Friday, May 17, 2019

GET OUT AND WALKABOUT DAY


Today I started my in-depth exercise regimen.

As soon as my feet hit the floor this morning, around 6:55 a.m., I pulled clothes and a coat on and went for a 2-1/2 hour walkabout around the Park – it is a 1 mile walk to walk all around it … but I walked around it twice and then half way again: about a 2-1/2 mile walk.

It felt good.

I like to walk; always have.

Bob didn’t. He would walk with me and hike with me – on occasion: when we did daytrips that included walking or hiking – like occasional Flea Markets we would stumble upon on our many scenic drives because he knew I like browsing Flea Markets (him, not so much):

 
 

Bob would hike with me on our annual Mt. Rainier Box Canyon jaunts; and the sporadic local Dike hikes (more a leisurely walk than actual hiking) where we would look for turtles, throw homemade bread heels to the ducks, and delight in the baby ducks; Bob liked to feed the begging squirrels out West Side Highway at Riverside County Park in Lexington, Kelso, too – so he would walk those short trails.

And once, when we did the ‘just for the heck of it’ Mt. Rainier Wonderland Trail (a little spur off the Box Canyon Trail) while were doing our annual Mt. Rainier daytrip …

 
 

I have to brag that Bob didn’t mind hiking the mountain goat-trails during the totally awesome Mt. Baker-Leavenworth week-long-mini-vaca Bob surprised me with/whisked me off one morning as soon as I woke up - he planned the whole thing while I was sleeping, just as a love surprise for me (what a guy!):

 
 
 

And he did hike to the falls during the daytrip to Beaver Falls, in Clatskanie OR – just because we had heard about the Falls while at a Flea Market one day, and was curious. The hike was totally worth the trip!

 
 

One day we were just fooling around, taking a short scenic drive to get out of the house and ended up in Castle Rock, where we decided to do a spur-of-the-moment river hike ‘just because’ the river was there and so were we; he did it because I wanted to. But he had fun with me too, teasing me unmercifully when we came to places I refused to cross because it looked unsafe to me and I hate heights (I waded through the water rather than risk those perilous looking crossing boards): he didn’t mind crossing them though …

 
 

We also did the annual daytrip to Mist, OR, where we watched the Elk herd for a while - and was surprised to see an albino cow in the herd. Then we moseyed on to Fish Hawk Falls (which Bob would hike with me) on our way to Astoria OR, and back home over the longest bridge in North America and continue down Ocean Beach Highway through Naselle, WA, homeward bound: 

 
 
 

We planned a daytrip to Sunrise Trail in Mt. Rainier National Park because it sounded interesting, and we had never been to that particular area of Mt. Rainier before – I always wanted to go to Box Canyon, my favorite mountain get-away (the road up to the Sunrise Lodge was very narrow and scary – I screamed the whole way: poor Bob’s ears); the views, once we arrived at the top and did our hike, were awesome! We crossed a slippery patch of snow to get to the trail even though the day was very warm. Then we hiked that steep hill to the top where the snow blocked the trail - and I refused to go any further because Bob had crossed the snow and told me it was straight down; that was far enough for me. So he took the camera and took a picture of the lakes at the bottom of the drop so I could see them later on at home (have I mentioned what a great guy I was married to?) Then, he turned the camera on his chicken little and took a picture of me huffing and puffing - out of breath after than vigorous hike up into the clouds. We finished the day with a side trip to Box Canyon, where there was no sign of snow anywhere. Love my man!

 
 
 
 
 
 

I mentioned one time that I would like to see all the falls in the Oregon Gorge, so on the sly Bob planned the daytrip though the Gorge where we visited ALL the Falls in the region (Bob was a trooper that day – there were a LOT of falls) and he never complained a bit. My heart swelled with love to overflowing at every trail-head because I knew what a sacrifice it was for my loving husband to keep ‘keeping on’ (he had a leg he had broken 4 decades ago that never healed right – the surgeons did their best and they did manage to save the leg from amputation, but over time it started to bend outward and made things a little difficult for him). We started at Latourell Falls, and ended at Wahclella Falls. Bridal Veil Falls trail was full of stairs – steep stairs; what the heck Oregon? Wahclella Falls, was by far, the hardest trails to hike – they were in terrible shape, were filled with tangled tree roots people tripped over, and the loop was very long. But we enjoyed ourselves.

