After we left the Heritage Museum, we decided to spend a little more time exploring Astoria, coins jingling in pockets, as if we hadn’t just spent an hour learning how dangerous the city could be. This is a lesson that would soon be firmly cemented for all of us, for next on the list was a visit to the Goonies House.
Outside the Goonies House was the Goonies Welcome Wagon Cat, who stood out front and mrowled to be petted. Rachel complied with his demanding mrowls, and he loved it, up until the point where he didn’t and bit her hard enough to draw blood.
We are still waiting for the tests to come back to see if she’s contracted Goonies Rabies. The cat has now been named Bitey Goonie and as soon as one of us is brave enough to go back and put the nametag around his neck, he’ll be Bitey Goonie until his owners notice. While we were at the Goonies House, we heard a distinct “OR OR OR” coming from the direction of the waterfront. There were three distinct possibilities, and we decided to investigate rather than get Rachel some medical attention: 1. There were sea lions on the waterfront. 2. Someone was playing one of those ‘nature soundtrack’ relaxation cds VERY loudly. 3. There were once sea lions on the waterfront, but they were driven away by tourists mimicking their noises, which attracted more tourists who then made sea lion noises, which attracted MORE tourists and so on and so forth until they managed to attract us. On the way to the waterfront, however, we needed to make a pitstop on Lief Erickson drive so I could molest Richard Nixon.
Further down the pier, there was a dock upon which quite a few were sunning themselves. I don’t know how the owner of the boat intends to get to the boat without being spectacularly mauled–perhaps that’s why the boat was for sale. We ventured down the ramp to check them out more closely, which is of course when they turned and presented us with sea lion nutsack, the animal kingdom version of mooning. They were in general unperturbed by our proximity, occasionally casting a baleful glance in our direction when we made too many obnoxious sea lion noises, but mostly just napping and looking as if they were either begging for a tummy rub or to be saddled and ridden across the seas. However, I think most things are looking to be saddled and ridden, and I admit to that bias.
Eventually someone wandered by and muttered something about a ten thousand dollar fine for being too close to the animals and we dashed back up the ramp so fast you would have assumed a sea lion on a skateboard was hot on our heels. The only signs present were “DANGER: Sea lions”, which is the sort of danger that I can suss out for myself. That’s visible danger. Clear and present danger, if you will. Furthermore, some of us are meant to be dragged to the bottom of the sea, strapped to the back of a furious animal, or gored with yellow teeth, and those sorts of danger signs prevent the sort of tragically hilarious stories we would all love to read in the newspaper, if anyone actually ever read physical copies of the paper anymore. However, a “DANGER: $10,000 fine for getting too close to sea lions” sign would allow me to weigh my decisions more carefully. Of the two, I find the latter more fearsome.