Thursday, April 29, 2010


Men at Work

I think I am going to start a new series of posts--probably on Thursdays--most Thursdays but not all.

Men (and Women) at Work!

I have a few in my archives and will keep an eye out for others.

In this case, as I drove by this morning, this city worker was flushing the fire hydrants.

A companion series will be Volunteers in Action. I know I could probably go  a few months just on those.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

ABC Wednesday--O is for...

What a sweetie! Wonder who she is.

Coat to the left--Hat to the right.

Headed to Camp.
Not sure who is driving at Grandpa(hubby)'s Grandpa's place of business.

Just a few friends at Grandpa's Dad's place of business.  He's wearing the tartan tie.                     
This is ABC Wednesday--O---Old Photos from my hubby's family.

My World changes

I may have posted a version of this photo back when I took it about a year and a half ago. We had been camping at Maryhill State Park, down on the Columbia River south of Goldendale, Washington. The bare hills, an occasional cow and a power line. But what is that headed up the road? Whatever it is, it's really really long. Check out the size of it in relation to the pilot car just behind it.

The hills are no longer quite so bare. (This view is from the highway a couple of miles above the park, looking south instead of north.) It catches a few of the wind machines that now power up up there in the winds.
Local opposition to new wind farms in some areas is strong. You can see that it definitely does change the landscape. I can see the point--NIMBY--but I can see the beauty in the lines of these huge constructions as well, and the sheer immensity of them is impressive.
Powerful silhouettes.
Queued up straight...

I found this Washington state blogger who had a great informative post about the wind machines the other day. He mentions the experimental wind machines in the hills near this area some years ago. Those machines have long been dismantled, but the experiment must have been viewed to be successful--witness the area today. Have a look at his blog and post here.

Monday, April 26, 2010

It's Geometry Monday! Dome




a. a vault, having a circular plan and usually in the form of a portion of a sphere, so constructed as to exert an equal thrust in all directions.

b. a domical roof or ceiling.

c. a polygonal vault, ceiling, or roof.
Capitol Dome,
Olympia, Washington
It's Geometry Monday!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Sunday's Psalm--Fourth Sunday of Easter

We are his people, the sheep of his flock.

Sing joyfully to the LORD,

 all you lands;

serve the LORD with gladness;

come before him with joyful song.

We are his people, the sheep of his flock.

Know that the LORD is God;

he made us,

 his we are;

his people,

the flock he tends.

We are his people, the sheep of his flock.

           The LORD is good:; his kindness endures forever, and his faithfulness, to all generations.
We are his people, the sheep of his flock.

from Psalm 100
music class
birds in the air
overlooking the American River
and Dave's sheep

Back to the Beach Weekend for a Reflection

The beach was busy last weekend because it was clamdigging season. (You saw the young lad's catch of razor clams, didn't you?) Wet sand, lowering sun and people on the beach made neat reflections viewed through the vegetation on the cliff above.

I've switched out my profile picture for this reflected one of my hubby and me.

Visit James at Newtown Daily Photo to see others who have reflections this weekend.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Beach (Sky)Watch as the Evening Wears On

ship at sea
sun on the sea
pup at the sea

BeachSkyWatch is brought to you weekly on Friday or thereabouts at

Sense of Place

Have you ever read a book where the setting is so--I was going to say well described, but that isn't even it. Made so completely real --that you feel like you are there?

The first time I really became aware of being aware of this was a number of years ago when I picked up a mystery--my genre of choice--at the library. The author was Corrine Holt Sawyer and the title may have been Murder in Black and White. As I read I had a sense of deja vu. The names may have been changed, but this story was taking place in my home town. The characters were residents of the retirement home there overlooking the Pacific. The trails that led down to the beach were there. I was walking into town with them. The commuter train that went through was there.

I took a copy to my mother the next time I visited. (I got the love of mysteries from her, so there was no problem persuading her to tackle a new author.) She still lived in that hometown, and as she read, she would break out laughing. Not only was the setting so real, she could identify the characters -- the REAL characters--that the book characters were based on. Now, the author lived on the opposite coast, and nowhere in her biography is there a hint that she had lived at any time in my home town. How did she get it so exactly--so real?

I began to be more aware of the settings of novels I read, and the more the setting drew me in, the better the reading experience. There are some Seattle authors whos sense of place is so inviting that I can't put them down. Best known is probably J. A. Jance, whose J. P. Beaumont mysteries really take you downtown to some of Seattle's well known and lesser known haunts. Beaumont, in his earlier days, liked to hang out at the Doghouse restaurant. A friend visiting her kids in Seattle, when asked where she would like to go requested a meal at the Doghouse. The kids were totally puzzled. But to her delight, she found it to be just as seedy as it was described.

