Current Location: Rocky Point, Oregon with blue bird skies and 41 Degrees F at 10AM
It has been an interesting year for me. A time of decisions, transitions, changes, and progress. When my birthday rolls around, I like to take a few moments to re-evaluate. Turning 70 is a milestone, one that seemed an anti-climax after thinking I was “almost” 70 for so long that when it happened, it didn’t seem all that different.
I had a great birthday, made more so my social media, Facebook of all things. I love getting birthday cards, but the plethora of greetings that come my way from all over the country and even far parts of the world really add a celebratory air to the day, even one spent doing errands. Of course, the errands in town were topped by a celebratory cocktail at the luxe Basin Martini Bar right in Klamath Falls, and tasty tapas for supper. Lots of cards, fabulous presents, phone calls, a wonderful day. Lucky me.
More is on the agenda in the coming two weeks, but that story will come later. For now, my big job is to try to track what has happened and where we have been during the last few weeks since I last had time to write. Thank goodness for calendars and photos, or I wouldn’t have a clue where to start.
After our visit with Judy early in August, we spent much of the month working in earnest at the apartments and in Grants Pass. It seemed as though every day we were driving one place or the other with tight schedules, deadlines, meeting contractors and realtors.
The realtor part was a bit tiresome, because in spite of the fact that I sold my house on Painter in 11 days, the closing hasn’t been so timely. Once again we were delayed by the big California lender, with more requests showing up even after I had signed my part of the closing. After the last snafu, where we all decided to start over with a new lender and a closing date in December, some details shifted, and once again closing is imminent. We will see.
The rest of the projects were incredibly successful. The apartment painting project is at last completed, and looks great. Did the final walk around this week with our contractor, who does great work if always a bit behind schedule. The flooring project was completed through Home Depot, a process that entailed repeated trips to the store in town, myriad phone calls between shippers, installers, coordinator, schedulers and such. What a process! Still, the contractor also did a great job and we love the results.
The Grants Pass cottage was also part of our projects. With the high heat and low water well numbers, we make it a point to return at least every week or ten days to spend 2 or 3 nights there. My biggest job is moving the single water hose, attempting to keep the few plants alive and healthy. The grass is doing fine with the daily watering at 2GPM that I have set up on a timer.
Exciting forthcoming project for the cottage is the installation of a new water holding cistern, scheduled in mid October. Once that is completed, we will be able to set up timers and sprinklers for more areas on the property without worrying about running the well dry. Grants Pass water is notorious for salts and iron, but we won’t bother setting up filtration systems until we have a new house to protect once we move there for good.
In the mean time, Mo is working on all sorts of projects, including clearing out the main part of the old building she plans to use as a workshop. She tore out the old windows to make more storage space, re-worked and removed a bunch of old cabinets to build a workbench, and managed to install a nice window air conditioner that Melody gave to us when she moved out of the Painter Street house. Yay!
On an earlier visit we cleared out all the old stacked carpets in the mud room, cleaned up and painted it, and Mo fashioned new frames for the door and window from some old wood she had on hand. Looks great. Every project we do at the cottage must be tested against our willingness to see it come crashing down when it is time to raze the cottage and build the new house.
I haven’t quilted a thing. The sewing machine managed to come out for a few days while I worked on my first quilted clothing project, a jacket I plan to use for traveling. It was so much fun, but oh my, don’t let anyone look at it too closely. So many mistakes, and I learned so very much about what NOT to do when making a quilted jacket. Photos of this little project will probably show up in the next posts which will be sometime after early October.
MoHo traveling has been on hold as well, with our last trip to Waldo Lake the last time we tucked away in our cozy rolling home. Both of us are getting serious hitch-itch, day dreaming about the time when we will get that baby rolling again for something longer than the trip back and forth to Grants Pass now and then.
With all the work we were doing, Mo and I still managed some fun times during August. Melody and her clan, along with the new guy in her life came out for a great family day/BBQ with us and we laughed ourselves silly playing Bocci ball on the very sloping lawn. Mo and I took a break to chase down the SuperMoon rising over the boat launch in Rocky Point, a quiet and lovely moment in the midst of all the busy days.
