Younger Daughter and I had a long but uneventful trip home yesterday. Wow, it's good to be home!
Before we left Portland, we made our annual excursion to the incredible Powell's Bookstore ("City of Books"). I go every year, but this was Younger Daughter's first visit. Well, first visit as a young adult rather than a young child.
On the way, we marveled anew at the massive and graceful bridges spanning the Willamette River.
As we turned onto Burnside Street, we momentarily came face to face with Portland's Chinatown. Younger Daughter snapped this shot.
She also liked this contemporary fountain in front of an office building.
Before we could get into Powell's, however, we had to park. The parking garage is crazy, with steep ramps and tight corners and itty bitty parking places and inconvenient support pillars. Better than parking on the street, however, especially with a car-full of stock and other enticements.
But Powell's is worth any parking difficulties. It's a bookstore that has to be seen to be believed.
This ediface takes up one entire city block and is four stories high. As soon as we entered the store, I pulled out a map and showed Younger Daughter how it's laid out, color-coded according to category.
Upon finding out this was Younger Daughter's first (adult) visit, the info lady cheerily gave us a couple of "I Got Lost in Powell's" stickers.
We spent a happy couple of hours and came away with seventeen books. Love that place!
But then we had to drive home. Ug. How glad I was to have Younger Daughter along for company.
We left the impressive city sights...
...and plunged into the dramatic beauty of the Columbia River Gorge.
Most of the photos were taken by Younger Daughter. Here she was trying to capture the green tint on this bywater, but unfortunately the window reflected her photographic efforts.
We stopped for gas in Hood River and were appalled at the prices.
This dramatic escarpment always impresses me.
Windmills and a bridge.
A long train of flatcars with truck bodies, way way way across the river.
We passed this gasoline tanker, but from the advertisements on the back it looked just like it was a tanker truck full of coffee. What a thought.
This isolated but massive farm (irrigated with water from the Columbia) across the river from us always amazes me by its sheer size.
We came upon a truck stating its contents were "organic," but we couldn't really determine what it was transporting. Turned out to be carrots.
These are World War II-era bunkers (?) -- hundreds of them dotting the landscape near an armory.
The bridge over the first of two loops of the Columbia we cross into Washington.
The bridge over the second loop of the Columbia that takes us into the Tri-Cities (Pasco/Kennewick/Richland) of Washington.
A decrepit old building.
The last major leg of the journey is when we turn off Hwy. 395 (phew!).
It's been a dry summer, and in many places the wheat had already been harvested.
We passed several windmills.
Lots of rolling wheat fields around here.
Farmers were also baling grass hay. See that rectangular stack? Those are thousand-pound hay bales, about 250 of them stacked up.
A basalt butte.
Wheat behind a rail fence -- classic country.
More endless Palouse vistas.
We passed this charming little rural church.
The final push before dropping into Colfax.
Are you getting bored of scenery shots?
Ah -- now this is the sign we were waiting for.
Last stop before home.
They baled the field across from us during our absence.
Now came the painful aftermath: unpacking the car. Doing mounds of laundry. Et cetera.
Ahhh! Home sweet home.