The French Laundry…NOT

I’m missing my writing so I’m writing to satisfy myself.  It’s not that I have a lot to say.  Just saying.

The great northwest continues it’s rush to break all heat records, I’m pretty sure.  Oh, I know.  We said we didn’t want to suffer through a foggy summer.  By that I think we meant, let’s mosey north where it is a bit warmer and a lot sunnier.  Not, let’s mosey north and roast our assess off.  That was not part of the thinking of either the Rayman, me or Beau (whom I speak for).  But, alas, here we are and what are we doing here?

The other morning the Rayman woke me up because he wanted to strip the sheets off the bed because he wanted to wash them.  I’m blessed.  However, I was asleep.  And he reminded me of my grandmother who used to wake me up every Saturday morning.  She declared Saturday to be laundry day.  But her laundry day was much different for her.  She did not own a washing machine.  Actually, we don’t have a washing machine in TDH, but everywhere we stay has washing machines and dryers for a price.  And the price swings are radical.  $1.00 to $2.00 a load for washing.  And .75 cents to $1.50 for dryers.

But I digress.

My grandmother would load the dirty clothes into the car and my grandfather or mother or, later, I would drive her down to Mr. Alexander’s.  He owned a laundromat on Pine St. in Paso.  It was a big high ceilinged place filled with Maytag wringer washer machines.  There were a few cement “canals” that ran through the building that were used for dumping the dirty water from the machines and the tubs.  She would have the washer filled and a big wash tub (like the kind we put in garages) filled with rinse water.  And after the clothes got churned up real good, the process of wringing and rinsing commenced.  And I was forced to participate.  OMG.  It was hot (read no air conditioning) and humid (read from all the hot water steaming) in the summer.  Winter was much kinder on the washer women of Paso.  It took hours.  And then we would gather up the clothes, pack them into wicker baskets and return home to hang them out on the clothes line in back that had not a bit of shade.   It was hard on me…I cannot even imagine how hard it was for my grandmother.  She was a tough ole bird…and her name was Birdie!!  And the kicker is, she did this until I graduated from high school in 1963.  She didn’t need to make it so hard on herself.  The neighbors had a washer and dryer in their HOUSE.  Not grandma.  In reality, it probably felt like luxury to go to Mr. Alexander’s laundromat.  We have to remember that when my grandmother married, my grandfather took her out to “the ranch” where she had a wood stove and an outhouse.  How did she do the laundry then?  Probably by hand.  There was no running water in a stream with rocks that she could beat the clothes with (dangling participle).   She had to prime the pump.  Laundry was much harder.

But I digress.

Well, so, Rayman didn’t have to do the laundry that way.  Except that on this trip we have used a clothes rack for drying things.  It takes about 20 minutes in this heat.  And hangers for shirts/blouses that, if hung, dry equally as fast and with few wrinkles.     Still, what woman wouldn’t want the problem that I have?  A husband or significant other that is willing to do laundry without asking.  I am counting my blessings.

When the Rayman returned from the “laundry room”, he opened the door to the next door neighbor’s RV.  Espying the man on the couch, he said, “Oh, I am so sorry.”  The man on the coach retorted, “Wrong coach.”  Luckily he did not have a gun at his side for he might have “stood his ground”.  “An innocent mistake takes life of local man” would be the headline in The Tribune.  We were lucky we weren’t in Floridah.   

So.  Where was I?

The other day we went to a play in Ashland called “The Great Society” and it was a play about LBJ.  At intermission, Rayman walked into the ladies restroom.  When he scurried out, he was red as a beet.  These type of incidents are new to his repertoire.  And twice in one week.  Should I be worried?  I wonder.  Should he be worried?  Most definitely.

This just in.  I beat Rayman at golf the other day.  Gross.  To be fair, it was a par 58 course and most of my yardages were 100 yards to 140 yards with an occasional 250 thrown in for good measure.  It was the most fun I have ever had playing golf because the course was a full 18 holes that only took 2 1/2 hours to play and I had 11 pars.  I have never had 11 pars anywhere, anytime.  My thinking leads me to the conclusion that golf courses of the future should be like this one.  Short and sweet with ample trouble that punishes an errant shot but rewards a person for accuracy and good putting.  And it didn’t take all day.  Really, people.  Pros can have the long courses.  For just plain old fun, shorter is better.

Today we took a ride to see the sights nearby.  We visited a fishery, the headwaters of a river, and a high hill.  Here are some pictures.


Beau regarding the trout


The Metolius River


La Familia y rio Metolius


La femme et Bend, OR et montagne Sisters.


A fisherperson’s dream. Trout at the fishery.

So…our new friends, the Chambers, whom live in Redmond just north of Bend, invited to dinner last evening.  And they watched Beau for us when we played golf.  These guys are great.  We met them in Graeagle/Plumas Pines.  So glad we did.  He barbecued beef blade cut ribs.  OMG.  They were so flavorful.  And she made a zucchini baked affair and scalloped potatoes.  Yummy.  When discussing food we ventured onto Mexican food and they told us about a place in Redmond where, when you order guacamole, the waiter makes it at your table.  Sort of like they used to do in fine restaurants for Caesar salad.  Well.  One the lead to the next…and now we plan to go with them to Diego’s tomorrow night.  Brice reports that they don’t do regular Mexican food.  Perfect.  Since I tried beef cheek tacos the other night at La Tapatia (see previous blog), I am hoping for tongue this outing.  Or goat.  I’m ready to broaden my horizons in the eating department.  Ole.

And here’s the latest epiphany.  Rayman loves this life of RVing.  He is more relaxed than I have ever seen him.  Perhaps it is because we don’t watch TV.  And we visit places that we would not visit if we were staying in a motel.  And there is a lot less work than at home.  Just saying.  This whole thing is a revelation.  Now we both understand the lure of the RV phenom.  We are surprised and delighted.  And we’ll see you in September!!



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