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Wednesday, July 30, 2008

9.2 Miles

So yesterday after my early morning neck adjustment, I stopped at Tressa's and had a cup of Chia tea and a wonderful blackberry/cream cheese scone. Then I hit the trail at McCormick Park for a short walk...

Instead, I wound up walking all the way to Carnation on the Snoqualmie Valley Trail. I didn't plan to go that far. But I did have a water bottle and a protein bar, so when I got to the highway where I generally turn around...I just kept walking. Sorta reminded me of Forset Gump when he ran across the USA. Every time I decided to turn back, I'd see something interesting ahead and I just kept going...

So, how long did it take me to walk 9.2 miles? 3 1/2 hours.

How many cool animal sightings did I have? Zero...unless you count the undetermined small rodent that crossed my path.

How many cool birds did I see? Let's least 5 varieties of duck, Canada geese, Great Blue Heron, 2 hawks (one I heard, and just barely saw as it flew behind me - the other was beautiful. I wish my hawk ID was good. It was large, dark, and as it lifted off the ground, I noticed the really beautiful rusty reddish brown leggings.) There were lots of smaller birds of course, most of which I noticed then passed by without stopping to appreciate.

Reptiles? Oh yeah! I heard one big Bullfrog, and saw 11 Garter snakes...Eleven!

How many times did I think I heard a bear? Just one, but it gave me a scare. I hadn't planned to hike so far...I was one knew where I was, or when I was supposed to be back...Not very good hiker behavior. I had my cell phone, but could not tell exactly where I was at any given time...I did take note of the few signs I saw along the way. "I'm south of the Oxbow Farm sign", I could tell far would not be more than a guess.

How long did I sit at the bus stop in Carnation before I caught one headed to Duvall?
About 3 1/2 hours...I could have gotten home nearly as fast if I'd walked back. Next time I'll ride to Carnation and hike back. Preferably with friends.

Funniest sight along the way? Where the trail crosses Highway 203 - the major north-south route in the area. There's a BIG yellow sign that cautions hikers to "LOOK BEFORE CROSSING"

Was it fun? You bet!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

4 Days Off!

I've had 4 days off! In a was wonderful to sleep late, take long walks - and naps. I ate lots of ice cream (Breyer's peach and mint chocolate chip), had some quality time with the cat, went to the library, and stopped in the local quilt shop to talk about the "get to know us" evening they offer each month.

I kept my twice-weekly appointments with my Chiropractor. Dr. Metcalf keeps me in shape to do the walking. I've hardly taken any over-the-counter pain meds since I started seeing him in February. The shoulder pain I've had for years responds well to regular adjustments. My first experience with Chiropractors back in Missouri brought relief to the old neck injury, but I'd put off finding someone here until I'd irritated my neck again. After an early morning adustment, I walked down to McCormick Park.

If the stupid swallows had cooperated, I'd have some cool pics to show you...what I got were pics of sand, and grass, and gravel. Those little birds fly FAST!

All in all, it was a great vacation - and I have the whole week of July 28th-Aug 1 off, too!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008


I didn't realize it had been so long since I'd checked in...It's been a pretty strange time for me.

I realized a couple of weeks ago that my friend Van had a birthday on July 3rd. Then I remembered that he'd taken his life last fall. That got me thinking about two other good friends that I've lost in the past couple of years.

Sid was a great guy - one of the first to let me know that it was cool to be a girl who wanted to hunt and shoot. He was a Missouri Highway Patrolman for 30 years, and that was after he'd survived Vietnam. Just after he became our Sheriff, he suffered a heartattack, and spent the final year of his life waitning for a transplant. He died of a massive infection just before he was suposed to come home. Van was a mutal friend. This happened a few months before I found Wilderness Awareness School and came west.

Steve was another guy I worked with for a long time. He helped me bury two old dogs, and gave me a Leatherman tool as a going away present. Van was the one who called to tell me that Steve had died. He had a really warped sense of humor, and liked John Wayne movies.

I miss all three of them. They were all suportive of my outdoor pursuits, even when I beat them at skeet or got a bigger turkey. They were like my brothers, and I miss them.

My Favorite Fiction Authors and Books

  • Suzanne Arruda- the Jade del Cameron mysteries: "The Mark of the Lion" "Stalking Ivory", "The Serpent's Daughter", "The Leopard's Prey" and "The Golden Cheetah"
  • Ken Goddard - "Balefire" and others
  • Stephen White - the Dr. Alan Gregory books are all great. "Kill Me" is my favorite.
  • Harlan Coben - anything he writes is great
  • Elizabeth Peters - Amelia Peabody mysteries

My Favorite Nonfiction Authors and Books

  • "Coyote's Guide to Connecting With Nature" by Jon Young, Ellen Haas and Evan McGown- 2nd edition coming soon!
  • Gavin De Becker - "The Gift of Fear"
  • "Deep Survival" by Laurence Gonzales- the best survival book I've ever read! Not a how-to, its more of a who does,and why.
  • Candice Millard - "The River of Doubt -Theodore Roosevelt's Darkest Journey"
  • Anything that starts with "Peterson's Field Guide To..."
  • Tom Brown, Jr. - "The Tracker" and others
  • Mark Elbroch - "Mammal Tracks and Sign" and "Animal Skulls"