Sunday, August 30, 2009

Trip report

Blueberries and huckleberries so ripe and sweet in the mountain sun that i could smell them as i hiked through the bushes. I had a blue tongue for most of the day.

Blue Grouse clicking and cooing in the bushes, allowing us the occasional thrill by crossing the path in front of us.

Sweat and rubber legs as our lungs struggled to cope with less oxygen.

Mount Baker from the Lake Ann trail. You feel as if you could almost reach out and touch it. Don't use your tongue though, it might stick.

Swirling patterns in the volcanic rock, enhanced by erosion and lichen.

Mountains have glaciers. The blue of the deepest ice crevasses looks painted on. We could hear pieces of the glacier breaking off and thundering down the mountain. We were glad to be observing this well away from the fall zone.

The terminus of the hike, and our lunching spot. Lake Ann with Mt. Shuksan in the back, looking all mountainy and volcanic.

Right after lunch, i decided to take the opportunity to pee in the bushes whilst no one else (except The Mister) was about.

So i head off the trail a little ways, drop
trou and commence liquid evacuation. All goes well, as in i don't pee on my pant leg or into my boot (yes, i have done these things, it ain't easy being a girl sometimes,) but when i stand and pull my pants back up, i inadvertently trap a black fly inside.

I don't know who was more surprised, me, at having a small buzzing insect near my tender parts, or him, being confronted with a huge wall o' ass.

He's dead now, because in this case, might makes right.

Friday, August 28, 2009


Night before last i woke myself up at 2:11 am just to stop the horrible dream i was having.

It involved slit throats and rape and blood and desperate fleeing and one person having complete power over another. I seem to not have been a participant in the dream, just an observer, as there were two main characters, neither of whom were me.

I lay awake for a few hours, trying to shake the dread i was feeling, trying to find something else to focus on. I did eventually go back to sleep, but the yukky feeling stayed with me through much of the day.

I am disturbed by me, wondering what kind of mind i would come up with this.........plot line.

I sorta hesitate to ask, but does this ever happened to you?

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Things there not here

Things in Ohio, not in Washington;

Fields of grasses...
Wonderful old barns...

Road kill. (lucky for you, no picture)

Teasels... (i don't know if that's what this is, but that's what i want to call it.)

Corn... (okay, there is corn here, but there is LOTS of corn there.)

Tent caterpillars... (again, no picture because they creep me out.)

CRICKETS! I love that noise they make at night.


Friday, August 21, 2009

Way to go Ohio

Tomorrow morning, Em and i are flying to Ohio. I am accompanying her to kick off the beginning of her sophomore year of college.

Did you hear that? Her sophomore year of college!

How the hell did that happen?

This year, in much contrast to last year, i am just staying long enough to get her stuff from storage and drive it to her dorm room. I am becoming obsolete, or i will be as soon as she is old enough to rent a car.

Since i am really just going as the wallet and the chauffeur, i am only taking one small purse-sized bag. I am not even going to take my laptop. I am a little anxious about leaving my precious behind, but i think i am far enough along in my rehab to take this momentous step. It's kind of refreshing to reduce my stuff down to the essentials, which, by the way, include my Kindle, my camera and my ipod. I have my priorities in order.

Mixed feelings about Em being gone again. I realize that i view these little trips off to college as temporary things, just something that has to be endured before she comes home where she belongs. Anyone else recognize the denial in that? Yeah.

But it will be quieter and neater around here. Not a very good trade off for her company, but hey, i'm looking for any good i can in this.

I will be leaving The Mister at home alone for the weekend. Wonder what will happen in my absence? Will the cat get fed? Will the dishwasher get run? Stay tuned....

Wednesday, August 12, 2009


Back lit field of fire weed and tow-headed babies (also known as mouse on a stick.)

I have never lost anyone close to me. At my age, i think that's unusual. I am lucky. I wonder how i'll feel about it when i do.

Or maybe i'm not lucky, because i have lost two grandmothers, two grandfathers, two-step grandmothers, a step-grandfather, a father-in-law and an Uncle.

