Thursday, June 30, 2011

You Should Thai It

Yesterday, Gene and I drove into Kennewick to try lunch at Hoang's Saigon Restaurant which is located on W. Columbia Drive. We usually buy our noodles and other staples for stir fry at the Asian store connected to this restaurant. It's been almost 3 years since we moved here and just never made the time to go there for lunch.  We will definitely be going back. While the owners have not wasted money and energy on the atmosphere, one should never ever judge a book by its cover. Authentic. Great. Food.

We killed two birds with one stone in our trip. I have been wanting to venture into some new Thai dishes at home but didn't have the right ingredients. The book pictured here was bought at our favorite Thai place and the owner has made the recipes really easy to follow.  I think. I'll get back to you on that.  

I'm making Pad Thai tonight. I'm not venturing into Tofu just yet, however, I do love Tofu when it's made right ~ fried, that is.

I also bought some dark rye flour today as I'm hoping to try my hand at a loaf of homemade rye bread.  I've never made it before but it's one of Gene's favorite things in the whole world.  If it all works out, I'll be posting photos and recipes to my other blog, What's Cooking.

Do you have a recipe you've been saving and wanting to try? 

love, susan

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Queen of Take-Back (Rant!)

Ranting today. This cooler has been used maybe 3 times since we bought it last year.  I couldn't believe it when I saw how the plastic clasp cracked and is hanging by a thread. I will be making a call to the sporting goods store where I bought it to see how they will  remedy this situation.  Lately, I have had a pretty good run of luck in returning faulty items for a full refund.  If the store doesn't replace it or refund my money, I will be writing a nice letter to Igloo corporate headquarters.  I am the queen of take-back.

While this may seem trivial and silly to some, I'm here to say that second-rate stuff is unacceptable to me. I think we paid $54.00 for this cooler although I'm pretty sure I don't have the receipt. I turned it over this morning, thinking it would say "Made in China". Believe me when I say my jaw dropped when I discovered it was made in the USA.  Houston, Texas to be exact.

While camping Monday night, Gene's daughter was ranting about a battery-type lantern (Coleman) she bought 3 years ago. She bought one for her dad for Father's day this year but warned him that he'll need to plug it in about once a month to keep the battery charged, even if he is not using it. She found this out the hard way. She hadn't used her lantern all winter, for obvious reasons,  and she plugged it in to charge it since we would be camping and it wouldn't take a charge. She called the company and the nice lady on the phone told her that Coleman just assumes everyone knows that you should plug it in periodically to help it keep its charge.  Really???? It doesn't say that in the manual.  Who keeps charging their camping lantern year round? She paid $30 for it and it came with a 5-year warranty. 

I suspect most people don't take the time to complain about such things.  I'm not one of those people.  I hate crappy stuff. I hate throwing my money away. To me, it's like taking a handful of money and just throwing it in the garbage can.

I may have written this already but I recently returned the camera Gene gave me for my birthday in May. I had taken about 400 pictures and I wasn't happy with the photo quality. The store gladly refunded all my money except for a $30 restocking fee.  I wrote a nice letter to the corporate office in Illinois and about 5 days later I got a phone call from the local store and they bent over backwards to refund the restocking fee. I was impressed by that.

Look ... here's the bottom line. If we continue to accept crappy stuff, that's what we'll keep getting. When I worked for J.C. Penney about 30+ years ago, in training we learned that the company lost only about 3% in shrinkage (returns). They told us to always happily refund the customer's money, for whatever reason. They knew that if a customer was unhappy, that customer would tell as least five people about their experience.  What company needs that kind of reputation these days? That lesson has stayed with me.

Have you had a similar situation?  

love, susan

Monday, June 27, 2011

Another Week Older

A camping Haiku

Three hours today
Driving, talking, hiking
Some more ghost stories.

We're headed out for an overnight camping adventure to take our grandson home. We're going to meet his mom more than half-way at a camp ground where we'll all go hiking and spend the night. It is a 3-hour drive to get there.