Jance's other series features Joanna Brady, sheriff of Cochise County, Arizona. As it happens, my brother lived there for a couple of years when he was stationed at Fort Huachuca and I have a friend there. Though I don't know the area as well, I sometimes feel I could just drive straight to anywhere mentioned as easily as I could here at home. My brother sent me this picture from a recent trip through the area. He captioned it "Joanna Brady's Office".

Back to Seattle, another Seattle Mystery writer is Earl Emerson. My eyes widened once when the body in one of his murders was found by the river in the next town over from us. I was ready to go down and join the search. On another occasion we had gone camping in one of the state parks along Puget Sound. It was rather freaky a couple of weeks later when I read one of his mysteries and the perp was picked up in campsite #70. I remember that number specifically, because we weren't far from that campsite, and there had been some sort of event that had drawn the police to the campground when we were there.

That can sure creep you out.

G. M. Ford can also bring the Seattle setting alive. I'm currently rereading one of his books in which a lot of the action takes place in a historic upscale hotel. The name is changed, but we know where we are! His character knows the ins and outs of the city because his dad was once the mayor. But a lot of his friends, whom he usese for surveilence, come from the homeless population.

When we went to Alaska last fall, I took along one of Dana Stabenow's kate Shugak mysteries. Talk about really being in the place. I picked up others while there and have read nearly all of them since. Stabenow really brings you into the interior, and gives you the sense of outsideness that Kate feels when she is in the "big" city of Anchorage.  Reading her mysteries brings me back to our trip and our adventures .

The settings don't even have to be real places in order to take you there. or take you to a place you know. Reading or watching one of the Harry Potter stories takes my husband back to his boarding school--which he claims was just like Hogwarts minus the ghosts and wizarding.

And don't you just want to bike down Ittibittiwassee Road with Jim Qwilleran and discuss his latest column in the Moose County Something over a squnk water at Tipsy's? (Lillian Jackson Braun's The Cat Who...series)

As we get ready for a trip to Scotland,  England,  and Wales this summer, I am looking forward to some of the locations in Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series, wandering through James Herriot's Yorkshire, a visit to Shrewsbury Abbey where Brother Cadfael tended the gardens (I had read them all before they appeared on PBS.) and a sight of the moors where Sherlock Holmes tracked the Hound of the Baskervilles.

What books have brought places alive for you?

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

ABC Wednesday--N is for....

So last night I was telling my husband that it would be ABC Wednesday N and I had no idea what to post. His very creative response was Nothing--N is for Nothing.  Well, not for nothing have hundreds of bloggers made it to the sixth round of the ABCs and never have I seen one of them post nothing.

NO! We regularly post the normal. And that is exactly what I am going to do--
Go normal!

Only problem is, in order to do that you have to find some definition of normal.

At the beach where we visited over the weekend, it is apparently normal for huge tree trunks brought in by the ocean by extreme high tides to hang suspended from the cliffs. Perhaps it was not brought in by the tides, but grew there and fell as the normal erosion of the cliffside took place over the years.

We also had normal weather for April on this trip.

What is your normal mode of transportation? Do you like to go back seventy or eighty years like these guys?

Fun! but I'm not sure I would be  comfortable in the old car in normal freeway traffic. Those big rigs swishing by can be scary as it is.
Of course, the norm for traffic at home is sometimes more like this:

The time is coming up that my normal day must include quite a bit of this as I work up to near twenty miles of walking in a day--a norm for me for the next 3-Day for the Cure which I will do in November in San Diego. 

All in a NORMAL day's blogging!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

My World Tuesday--Beach Trip

We went to the beach for Washington Coastal Clean-up Day. This day is set aside every April inviting the public to come to Washington's beaches to pick up litter and marine debris. Last spring we participated for the first time under gorgeous sunny skies. The weather was less cooperative this year, as the rains came down down down -- well, and sideways as well when the winds were blowing. Still, some one thousand volunteers cleaned the beaches of tons of debris.

The evening before the clean-up was lovely, and we did some beach wandering. Here are some of the evening's sights. I did mention winds, didn't I? This is the effect of the wind on the trees on the bluff.
When we approached this big hunk of driftwood it appeared like a turtle. From this angle, I see an anteater. What do you see?

There was some serious sandcastle construction going on on the beach that evening.

It was razor clam season this weekend, too. There were a lot of clammers in the campground. This young clammer was happy to let me take a picture of his catch. (Click to enlarge this photo. Really, do. Look at those clams sticking their necks out.)

Litter and debris pick-up was our purpose, and this family was conscientious about finding whatever they could. Our own haul varied. I found a propeller. My husband picked up a whiskey bottle (Last year it was Russian vodka.) We found a variety of fishing floats of various sizes. Wire and bits of rope, hunks of Styrofoam from floats, and mysterious pieces of blue plastic.

That's My World this week. What's happening in your world?

Sunday, April 18, 2010