Bob loved waterfalls ...

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

The walks along the beachfront and through downtown to purchase yummy Elephant Ears were periodic daytrips to Seaside – we didn’t do this trip very much: only when we really talked ourselves into believing the trip was justified, did we do it. There isn’t much to see or do there, and it is a long drive:

 
 

We found a Mom and Pop Butcher Shop in Yelm a few years back while day-tripping, and saw a sign giving directions to Mowich Lake, so we googled it and planned a daytrip to Mowich Lake on the backside of Mt. Rainier via Yelm. We totally dusted out the Toyota Tundra we had at the time, but we loved the scenic views once we got there. The hiking was difficult – but Bob was game to give it a go: I was thankful we had brought our walking sticks. Mowich Lake lies 4929 feet in elevation; it is a glacial lake, and the water is clear to the bottom: so beautiful. The trails around the lake were pretty easy, though damp in many spots. The trails into the mountainside, though, were very steep, pebbled with tree roots, and extremely difficult, and we finally called it quits towards the end because it just became too hard for 2 old fat people to climb. LOL! The sides of that trail were straight down to the water - the edges of the trail were dangerously close to the edge. When we got back lakeside, we pulled up and took a break on the 2 log plank benches looking out over the lake - very scenic, very pretty, very tranquil. we were glad we went even though we were defeated by that one trail …

 
 
 
 
 

Our annual daytrip to Tipsoo Lake when access is favorable, is a short hike – a wet hike, but short; so Bob didn’t mind doing the loop with me. We have been coming here since our daughter was a little girl, so I am going to say we have been doing this annual walkabout for at least 40 years. And it became a traditional thing with our granddaughter, Alyna, when she was a little girl too. I would play a silly mimicking game of ‘Billy Goats Gruff’ with the girls, stomping across the footbridge and reciting some of the story-lines – they got a bang out of it when they were small. Unfortunately, we never got to do it with our grandson, Azariah - I would have loved to see his face when he saw those mammoth tadpoles ... but that will never happen now. When Bob & I were at Tipsoo Lake in 2016, a mature black bear did run from the lake area straight across the road inches from the front bumper of our Toyota Tundra - it looked pretty skinny and I felt sorry for it; it should have been plumper than that in August. I always loved the view from the backside of the lake hike where I could see Mt. Rainier peeking at me. The deer are so used to having humans around, they aren't even skittish if you walk close to them. We had thought to hike the trail up Naches Peak, above the lake, but that will never happen now:

 
 
 
 
 

The walkabout at Crater Lake, OR, was also a small hike – the longest part of THAT hike was getting from the parking lot to the scenic viewing spots near the Lodge …

 

The hike to Ape Cave is between short and long; it takes a bit to get there, but not overly long. But Bob knew my fascination with anything ‘Bigfoot’, so he humored me. I even watch the old black-n-white Abominable Snowman B-movies. LOL!

 

When the Monster Truck Event at the fairgrounds took place, Bob didn’t mind walking through that. And I am enough of a tom-boy, that I didn’t mind walking through the over-sized boy-toys either ;-)

 

 
 
 

Longbeach isn’t my thing – I am a mountain type of person, but Bob liked the beach – and all of his childhood and teen years were spent at Longbeach and Seaside (mostly Longbeach), so I figured if he could make sacrifices for me to spend 80% of our years hiking in the mountains, I could give him 20% of sacrificial time at the beach ;-) Bob particularly liked to hang out at Wiki Beach at Longbeach; it was a special place to him, even though it just looked like a regular stretch of beachfront to me - though I did think it was cool there was a little sea cave at the base of the cliff:

 

The last place we ever walked or hiked together was last summer, when we planned the overnight mini vaca to the Olympic Game Farm in Sequim weeks before all hell broke loose here at Heron Pointe Park; Bob ended up in ER and then in the ICU Ward where he eventually lost all ability to walk … and he never came home alive again :-(

It may seem like we did a lot of walking and hiking - and we did - BUT it happened OVER YEARS' TIME. Every thing posted in this post happened over several years' periods.