We always have such a grand time together. I was thinking last night that it sure takes a lot of time to get ready for camping. I don't know why. But it sure is worth it. I usually grumble about it but I'm always so happy when we finally get there and after the tent is pitched and I've got my camping chair strategically placed, I sit there and just feel so happy to be sitting in the trees.

Last night, I baked a double batch of cookies and some zucchini bread. I cut up some fruit and made a mental list of what I need to put in the cooler. Probably a big mistake to not have written some things down. I was too tired to think about it.

This morning, I'm rested and really looking forward to seeing the kids we saw just a week ago. We're all a week older.  I think about that a lot.  Every day is precious.

Gotta go and get breakfast started.  love, susan

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Terms and Conditions

This page left blank intentionally. 

My dad was a union worker before he retired. My husband is a retired union worker. I don't remember the first time I ever heard the term "I'm going to take some R & R" but for a long time I really didn't know what it meant, although I knew they weren't talking about whiskey.  Why would you announce you were "taking whiskey"? You'd just take drink it.  Have you ever heard terms you didn't get?

The first time I saw a stack of papers that I had to copy as a legal secretary, I found the above term "This page left blank intentionally" to be the funniest damn thing I'd ever seen.  It is self-explanatory but still .... really?  It seems those attorney types are always looking for the missing piece of paper that might have made the difference in a case. One would not want to assume a blank page was originally another important page that got stuck to yet another page in the copy process.  I know .... it's enough to make a secretary insane.

I have a friend who one time pointed out to me that there are instructions on the bottom of candles.  Really?  I had to look.  There really are instructions. Wow.

I'm afraid my page is a little blank today ... it's been kind of a long week and I didn't take many photos. So, forgive me while I take a little R&R (and I don't mean the whiskey kind), and leave this page practically blank.

love, susan

R&R = Rest and relaxation 

Saturday, June 25, 2011

What the World Needs .....

What the world needs is a lot more hugs and old Corvettes.

I was reading my friend Jane's blog this morning (see Unexpected Embrace) and it really warmed my heart. It reminded me of the unexpected embrace I received at the airport last Thanksgiving when I stood there crying a river of tears, saying goodbye to my son and his wife. A nice woman we had been talking to earlier came over and just placed her arms around me in an unexpeced embrace.  I'm so happy I am in a place where I can receive love today. Which reminded me ...

of a time when I worked at the mental health center in Fairbanks with my friend Jane (mentioned above).  I've written about this before but I don't think I can write enough about love.  I loved the job I held when I worked at the center which helped people with chronic mental illnesses. It was the first job ever where hugging was allowed and actually encouraged. We had a great team of people who served a population that requires intense services and the work is hard but, oh, so rewarding. When I left that job some 20 years ago, I never found another work place where I could enjoy a hug with my co-workers until I worked at hospice. It's just not done in the legal field.  I don't know why. I don't know who made the stupid, unwritten rules.  I just know in my heart of hearts that if there was a little more hugging going on, there would be less stress.  I know it because I've experienced it. How can you treat someone badly that you've hugged?

Thanks Jane, for the reminder that there is still a lot of love in the world. I totally got a warm fuzzy reading your post .... I needed a virtual hug today.

love, susan

P.S. I shot this Corvette going down the avenue late yesterday afternoon. Gene told me it's his very favorite car in the whole world. Isn't it a beauty?



Friday, June 24, 2011

Light 'em Up

I love pink cars. Don't you? I'm not sure I'd really want to drive one but when I see them, I am drawn to them. 

This beautiful classic pink Cadillac really drew my attention last night at the car show.  Thursday night is the night all the cars show up from everywhere and get entered for the weekend show. I think there is a cruise tonight. For anyone who has never been to a car show, "the cruise" is where many of the car owners start from one side of town and cruise their cars in a parade, of sorts, to the place where they eventually park them for the show the next day. "The cruise", in my opinion, is the best part of a car show. You get to hear the ponies running.  Sometimes, a street rod owner will "light 'em up" ~ that's street slang for spin the tires and make 'em squeal and smoke. Well, that's my favorite part!!! They are not supposed to do that but there's always a rebel or two in the line-up who succumb to the crowd's begging them to light 'em up!

