Beau at the park with a moss-ladened bole.

Hello, dear readers!

It snowed here this morning, in our neck of the woods. We walked Beau anyway. His sniffing proclivities made it colder, but Beau must do what Beau does. This climate forces us to “just get use to it” and that’s okay. Joy is discovering that we won’t melt if it rains and won’t freeze if it snows. We will, however, slip and slide and fall down if an ice storm intrudes. These are all key learnings. Buying the right clothes has helped. Most of our clothes are from Costco. They sell all manner of flannel, raincoats, gloves, some hats…thank you, Costco. LLBean now provides us with flannel-lined pants, Vermont Country Store provides us with sleep shirts for the Rayman. Small clothes investments writ large, I say.

Speaking of the Rayman, he is good following his new digital appliance that was inserted into his chest muscle. He can’t lift more than 10 pounds, he can’t drive yet, he is forced to rest and because of all that, getting his procedure done in the middle of winter proved to be fortuitous. Can’t play golf so we are now filling our time charting our future.

As many of you know, we have a 2-story skinny house that is absent a garage. This means we park on the street. Rayman looked out the front window this morning and marveled that he could see both cars; meaning, most of the time one car can’t been seen because it is parked down the street. The reason he was looking is because he wanted to adorn our Honda with our new Oregon license plate. It is very good looking and we are getting closer and closer to becoming full fledged citizens of this wild and pretty world. 

This is is the from of our house. The Japanese maple has very pretty branches in the winter.



Our other car still has a CA license plate because we CANNOT find the title. It is in a box somewhere in the POD that has not yet been delivered. The reason it has not yet been delivered is because we DO NOT HAVE A GARAGE. Which is a great segue into a story or two.


I requested an easy to remember plate. We got what they had. 206 Penguin, perhaps.

While driving around with a realtor looking at property WITH A GARAGE, our realtor said,” Well, no one in PDX parks their car in a garage. Most cars are either parked in their driveways or on the street.” And that is true. However, we need a garage right now so we can eliminate the POD. The kids have a 3-car garage in Vancouver, WA so one POD was emptied into the third stall of their garage. And we are now in the process of having them bring boxes over so we can figure out what we need to get rid of or put away somewhere. Once we complete that task, we will have the other POD delivered to their garage and continue the process. What a chore. 

And about the realtor. We have decided the new plan for our life is to move into independent living in a senior living confab. Here is their website.  https://www.willametteview.org/  And guess what? We must downsize from 1700 square feet to less than a thousand. And we won’t have a GARAGE. Ain’t life great. And to think we all brought this upon ourselves!  Whoooo.


Here is the good news. We won’t be having a GARAGE sale. And I’m not going to list things for sale and deal with all that. If the kids don’t want it, it gets donated. End of story. Really, I don’t mind giving to organizations that help people. I have received help my whole life and I just look at it as paying it forward. It is a win-win.

Funny how life is. We work and work and work to buy things. Consumerism really isn’t our friend in the final analysis. Not that I haven’t figured this out a long time ago. It is just slapping us upside the head now as we pare down so the kids won’t need to do much when we exit, stage left. When we move in, we will also be buying peace of mind. We will not end up by ourselves. Heck, this place even has an indoor pool that I won’t have to drive to in the freezing rain.

Yesterday, I drove to the community indoor pool to do aqua aerobics. I have driven there for years. Yet, I got lost. Our street was closed for a repair, the workers building the four-plex next door had all the parking spaces. It was raining, and here I was in a bathing suit, a heavy kaftan, a turtleneck top, Uggs on the my feet wading and waddling forward to the car with CA plates. And I got lost. Not for long, just long enough to get me thinking affectionately about indoor pools that can be accessed without going outside. 

PDX has us watching Northern Exposure. Rayman and I had never seen the show, so we are finding it hilarious for it’s lack of “me too” sensitivities and racial slurs. No, that is not funny except that it is in a perverse sort of way. Thank goodness we have evolved. We on the left are kinder than that. I can remember during that time when I had a male peer ask me to go get him some coffee. My reply was, “F**k you.” Those were the days. And please don’t judge me. These guys was horrid people that did everything they could do to sabotage me at work. Just saying.

The sun was out yesterday for a bit and we drove into PDX downtown to return something to Pottery Barn, the store of muted colors. In an effort to re-do our bedroom here in preparation for our new digs someday, I BOUGHT a quilt on-line that was a bust. Anyway, on the way back to the northeast part of the city to go to Costco (see a trend?) to re-fuel with help from a gas attendant (even though Oregon did away with mandatory gas station attendants, Costco has retained 9 pumps for attendants and non-attended pumps as well), we followed the Columbia River at water’s edge to return to our humble abode. What a grand river nature has provided. I love that drive. It lifts the spirit. While parts of this world crash and burn because of climate change, the river flows on providing a habitat for the salmon, the sturgeon. And get this…we saw a Bald Eagle on the wing near the river. So cool.

It is starting to snow again, and as I look past the window to our fence, I see a squirrel running up the tree bole, so brave he or she is gathering food on this cold afternoon. 

Book Update:  my PhD editor tells me he is a day or two away from sending me my new and improved book. Before I hired him, I had no idea he was moving from San Diego to Eureka this past month. I’ve been waiting for oh, so long. This is good news. It guarantees more work on my part but I’m anxiously awaiting the new and improved draft. I’m atwitter.  

I’m done here. More to come.

P.s. check out the re-do of Shogun. We are enjoying it. Oh, and if you haven’t watched it, Northern Exposure. It is silly. And it was filmed in WA not far from here!

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