Sunday, April 29, 2012

The Road Less Traveled to Bickleton (263 Miles R/T)

(This photo was taken last fall)
The trip to Bickleton, WA was interesting today. We rode down a road we've not been before only to discover the pavement ended onto gravel. We had to turn around and backtrack, which only took us 24 miles out of our way. The new road provided gorgeous views and it also showed me how gracious the peeps we ride with really are. For a moment, I was in great fear that I would run short on gas because my bike has a smaller tank than everyone else. They assured me they would not leave me behind if I ran out.

We finally ended up at the Bluebird Inn for lunch about 2:30'ish. I found out there was a couple riding with us that came along on our ride because they thought we were the Harley Owners Group (HOG) they were supposed to meet at the same place we met. The HOG had been there but they left before we did. They didn't know they were with the wrong group until we stopped to take a break. It was great because they were a really nice couple and they were acquainted with one of the guys in our group. The more the merrier.

Here's what I learned today:
  • If your group leaves you behind, just ride with somebody else. Hopefully, it will be a nice group like us!
  • Go down roads you've never been down before. So what if you have to turn around? The view is always different coming and going.
  • Trust your peeps when they say they'll cover you. I only worried for a moment about running out of gas. 
  • When the guy in front of you extends his leg out from either side of his bike, he's pointing at something that's on the road he wants you to avoid. Today there was a lot of roadkill. Gross.
I hope you got out for a Sunday drive today!  love, susan

Saturday, April 28, 2012

On BFF's (Best Friends Forever)

My best friend's daughter!
My best friend in high school died from breast cancer about 10 years ago. Gene and I were on vacation when I received the call. The news really took the wind out of my sails for awhile. How could someone so beautiful from the inside-out be gone at such a young age? I sat for a long time, watching hummingbirds sipping from a feeder and trying to make sense of it. I had to finally stop thinking about it because it was crazy-making. There are some questions I just do not know the answer to.  I have to be okay with that.

Fast forward to yesterday. I had lunch with my BFF's daughter, Amber! She drove over from Yakima and we met up with the Red Cross to donate blood and afterwards visited over lunch. I was a little teary eyed when I first set eyes on her. She has her mother's smile, her dad's eyes and she is as sweet as her Grandma Betty. I gave her some old photos I had been saving for her and she gave me a little ceramic teddy bear figurine from her mom's collection.  

I was feeling guilty yesterday because I had posted on FB  something about meeting with my BFF's daughter. I'd rather suffer a bad toothache than hurt anyone's feelings. So, if you are my old high school friend and you are reading this blog post and/or you saw my FB post, you, (YES, YOU!!) were my best friend, too!  Here's the thing.  I have many best friends. As a matter of fact, if you're my friend, you are my best friend. While I ran hard with Amber's mom in high school and we knew each other so well, we each had other friends and I know she loved her other friends as much I loved mine. 

Amber, if you're reading this, I want you to know that having lunch with you and seeing your mom in your smile was a real gift for me. I hope we can do it again when you're in town. 

love, susan   

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Love It

I'm up late this morning so I'm going to use a prompt from Mama's Losin It. A nice website for those looking for ideas when you run out of your own.  Imagine that!  Once a week, I receive an email with 5 ideas.  Love that!

Today, I chose an easy one:

What do you love most about your job?

 I love so many things about my current job I will list them! They are not in any particular order.

Fridays off, every day is casual day, great people, productive work, potlucks once a month, "team" mentality, safety is number one priority, start work at 6:30a.m., 30 minute lunch, fun events, educational staff and safety meetings, top-notch communication. I have yet to find anything I don't like about this company.

What's not to love about that?  How about you?  Got a job you love? Retired?  What do you love about how you spend your day? Tell me!

love, susan 

Monday, April 23, 2012

Three Hundred Ten Miles

Nice ride yesterday. I forgot my camera so I had to snag this photo of Roslyn, WA from the web. We had never been here before and neither had some of our biker friends. 

Roslyn is the location where they filmed "Northern Exposure". It's a sweet little town where you have to ride through trees to arrive. Although I couldn't see his face, I know Gene was smiling. He loves trees and on a hot sunny day like yesterday, those shady trees were a biker's friend. I downed a couple of glasses of water when we sat down for lunch. It would prove to be prudent as the temps rose to 83 degrees by the time we headed home. 