Although I love old cars, I'm not crazy about car shows. I think they're boring and quite frankly when I see my husband put his hands in his pockets and sort of walk around a certain car and start talking to the owner, I know I'm going to be standing there, looking like a dumb girl for way longer than I want to. Come on, I say.  There are 600+ cars here, are you going to talk to every single owner?  I know what he's thinking at this point. I should have left her at home.

Last night we had our grandson with us. He seemed to take a bit of an interest in all the old cars, especially when one of them drove by and he noticed they had a set of "balls" hanging off the back.  Tacky, I say. He was impressed. (I'm smiling here.  Hey, he's 13!)

Uh oh. I just noticed the grandson has his hands in his pockets in this photo. A chip off the old block?  Perhaps.  I wonder what they are thinking when they stare into the mouth of an old pickup truck so intently with their hands in their pockets?

I can tell you what I was thinking.  Are we done yet? My back is killing me. I didn't wear the right shoes for walking and standing. Can we go home now? Gene could see it in my eyes.

I try to find the best thing in every situation. There were some dogs at the car show last night. This little cutie was in some kind of classic pickup truck. I couldn't tell you anything about the truck but I was so glad to have something to catch my attention. 

I also noticed most people were smiling last night. We've had a particularly cooler and rainier spring than normal and since the weather has brightened up, so have people's spirits. We started at the concert in the park, where a big crowd of people showed up and then went over to the car show. There was also a Harley Davidson "Hogs & Dogs" event along with Randy Travis doing a concert on the river last night. Despite all of these events happening on the same night, it seemed there were plenty of people to go around.  I love summer, don't you?
Huge crowd!
This is a sight hound. Not pretty but they are wonderful canines.

What's your favorite kind of car?
Lots of chrome, huh?
 love, susan


 

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Sunset on the Columbia River

The Cable Bridge - Kennewick, Washington
This is probably the most photographed landmark in the Tri-Cities. We were down at the waterfront last night listening to a great rhythm & blues band and  watch the sun go down.

Our grandson brought his sketch pad and cell phone and spent a little time with each as we listened to the girl singer belt out some hot numbers, including some of their original work which was really good. I got up to shoot some pics and Gene visited with a guy who he claimed talked more than he did. Imagine that. I'm not talking out of turn here. My husband can conversate (I just made this word up). It's his gift.

The air was soft and warm but not overly. We were relieved when the sun starting to descend and a slight cool breeze wafted up to us from the river.  Ahhhh ... it came just before we started to sweat.

There is not much else to say about last night except that it was good to be outside after such a hot afternoon stuck in the house watching a movie called "The Next Three Days". I found out at Blockbuster that we can get free movies all day long, one at a time, until July 4th but we will just stick to one a day. It's hot enough that we need something to do while staying inside in the cool a/c.   I'll leave you with some photos I took last night. If you have free  summer concerts where you live, I hope you go. The bands need your love and it's way better than sitting in front of the television, for sure.     love, susan


People were grooving to the music. I love watching people have fun!

The Coyote Kings

This photo hardly captures how beautiful the sunset was.

Sun setting on the Columbia River

People having fun!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Just for a While

June 22, 2011 - the day after solstice. Yikes. How did it get here so fast? 

I swear my life is like hanging on to the end of a runaway train. I am truly enjoying my time off this summer, albeit I thought it would be relaxing and I'd be spending a little time in my rarely-used lounge chair outside in the sun but that hasn't been the case.  Maybe next week. That's what I keep telling myself.

I'm not complaining.  Really, I'm not!  This week, our oldest grandson is here to spend time with us.  When he was here last year, I was working so I didn't get to spend very much time with him and I was so tired from working all day that I felt like he got the leftovers of my day and I didn't have much to offer in the way of having fun. We were thrilled when we found out he wanted to come again this year. Being 13, we thought he'd be too cool to spend time with us.  He is too cool but in a "I love my grandpa" kind of way.  