Bob walked with, and hiked with me, because that is what I liked to do and we liked to do things together … but neither walking or hiking was his thing; he would much rather do scenic drives, which was fine with me too. We did a lot of scenic drives that I found relaxing and enjoyable over our 45 years together.

But I basically like to walk and hike. And I have not been doing either since becoming a widow December 14th, 2018.

So, that is what I did this morning.

Bet you thought, reading this loooong post, that I had forgot to get to this morning's walkabout, didn't you?

I didn't forget.

I had to psych myself into doing it without him beside me and I got side-tracked down Memory Lane thinking of all the times we walked together.

This morning, while I walked and ignored the empty space to my right, I saw a couple of interesting things along the way – like this pink quartz, I spotted on my 1st round around the Park:


I have never seen anything like it before - it is really pretty and eye-catching. And it is new in this location; it wasn't there last time I walked the Park in early Spring this year.

I have a huge piece of sparkling white quartz I hauled all the way to the pickup from the bottom of the Graysriver Falls up Fossil Creek road when Bob took me there one year to show me the place his grandfather and mother used to fish all the time – and he used to go there with his dad and brother Ralph too in his youth, but I had never been there before: it is awesome! Precious, my wolf loved it too, and we let her run wild there while we enjoyed the peaceful serenity. The place feels removed from everyday life, and there is a solid wall from the floor of the gorge to the top of the gorge of solid white quartz that sparkles like a wall of glass when the sun rays hit it. It is amazing to see. I spotted a huge piece of quartz laying at the base of the wall, so I wanted it. That thing was HEAVY to pack up that steep trail back to the pickup – that was a hike – we were all huffing and puffing and gasping for breath, and our legs were getting a workout too; but I never, for a second, thought of ditching that huge chunk of quartz: LOL; and I am looking at it right now as I type ;-)

My chunk of GRAYSRIVER FALLS WHITE QUARTZ with a small piece of GRANITE from Tipsoo Lake I picked up and carried home a decade or so ago.

I saw two more ‘for sale’ signs up.

Not sure of this moving truck is moving stuff out; or in …


On my 2nd trip around the Park, I spotted this funky chair on a porch:

 I LIKE this! Speaks to my artsy nature ;-)

And on my 3rd and final lap around the park, this cool looking garden art caught my eye …


I think I covered every street in the Park on today’s walkabout ;-)

I collected the mail on the final lap and was caught off guard by the significant rate spike on my home insurance premium:

2018 FOREMOST RATE FOR HOME INSURANCE
WTH??? A 17.31 increase!

So, I immediately got on the phone to find out why. The explanation made sense, and I hung up satisfied – and a little more informed about the policy; Bob had always handled that, and I knew he was satisfied with the policy, so I never delved into it: I didn’t think, at the time, that it was necessary. But now I have to be informed – and I was/am. The woman on the other end explained everything to me in a communicable way, and made sure I fully understood at every step of the explanation: I like that. I don’t like being brushed off by someone who hates their job and doesn’t feel the need to take the time to make customers feel informed or appreciated. This woman took the time to treat me like an equal, and to make me feel like I was her #1 priority at the moment. And I am thankful because now I am no longer ignorant; and I didn’t feel slighted or talked down to at any point in the conversation.

Elohim will bless her for her kindness and thoughtfulness.

I also tried to download and connect the drivers necessary to make communication between Bob’s laptop and my HP printer happen … but that was not successfully transacted. I am really a deadhead when it comes to anything technically complicated. But I am going to keep at it until I eventually “get it”.

I HAVE to KNOW how to make this stuff I own work!

((((BOOOOOOOOOOBBBBB!)))) Can you hear me send this fervent S.O.S. heavenward?

If you can, send me a little of your brainwaves in relation to technical know-how, so I can get this techy stuff accomplished ;-)


I love you, Babe.

Always.

OX