane from a San Fransisco flight and rerouting those travelers to yet another flight.

Which means that we weren't leaving PDX until 1:30.


That meant we had some time on our hands.

Seeing as you can only argue with your rental car agency about the logic behind the fact that just because you want to change your car rental pickup time to a couple hours later, results in your price for the weekend rental jumping up to $3,300 dollars, I had to find something to do.

So I decided to explore the half of PDX that (A.) I had not had time to see, and (B.) Because I have never flown internationally, I hadn't had the chance to see.

Thankful that that day I had chosen my Cole Haan Zero Grand Wingtips to wear, I loaded up my backpack and set off walking.

A few of you international travelers that have been to PDX will recognize this view.

I had no idea that my airport had taxidermy,

a statue dedicated to our late Governor, Victor G. Atiyeh,

and a fully restored classic Corvette in a restaurant that I could only see the back of without going back through security.

I've definitely walked further, but I can safely say I've never walked that far in an airport before.

After an arduously long time, they announced it was finally time to leave. 

I didn't let my hopes get too high until I actually walked down the gangway, cause the Southwest agents had pulled this stunt before.

But it turned out, they were serious this time.

Berry Mary, arguably the best lip balm that Scrubs Outlet produces. 

Did I ever tell you how it got its name? Nay! It's creation??

I mentioned the last post about the layover the Marchbanks had in Portland, and that we visited Blue Star Donuts.


There was this amazing donut we tried, called the Raspberry Rosemary Buttermilk.

Hesitant to have those two flavors running concurrently in the same bite, but after tasting it, soon decided it was the best donut I had ever tasted in my life. The rosemary and raspberry melted together is an amazing duo of milky heaven. 

It even induced Stephanie into a gourmet donut stupor. 

"Give me morrrrre."

So I got to thinking. 

What would be better than a lip balm that put those two flavors together and reminded me of this splendidly tasty day??

After some discussion with Stephanie, some drippings of essential oils, and some outside input on the name, Scrubs released the Berry Mary flavor and never looked back. 

Just for me. 

Or something like that. 


We landed without further fanfare and as it seemed to be the theme of the day, waited around for a car rental bus that almost didn't come, but obviously eventually did. 

Pulling up to the car rental agency, we were greeted with a line of waiting patrons that snaked through the office and from the outside, to around the corner. 

Like I said, the theme of the day. 

Lest I end this post on a dreary note, I will regale yet one more story. 

When I got up to the counter, it came out that they didn't have any cars left available in the category that I had reserved. Instead, they were going to have to swap me to another comparably priced car.

But here's the silver lining. 

Had I gotten the car that I originally reserved, I would not have been able to cart around the awesome crew that we hung with on Saturday, the day after camp ended. 

I knew something good would come out of the mix-up, I just didn't know I'd have to wait until camp was over to find out just how. 

When they handed me the keys to my Toyota 4Runner, I just smiled. 


It had been a long day, and we weren't going to make it in time for church. 

But we were here and headed for Ventura.

And nothing could've stopped us from being happier than a chubby kid in a candy store.

Cause PCC was just ahead. 


1 comment

  1. Sounds like you had a fun day! I'll have to plan on going to PCC next year.


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