Yesterday, we ran some errands and ended up at Blockbuster Video as they are running a promotion where we rented just one movie at $2.99 and from now until July 4th we get to rent one movie free every single day. Free. No strings attached. Awesome! It's supposed to hit 91 today so we'll be sitting inside late in the afternoon with our free movie.

There is a free concert over on Clover Island tonight that we might just go and listen to for awhile. Thursday there is a concert in the park near where we live and Friday is yard sale day. Our grandson loves to go to yard sales ... and so do we.

When I was his age, my sister and I spent time at grandma's house. She had a garden, a cow in the little barn, and baby kittens that were born in the hay stack. She had wild blackberries and roses that made me sneeze. Grandpa would get up at 4:00 a.m. and start the side-pork cooking in the stove and get the coffee brewing. Grandma would get up and get ready to go to work as the postmaster in the little post office in Grand Ronde. Sometimes we would walk down to see her during the day just to say hello. That little post office is still there. Nothing much has changed in Grand Ronde in all these years. I was just there recently and of all the changes in my life, I'm so glad there is just one place I can go that is exactly as I remember it. 

I need to remember that we're making memories for our grand kids. I hope our oldest grandson feels special when he comes to visit.  He is special! They are all special in their own way.

Last night, about 8 o'clock we decided to go for a walk since the sun had cooled down. We did our regular 2-mile walk and he talked to us the entire route.  I loved it. When we're with his siblings (he has a sister and brother) it seems everyone is vying for attention. I love that we can give him our undivided attention just for a while. He told us he loves to draw. When we got home, I gave him a sketch book I had bought to do my zentangles in but have only drawn one since I bought it. He'll get more use out of it than I will, undoubtedly.

Well, I'd better close this post and get some french toast going ... and get ready to make some good memories today. Hope you have a wonderful day and that someone gives you their undivided attention ... just for a while.

love, susan

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Life is a Beach

I love going to the beach. When I was a kid, we used to spend some time in the summer with our grand parents who lived 26 miles from the Oregon coast. We didn’t spend a lot of time at the coast but we usually took at least one trip there every summer and it was my favorite day of our summer vacation.
   
My mom and grandmother loved eating at a little place near Depot Bay called the Sea Hag.  Great name for a restaurant, huh? She and our mom always loved ordering crab louie. They would talk about that seafood salad for the entire year ... anticipating the next time they got to go for one. We rarely visited the beach without a stop at the Sea Hag. Those were the good old days.

These are the good new days! Besides Cape Lookout, our favorite spot is Cannon Beach. It is world famous for Haystack Rock and no matter how many times I post a photo from there, I always get wonderful comments. It is extra special now because we often are there with our grand kids when we visit. They love building a sand castle and at least one of them still enjoys being buried in sand and then having his picture taken. I’ll be sad when nobody wants to do those things any longer ... because they’re “too old for that”.

I often wonder what it would be like to live on the beach. I don’t believe I would appreciate it nearly like I do now.  And, I cannot imagine what the days and days of rain and fog would do to my mental health. I’m pretty sure I’d end up at the mental institution in Salem. Did you know there are people who actually like rain? I don’t think they are quite right in the head, but that’s just me. I need sunshine ... and a lot of it.

We visited the beach for a day on our recent trip to Portland. We watched the weather report and it was a crap shoot that paid off in big dividends when we got there. The forecast was for 59 degrees and cloudy. We got closer to 65 and awesome blue skies. This is the second trip where we got stellar weather. Those days are rare at the coast and we got one. Lucky us! The only thing that would have made the day more perfect is if my dog, Missy, had been there. She would have loved walking near the water. I felt jealous every time someone with dogs walked by. You can actually see the dogs smiling with their posture as they run up and down the coastline, sometimes darting into the tide to chase a stick or just to cool off.

While we don’t have a favorite beach restaurant, I will forever remember the carrot and garbanzo bean salad Wynter brought to share with us this time. We always pack a picnic lunch and this time we even remembered to bring a blanket. We had sandwiches, licorice, Pirate Booty, Cheetos and hand-picked strawberries from the day before. Oh, and I can’t forget to mention the fire ants on a log! That’s a celery stick with peanut butter and craisins (ants) placed accordingly on the “log”. Who needs a crab louie when you can have that?