I spent a lot of time walking Mattie, who seems to think that our long walks are the perfect time to find the biggest thing possible to carry home. She carried this bone for more than 3 miles, and it was worth it, because I think two weeks later there are still remnants of it lying around the house.
Daughter Melody is one of the lead stars in the play Chicago, put on by our Klamath Falls Linkville Theater. I have tickets for the closing show in October, but decided that I had to see it before then, so I’ll be in the audience tonight, in the front row. I have heard my daughter sing “All That Jazz” for years, but never starring as Velma on the stage. I am thrilled!
As the month of September continued, however, all work stopped. For some reason, all our friends who had promised visits seemed to converge at once on Rocky Point in the first week of September. We knew Phil and Joanne were coming, and I had scheduled Jeanne’s visit for months. But suddenly Jimmy and Nickie were heading our way and I was not about to miss time with them. To add to the fun, an old friend from my working days in the 80’s in Idaho retired, and called to say she would like to stop in and say Hi. I hadn’t seen Marti in 40 years maybe? so of course I wasn’t going to say no.
Scheduling all worked out perfectly, in the long run, with one set of folks replaced by another set within hours, and sometimes overlapping.
First to join us were Phil and Joanne from Eugene. Our history goes way way back, to 1977, with some gaps in between, but you know how that can be with old friends. They came down on Labor Day weekend, and settled into the cabin before we had a make it yourself lunch of vegetarian wraps and fruit.
Our destination that first afternoon was a six mile round trip hike on the southeast side of Fourmile Lake, just west of Rocky Point near the Cascade crest and into the Sky Lakes Wilderness. We had a wonderful time on a lovely hike that meandered around Fourmile Lake with views of Mt McLoughlin, and a final destination of Badger Lake.
We earned our supper, and enjoyed the planked salmon, zuchinni rice ( a new recipe I love with shredded uncooked zukes added to hot rice, corn, black beans, and peppers), cole slaw from an ancient recipe Joanne remembers from the 80s, and my favorite dessert to make, a French Apple Gallette.
The next day was supposed to be hot, so we planned to get out on the water early. Phillip is a great cook, and I remember the days when we shared working weeks at the Forest Service work center and Phil would make huge breakfasts, eating three times what I ate and staying skinny forever. He is still pretty darn slim, but maybe the marathons have something to do with it.
I made the potatoes but Phil scrambled the eggs with leftover salmon, cilantro and who knows what else. They were so good and I don’t even like eggs.
We were treated to lots of pelicans and smooth silky water and Joanne, unused to all that shoulder work, did just fine. As often happens when we introduce folks to paddling, by the time we were done they were asking about kayaks. Of course, Joanne is hoping for a tandem kayak so she can ride in the back and Phil won’t know when she isn’t paddling.
Melody and Robert drove out from Klamath Falls just in time to see Phil and Joanne and take a little paddle of their own on the bay. Joanne and Melody figured out that they hadn’t seen each other since Melody was just 16!
That evening we decided to try out the Harriman Resort for dinner. The resort is still trying to get it’s sea legs and still doesn’t have a liquor license. Instead we shared a great bottle of wine before we left, and trundled down the few hundred yards to the restaurant.
It was an interesting experience. The restaurant is beautiful, and we all ordered halibut, which was quite tasty. However, Phil and Joanne are fish only people and the garlic mashed potatoes came smothered in a rich, dark beef gravy!! Now what chef puts beef gravy on a fish plate! The waitress was quick and accommodating and the offending gravy was gone when the fresh plates were quickly replaced.
We rounded out the evening with our favorite Racehorse dominoes before everyone crashed happy, tired and satiated from too much food and laughter.
I think I’ll continue the rest of the story in the next blog since this just keeps on going and I want to share all the photos.
Next: Jeanne arrives from Vermont and Nickie and Jimmy arrive from points north