Country Living Series

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Hello from Portland

I am writing this from the home of my dear friends Wendy and Tim, in the middle of the great city of Portland.

But boy it wasn't easy getting here. Not because the drive was difficult or anything, but because we spent so much time and effort getting ready for this event.

About two hundred pieces, organized according to style.

Poor Lydia knew something was up. She hates it when any one of us leaves.

I hit the road about 5 am this morning, even before the sun rose.

Highlights from the trip. Pretty farm scenes, photos taken by literally holding up the camera and hoping for the best. (I didn't post the numerous ones that didn't turn out.)

A massive stack of hay, already baled and tarped.

The Palouse is very green and verdant this time of year.

There are signs several miles in advance, warning about the steep grade descending into the Washington town of Colfax.

Broad vistas of wheat, ready to harvest.

Coming into Colfax.

See? Ten percent grade.

Colfax is a very nice old-fashioned farming town.

Beyond Colfax, things got much drier.

It's amazing what lucky shots you can capture by holding up the camera and snapping randomly. This was a flock of Canada geese flying by.

The land got flatter and flatter.

Soon sagebrush started getting interspersed with the wheat.

I liked the windmill, but the color adjustment on the camera made the wheat look almost fluorescent.

Harvesting wheat.

Finally connecting with Hwy 395 south.

Crossing the mighty Columbia River once...

...and crossing it twice (it loops around) before dumping me into Oregon.

Finally, after many hours, hanging a right toward Portland. In a mere few hours...

Along the windy Columbia River Gorge, lots of giant windmills dot the landscape.

For the rest of the trip, I followed the Columbia River. It's impossible to underestimate just how huge this river is.

It always amazes me how such a huge river runs through such a dry land.

Mt. Hood, looming in the distance.

Things gradually became more verdant as I approached Portland.

Magnificent Multnomah Falls, taken in passing.

Ah, back in the city, with city traffic.

That's all the photos I took today. I spent the afternoon setting up the booth, catching up with my friends Wendy and Tim, and having dinner with an old and dear friend from college, Bruce, and his wife Linda. All in all a tiring but very satisfying day. And I'm glad to be here safe and sound.


  1. The picture of the windmill and florescent wheat is a great shot!

  2. Thank you Patrice for the lovely photos and commentary. It was good to see the diversity in geography from where you live to where you drove. It is surely helping us to decide more definitely the area we are hoping to relocate to. Hope you have a wonderful time in Portland.

  3. Patrice,

    I love the beautiful countryside pictures posted. Colfax is a goregous town, a neat little place to possibly live.
    While out in Oregon, will you by chance be meeting up with Enola Gay?
    The tankards look so amazing, I can only imagine all the work you and your family put into making them. I pray you have a large amount of people turn out at the convention,specifically your booth :-). I'm looking forward to getting with you in the the several weeks to possibly purchase a few for Christmas gifts.

  4. I've been cross country a few times --- it always strikes me how state boundaries seem to follow topography. Every time I cross a state line, the topography changes dramatically. Not instantly, but dramatically.

    It appears to be so in your pictures, also. I can't think but that has something to do with where state boundaries are located.

    I enjoyed your pictures today a great deal! I can imagine the Columbia River in all its magnificence. Do well in Portland!

    Just Me

  5. gorgeous photos...we live in such a beautiful country!

  6. Columbia looks way nicer than any thing here in the midwest. The Ohio and the Mississippi are big but nowhere near as pretty

  7. I say it every time you post your pics of this journey...that is my favorite drive ever. I have traveled from PDX to Walla Walla probably nearing 100x in my 31 years and I love it in every season and every weather. The Columbia Gorge has got to be one of the most beautiful places on earth. The Palouse aren't far behind either. Enjoy your stay in my hometown. I'm an hour south of you as we speak, but I'm very very pregnant and wont be venturing up to visit you. Besides, I might get some terrible side-eye considering the type of event it is. :) Hope your sales are high. The weather is on your side!

  8. Thanks for the pictures Hope you have a great time and make it back safely.

  9. It is nice to see your photos and read of how beautiful the Columbia River Gorge is. I grew up there and still live nearby. Sometimes when you get too much of the view it is easy to forget how wonderful it really is. I enjoy the photos and stories of your life on a daily basis....I hope you enjoy visiting my part of the country as much as I enjoy hearing about yours.

  10. I hope you sell all the mugs except a few to send to those of us who entered the Safecastle contest on your blog. :)

  11. Amazing to me to be able to see that far off into the distance-it's flat! The roads here a serpentine,and if you get a half mile straight stretch, it's odd. I hope you sell your mugs off quick, and have time to get out and enjoy things.