It was a most fabulous day and I can hardly wait until we go again.  love, susan


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Two Words

My friend, Debi's dog, Tank. He's cute!
We're going on a short road trip today over to Portland so I gotta write quick and sign off for a couple of days. Perhaps I'll get time to sneak in a post or two while over on the wet side.

So today I thought I'd just post some "two words" for fun. I'll try to just type whatever pops into my head.  

Try it!  Come on! It's fun! Do it! You'll See! Let's Go!

Road trip. Rest stops. Junk food. Talk alot. Coffee cups. Blue skies. No rain. No motorcycles. High gas. Low mileage. Fun grandkids. Sliced watermelon. Dinner: lasagna. Swimming pool. Card games. Silly talk. Big hugs. See friends. Watch movies. More hugs. Laugh alot. No crying. More coffee. More hugs. Take walks. Listen intently. Talk lovingly. Eat breakfast. More hugs. Say goodbye. Road trip. More coffee. Come home.

Your turn! Come on. Try it. Just write. Don't think. Just write. It's fun. Be a. Good sport!


love, susan

Monday, June 13, 2011

Ellensburg Motorcycle Trip

Not everyone who reads my blog is on FB.  Although I posted all my motorcycle trip photos to FB yesterday, I decided to write a little about it here.  It definitely was a day to remember.

First, I thought there would be only 5 or 6 of us but it turns out there were 11 of us altogether. Eight bikes, eleven riders. Nice group!

Biker Bob got a new bike. This was the first news of the day. It's the pretty blue one shown here in front. He tells me he's had it a month.  I inform him that it's just wrong that I didn't know he got a new bike.  Normally, we are already riding together for a month by this time of year but it's been too cold for this princess to be riding. I guess I missed his maiden voyage. I forgot to ask him how many thousands of miles he has on it already. Bob is a biking fool.  I mean that in the most kind and loving way. 

The red bike belongs to people we had not met before. Super duper nice folks. I only mention the first two bikes because I love their color. It didn't matter how far down the road either of these dudes rode, I could see them.

We stopped just before Ellensburg at the Ginko Petrified Forest State Parkwhich we had not been to before. I shot this panoramic to show you what a perfectly calm, beautiful day it was. Definitely will be going back there without 9 friends itching to get back on the road. It's a place that requires some exploration, for sure.

Definitely enjoyed the company. Each of these woman would tell me if I had a booger hanging off my nose ~ they're awesome!

I'm the one with the camera hanging around my neck. I absolutely hate having my photo taken but it didn't seem quite like the place and time to argue about it so I went along with joining in for this group shot.  And, I'm glad I did. I realize I'm in the best company EVER here.

Love you sistas!


And then it was their turn. The guys were good sports!

But here is my favorite shot ....... you're gonna love this ............. 









What a bunch of characters!  

We left at 9:30 a.m. and got home about 5:00 p.m. It was quite a ride and we were exhausted when we got home.
Until the next time ... ride on!

love, susan












 

Walk It Off

I'm up early today. I set the alarm for 5:00 a.m. but I turned it off at 4:45 a.m. because I was ready to roll out of bed.  I've been really achy lately. It seems like if I keep moving, I don't ache but once I sit down or lay down to sleep, everything hurts. 

I was talking with a couple of my gal pals yesterday while we were out motorcycling. I was telling them that I am really wrestling with the changes my body is going through getting older and, well, I tried to have a little pity party but they would have none of it. I love that. Instead, they gave me a short pep talk and said, "oh, girl, this is the best time of your life! This is harvest time!"
I thought a lot about that as I was riding yesterday and I must have gone to bed thinking about it because I got up and got moving this morning. I've washed two loads of laundry, took the dog for her 2-mile walk, visited the grocery store and had my bowl of oatmeal. It's only 8:30 a.m. as I write this.
 