I was telling a friend yesterday that I've come a long way in motorcycling. When we arrived here almost 4 years ago, the longest ride I had been on was 100 miles round trip. If we ride anything short of 200, it feels like a short one. 

There are many places that remain to be seen. I wonder where we will go next?

love, susan

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Lil P

I do love summer. 

It has arrived.

Nobody loves summer more than I do except maybe our new roommate, Phylisha, fondly known as Lil P. 

Lil P is my cousin who moved here to the Tri-Cities about 3 weeks ago. She just graduated from dental assistant school and is looking for work.  She was born and raised in an itsy bitsy one-horse town in Oregon, where is rains a lot. I can tell she is much like me in that if either of us never sees another cloud the rest of our lives, it would suit us just fine.

Welcome to the high desert, Lil P! I hope the sun shines every day from now until October!


Friday, April 20, 2012

There's Something About Mary

“Did you ever notice that the first piece of luggage on the carousel never belongs to anyone?” ~ Erma Bombeck ~ (may she rest in peace) 

I love classic Erma Bombeck. I miss her humor. One of my young co-workers has never heard of her. You say, "what??" 

Yes. I'm the older generation now. I can hardly believe it. I could give you a long list of things my younger friends have never heard of ... except I can't remember what they are.

So, I thought about Erma Bombeck all day long yesterday. That's how I roll. I'm one of those people who gets an idea or a song in their head and it gets stuck on repeat. The good thing is that most of those ideas are anchored with other experiences and I enjoy the memories that come with them. I simply cannot think of Erma Bombeck without thinking of a very good friend I used to work with named Mary.

Mary has a wicked sense of humor and she taught me to see the funny things in life.  For instance, one day out of the blue she said, "have you ever noticed they put instructions on the bottom of candles? Like some dummies need instructions to light a candle?" Well, you gotta know I drove right home that night and looked at the bottom of a candle. You'll do it too ... trust me. After spending a couple of years working in close proximity to Mary, I have never been the same. She really brought out my dark humor and she is one of the rare people I've met who I can share it with.  Funny how people can influence your life that way. 

I thought of Mary when I shot this photo last year in some little podunk town in Utah or Nevada, could have even been Arizona.  "Swallows Drugs" ~ a pharmacy.

I miss you Mary but I want you to know I'm still laughing and I think of you way more often than I tell you about. 

love, susan

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Between the Toaster and the Cookbook

I share cubicle space next to a young woman who works full-time, has 5 beautiful children and goes to school. As you can imagine, she has to have good time management skills.

I enjoy hearing the short conversations she has with her husband and kids in the morning and after school. It isn't that I'm eavesdropping ... we work in a fishbowl and I can hear people in all the cubes. 

The other day she was explaining to her husband that she had promised one of their younger daughters a reward for getting a perfect score on her spelling test. She told him there was a little bag of chocolate between the toaster and the cookbook and it just struck me funny.

I love that a woman with so many things on her plate knows exactly there the important things are kept.

love, susan

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Oregon Beaches

Oregon Beach

 This photo was taken on a perfect day. Aren't all days at the beach perfect?

love, susan


Friday, April 13, 2012

Friday the 13th

I went til about noon today before my cousin told me she thinks Friday the 13th is a lucky day.

I tend to agree with her logic. 

We had just pulled out of a parking lot of a dentist office where she dropped off an application for a job. In the last two weeks, she has hand-delivered her resume to at least 35 dentist offices.

And then her phone rang.

It was a dentist who lives less than 2 miles from our house. He wants her to come for an interview on Monday. If he hires her, he will undoubtedly be the luckiest dentist on earth. She is a real joy and we are lucky to have her with us as she transitions into a new life away from where she was born and raised.

And the luck doesn't end there. We are headed to a company luau and dance tonight. 

Lucky Friday the 13th. I hope it was for you, too!

love, susan


Thursday, April 12, 2012

In Like a Lion, Out Like a Lion

(Portland Zoo)
"The sun was warm but the wind was chill.
You know how it is with an April day.
When the sun is out and the wind is still,
You're one month on in the middle of May.
But if you so much as dare to speak,
a cloud come over the sunlit arch,
And wind comes off a frozen peak,
And you're two months back in the middle of March."
-  Robert Frost, Two Tramps in Mud Time, 1926  

Forecast is for thunderstorms today. I'm wondering what we've done to tick off Mother Nature?


You Made My Day, Dude!

A couple weeks ago while I was driving back to Portland after spending the night on the Oregon coast, we came up on some road construction ...