And i wasn't close to any of them. It's not that i didn't like most of them, the ones i knew, but i never felt any personal sense of loss when they died, just a vague "Oh, that's sad." Maybe i have a deficit of feelings.

One of the members of my quilting group had colon cancer last year. She is a really nice woman, the kind who never swears or has a bad thing to say about anyone, and i like her anyway. She went through treatment and slowly recovered. Last week she went back for some tests and learned she has liver cancer. That terrifies me, for her, for her family.

I have feelings about this, about her, but i don't know what to do with those feelings, the helplessness. Of course, this is not about my feelings, it's about her, supporting her in any way i can.

I just don't know what those ways are.

Monday, August 03, 2009

Adventures in Hiking

It's been oppressively hot here lately, the kind of hot that has middle-aged women, myself included, wearing severely inappropriate outfits, and NO ONE frowns disapprovingly at us.

So i borrowed The Mister's car and took off to the mountains to go hiking with Kim.

We got up at the crack of 8:30, in time to eat the magnificent repast provided for us at the B&B where we stayed, then moseyed on out of the place at 10 am or so.

After stopping at the Ranger Station, we decided to tackle a hike that would require every fancy-assed gadget on The Mister's SUV in order to reach the trail head. High clearance, low gears and Hill Descent Control. WHEEEEEE!

As we were bumping along, about a mile below the trail head, we come across a white pickup, stuck in a ditch on the roadside, such that no one could get past in either direction.

And OH! GET THIS! The Stuck Truck is a FOREST SERVICE vehicle containing two mortified young ladies in their little forest service uniforms.

Kim and i get out, joining Grumpy Smoker Woman and Boring Man, who are blocked from above by Stuck Truck. (NOTE: Made up names reflect Kim's and my ability to stereotype people in an instant.)

Begin head scratching, requests for tow ropes and lots of 'helpful' advice. None of us has a tow rope. Boo!

A third vehicle stops, just below Kim and i, out comes The Silver Fox, and Bar Mitzvah Boy, with their little dog Shadow.

More head scratching.

Oblivious Dad, various small children, Crusty Grandpa

Two more vehicles pull up from below. Families pour out, complete with Wandering Grandpa, Frustrated Daughter-in-Law, Small Crying Children and Oblivious Dad.

The men and Kim cluster around the truck, giving advice, while the rest of us make stupid jokes and slap at the biting black flies.

I finally think to get my camera out. First intelligent thing i've done since stopping.

Attempts are made to rock Stuck Truck out of its rut. Gravel is fetched. Tree branches are laid down. Shovels are employed. All to no avail.

Wandering Grandpa wanders off and has to be pulled out of the road by Kim.

More cars pull up below. Groups issue from each car, including Crusty Grandpa and more small children. Some one has a chain, but no hooks. Oblivious Dad tries to TIE one end of the chain to Stuck Truck. I tuck a small child under each arm and move way far away as i know a tied chain will not hold and flying chains can be fatal.

Finally, maybe 45 minutes later, British Guy comes from below. Hallelujah! He has a towing cable!

Men take over, much fussing ensues.

British Guy, Silver Fox and Boring Man

I love men!

Cable is attached, in a complex scheme that somehow involves a toy carabiner from The Mister's key chain. I move further away.

Clear everyone out, she's gonna blow!

Frustrated Daughter-in-Law, Silver Fox, Bar Mitzvah Boy, British Guy, Wandering Grandpa and Mortified Ranger Girl.


Frustrated Daughter-in-Law, Oblivious Dad, British Guy, Mortified Ranger Girl and Kim.

Wandering Grandpa's wife wonders where wandering Grandpa is.

It was a great shared experience. Since we were all heading the same way, we nodded and smiled at one another as we moved along with our day.

So, on with the hike. The flowers are in full bloom.
This flower is a Fringed Grass of Parnassus.

I'm using the wet bandanna under the hat trick. I don't look stupid do i?

Kim, rolling in the snow like a frisky husky dog. Did i mention it was hot?

It was all worth it.