The truth:  I'm packing around an extra 30 lbs. of fat and it is driving me crazy. I'm pretty sure when (not if) I get this weight gone, I'm going to feel better. How could I not? Ugh.  Everything is such an effort. I can't even believe I'm posting this photo here but I put it out on FB last night as I had some great pics of my friends I wanted to share. 

I cannot hide the fact I have gained far too much weight. No freaking wonder I don't feel good.
Last week, we visited an antique store when we were in Prosser.  There was an older woman there who I think is the owner of the store. She was sitting laying in a lazy-boy recliner and it was obvious she didn't move much from that chair. I could really see myself in that position someday as the more weight I gain, the harder and harder it is to move. One just feels like a slug. I need to keep moving.
 
So, I'm not going to make any crazy promises or big plan to lose 30 lbs. in 30 days or anything like that. I know what I need to do it. I just need to do it

Thanks to my friends Jan and Dorothy for the words of encouragement.  The words mean so much to me. 

I gotta go now and cross some more things off my to-do list.  One of the things not on my to-do list is self-loathing. It's not helpful.  I need to stop doing that and get into physical action.

love, susan 

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Who Needs A Map?

"Map out your future - but do it in pencil. The road ahead is as long as you make it. Make it worth the trip." ~ Jon Bon Jovi

I woke up thinking about maps this morning. I don't know why. Just did.  And, I got to thinking that before I met Gene, I really had never given maps much of a thought. I certainly did not know how to read a map.

When you live in Alaska most of your life, there is hardly need for a map. There are very few highways in Alaska. You cannot get lost there.  Well, that may be an exaggeration, but not hardly. I hope my Alaskan friends reading this will vouch for me.

I lived in many places in Alaska and I do not recall my parents ever owning a map. When I met Gene, he came to me with stacks of maps. He wears them out from looking at them constantly. He can tell you accurately which highways and back roads he's traveled. I think his secret goal is to roll down every road he's never been on. It's a good goal. I'm with him on that. Why go down the same road when you can travel one you haven't seen? Rhetorical question.

When Gene and I first got together, we took a very long road trip across Oregon and back (not on the same road). I had a map on my lap most of that trip but I'm not sure if he knew how map-illiterate I was. Perhaps he was so in love with me he didn't notice. That's what I like to think.  But it wasn't long before I could no longer fake it. I had to admit that looking at a map was like reading Greek.  So, he showed me how to use it. I'm better than I used to be but still struggle a bit with the little numbers and exits. At least I know east from west, north from south.

I've learned that it's a lot more fun to take the smaller highways and back roads. People are usually a lot friendlier off the main grid and usually food and gas are less spendy. The other day, we made the mistake of passing up gas for $3.68 in the small town of Hood River and the next gas station was out on the highway for $3.91.  Ouch.

Today we are headed to Ellensburg, Washington on our motorcycles with some friends ... about 6 of us altogether. The leader of our pack says we're taking an old highway out of Vantage to get to Ellensburg and then we'll be returning on one of my very favorite roads, Canyon Road, which goes along the Yakima river. We'll eat lunch in Ellensburg and catch up with the happenings with our friends.  I'm not sure I'll have time to take many photos but the last time we were in Ellensburg I didn't take pics so I'm glad I may an opportunity today.
Do you like to look at maps? 

love, susan

love, susan

 

Saturday, June 11, 2011

What A Day!

We went camping. On Thursday. That's the beauty of not working this summer. We can do that. Just decide to go camping. So we did.

We loaded up the car in 2 hours after the decision and we headed to Eagle Creek fish hatchery and federal park. They have just a small number of camping sites. The park was mostly empty but once schools gets out next week, it may be hard to find a site.

We love this campground because it's small and is at the trail head of a nice hike to Punch Bowl falls. We are both a year older than the last time we hiked it and we're feeling it today. Here are a couple of photos from the hike.

Missy walks the walk! What a great hiking dog!!
A really nice hike in the rain forest
Punch Bowl Falls
Mt. Hood
Mt. Hood from a different view point.
Mt. Hood in the background.
After we got back from hiking to Punch Falls, we packed up our gear and while heading for home decided to make a detour out of Hood River over to Mt. Hood and the surrounding communities. Gene took me down a road I've never been and I enjoyed every mile of it. The weather was perfect and we enjoyed several views of Mt. Hood (pictured above) . 

