Stanyan Street

I dislike flying: the herding, the depressing bag of pretzels, and the claustrophobic cabin. It’s a perfect environment for disease transmission and my immune system can’t protect me. Yet, the opportunity to spend the holidays with our oldest son, my brother, and nieces and nephews compelled my wife and I to fly to the San … More Stanyan Street

Oakland Noir

Three of the last five years, my wife and I have Christmased in the San Francisco Bay Area. We visit our son, my brother, and a niece. Our routine is similar: movies every night and dinners at an eclectic collection of restaurants. We choose to stay in Oakland near the Bay Area Rapid Transit, or … More Oakland Noir

Family Matters …

Early in the winter, successive storms sailed into Oregon. Frigid air stalled their advance and they dropped anchor in the Columbia River Gorge. Walking became difficult. Deep powder clogged the sidewalks and pedestrians were forced to use the street. There, danger lurked as traffic packed the snow and hid slicks of ice. As with most Northwest … More Family Matters …

Picking Blueberries

  Recently, my wife and I visited a U-pick blueberry farm in the upper Hood River Valley. Our son and granddaughter joined us to help with the harvest. Upon arrival, mourning doves crooned in the surrounding forest. A smear of clouds waltzed across the summer sky. An acre of mature bushes, loaded with ripe fruit, beckoned.  … More Picking Blueberries

Silver Falls

We were late before we started. The pecking of my wife’s hiking poles on gravel tick-tocked away the time in Silver Falls State Park. We’d chosen to rent a cabin there for a mid-summer’s getaway. Our creaky bodies appreciate day hikes as opposed to backpacking, an activity for which our future is behind us. So, … More Silver Falls

Heat Wave

I ran when I was younger the county roads of Hood River. From Trout Creek Ridge to Cooper Spur and Lost Lake to Lolo Pass, I crisscrossed the valley, high on endorphins, at 140 heart beats a minute. I ran loops around the rectangular blocks of apple, pear, and cherry orchards. I noted the seasons as … More Heat Wave

Tender Mercies

In December of 2002, an uninsured driver caused an accident that left my oldest son, Noah, paralyzed. He was 22. In the immediate aftermath, our grief knew no bounds. We searched for answers. But none existed. Our resolve hardened against the injury’s tyranny. We imagined fictitious recoveries. But these were just pantomimes of wishful thinking. … More Tender Mercies

A Busy Summer

The summer has been busy with family visits to Hood River. First, my wife’s youngest sister, Linda, arrived. She and her husband have government jobs overseas. They hope to eventually retire here, close to us. Their latest posting, however, is in Pakistan and a farewell peek at our new home seemed appropriate before departing. Then, … More A Busy Summer

Schrodinger’s Cat, Pandora’s Box, and a Pet Cat (Scan)

“Our house is a very, very, very fine house. With two cats in the yard, Life used to be so hard …,” Crosby, Stills, and Nash Actually, there’s just one cat in the yard. At 16 pounds he has the heft of two, but Spanky, our tiger stripe rescue, prowls our new property alone. The … More Schrodinger’s Cat, Pandora’s Box, and a Pet Cat (Scan)