White River Falls from the top view.
The best part of the day was when we arrived at White River State Park. Gene thinks he may have taken me here when we first met but I honestly don't remember. That was a long time and many road trips ago (10 years). This park is in the middle of nowhere and if you didn't know there were waterfalls, you'd miss them.   When you go to the edge of the park and see what is making the noise, it's surreal. We decided to make the trek down the trail to the bottom of the falls because the sun was shining so brightly I couldn't get a good shot at the top. Plus, we're never sure if we'll ever go this way again so we try to do what's right in front of us.  My takeaway: Do it now.

Can I just tell you what a trooper our dog, Missy, is? She's gotten so fat over the winter but it did not stop her from hiking 4 miles earlier in the day and then down and back up this steep trail. When we got to the bottom, we had to go up some  jagged, steep rocks to get to a decent photo vantage. All those agility classes came in handy as she "hupped" up onto a big rusty water pipe and walked across it like she was a champion pipe walker. She was amazing.

Lower falls.
This is the lower part of the falls. You can see the mist from the upper part of the falls. I share Gene's love of waterfalls. I'm intrigued by the power of water. These falls were actually used to create power some years ago. There is an old power house where we're standing here. I'm so glad we made the hike down to it. I felt like I was going to have a heart attack climbing back up but I took it slow and easy. If this had been my last day of living, I would have died a happy woman. 

Another photographer was setting up to take photos as the sun starting its descent for the day.  I had photo-envy.

Heading back up!
As we headed back up the long hill, at least one of us didn't know if they would live to tell the story.  But we did.  And it was good.  We laid down under a tree to cool off. While we were laying there, a red-headed woodpecker landed in the tree but he was too fast to snap his pic. But I did spot the late-afternoon moon.  What a day! It doesn't get a whole lot better.  

love, susan


Cooling off.
Afternoon moon!










Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Field Trip

Just got home from a "field trip" on the public transit out to Prosser.  Gene got a free pass when he turned 60 in December and had yet to use it, so I convinced him to take a bus ride with me out in the country just for fun.  And, it was fun!

We met a friendly, young woman on the bus who just got out of jail this morning after spending 30 days there for some very overdue fines and a warrant.  She was heading back on up to Yakima and we learned from her and the bus driver there is a free bus from Prosser to Yakima daily.  Good information to know for anyone who doesn't have wheels who might need to get to Yakima.  When we got off the bus, we walked around Prosser, had some very crappy Chinese food before we headed back to the bus station to catch our ride home.

While in Prosser, we visited the local courthouse. Gene spotted a woman sleeping at her desk. I can totally understand why. There wasn't a soul in the place. We also spotted a TV news reporter setting up her video camera outside the courthouse. She told us there was a gang task force (from Yakima) meeting happening and she would be interviewing the team when they came out.  Go task force!!

After the gang task force interview, she told us she was heading over to the local pool. I caught that interview on TV tonight. It's a really nice new pool with awesome slides, etc.

Prosser is not a big town but we like going there because the ride is really pretty between here and there. We often stop at the big rest stop in Prosser when we're motorcycling in that direction.  The town is famous for its wineries.
 
I had to shoot this photo through the bus window which was shaded but you get the idea.  This area is really beautiful.  I love the summer months when the grape vines are all green and the river winds through the towns. Right now the river is extremely high.

It was a great way to spend the day! The wind kicked up and we walked about a mile home from the bus station. Our next adventure will be to downtown Kennewick. We plan to just get on the bus and spend some time roaming around the art shops and pretending we're tourists. The great thing about riding the bus is that we get to see things out the window we normally miss when driving the car or motorcycles.  Today we saw 6 or 8 woodchucks or pickapins or ground gophers ... whatever you call them ... along a street outside of Prosser. I love spotting things I've not seen before. I should have a summer scavenger hunt list ~ wouldn't that be fun?

Hope you had a beautiful day too!

love, susan