Our Path To The River

After building our home in 1980, we had to clear out some brush and poison oak to create a path to the river.  Technically speaking, we are on one of the branches of the Rogue River.  However, this was not always the case.  A flood in the 1970s took the main river away from our property and destroyed one of Dad’s best steelhead holes, which included a whirlpool, and a small falls below it.  But we planted a few redwood trees that blended in well with the oak and ponderosa pine to form our special path.  We, and countless visitors have walked to the river, admiring the surrounding beauty as we headed for the water.  Indeed, our path to the river will always be a special place for us.sc0001a584  sc000086fdsc0000df2fsc000167bbsc0001cdf4OP 1IMG_4847IMG_4851IMG_5129sc000037c9

Inner Tubing Season Ends With A Flash And A Bang

With a flash and a bang inner tubing came to an end in Southern Oregon.  Rain and temperatures in the low 60s marked the end of a great season.  Water was lower than it has been, but it meant longer rides.  River quality has been a problem, though, especially around Upper Tou Velle Park where Little Butte Creek enters.  A stagnant swamp has formed, which probably needs to be cleaned out.  We can only hope that people take the trouble to keep the water cleaner.  It’s a bit discouraging to see brown water one side, and relatively clear blue water on the other.  However, we look forward to another wonderful season of floating the river!

Fruits Of The Garden

With the approach of autumn, the weather in Southern Oregon has cooled considerably.  Flowers that I thought were dead, have come to life with vibrant blooms.  Air quality is also a factor, since all the smoke from fires has dissipated.  I wasn’t able to landscape the front as I would have liked, but next spring I intend to plant some Carter’s blue giant delphinium next to the porch to add some color.  The following photos are some plants in full bloom. Plants 2*Plants 3Plants 4*Plants 6*Plants 7Plants 8Plants 9Plants 10Plants 1

Scenes From The North Umpqua

NU 5*NU 4The North Umpqua, which arises near Diamond Lake, is one of the most beautiful rivers in America.  Its blue-green water splashing over boulders is a must see for river enthusiasts.  An agreement was made with the Power Commission that if the extensive power plant was built there would be no further dams on the river.  That agreement, and the abundance of forestry-owned land has protected the North Umpqua from further human obstructions.  To top it off, the North Umpqua is world-renowned for its wonderful steelhead fishing.  It is not an easy river to fish, since it offers many ledge rocks that a careless angler could slip off of into turbulent water.  However, that situation deters few.  In fact, during the summer, the Steamboat area is strictly regulated by fishermen to ensure the best fishing.  Should you wish to stay the night, the Steamboat Lodge offers a sumptuous feast known as the Fisherman’s Dinner served at dusk.  From Boulder Creek Campground to Steamboat, the gradient and sharp rocks keep inner tubers and casual tahiti rafters off the river.  Famous rapids include Pinball(Class 4), which swirls around a series of boulders, and Boulder Hole(Class 3), a long rapid that ends in an abrupt drop around a corner.  The river flows through magnificent forest and is highlighted by awe-inspiring spires and rock formations.  The photos  include:   Approaching Boulder Hole, The last drop of Boulder Hole, Happy Rock, Rapid below Headknocker’s 3 .  If you get the chance, do visit!NU 1   NU 3

Beauty Of The Salad Is Breathtaking: The Best Of Gloria Russakov, Part 2.

Gloria Russakov worked with a staff from Oregon Magazine to evaluate a slough of restaurants in Oregon.  Her reviews are both personal and humorous. She describes herself as “the short woman in the big glasses” and always paid for her meals.  She warns people to be careful when eating at Samovar Bakery-Restaurant Lunch in Beaverton:  Nothing upsets the staff more than to see the Amerikanskis(Amerikantsy) blatantly waste food.  Even reassuring them that you like your lunch, but that some 5’2″ females are susceptible to weight gain even on Perrier, will not assuage their anger.  Leavings trigger grimaces, shrugged shoulders, mumbles of “terrible” in two languages, and a posse which runs after you with the unfinished apple strudel you were trying to escape.  However, Gloria can become quite poetic when she encounters a creative dish:  “Beauty of the salad is breathtaking.  Chunks of cucumber, zucchini, green pepper, celery, iceberg lettuce and tomato all tossed with an oil-based sweet and sour dressing accented with onion, all bordered with tall cabbage leaves.  Flowers from The Country Inn garden are arranged among the layers of leaves.”  Such is the description of a salad from The Country Inn in Eugene.  Compare this with the salad at The Keeping Room in Cannon Beach:  “Salad is one of those combinations no one(wisely) bothered inventing before.  Pieces of cantaloupe are combined with pieces of cucumber, then dressed with a semi-sweet, watery white dressing.  All are deposited on a lettuce leaf to catch the run-off.”  Her description of their cheesecake is positively lethal:  While it(ginger cheesecake) inspired one California tourist to write in for the recipe, it inspired another to grab her coffee cup, gulp fast and rush down the block to cleanse her palate with nibbles from the leaves of nasturtiums planted in front of the White Bird Gallery.  Nasturtium leaves are visually appealing, impeccably fresh and mercifully unsauced.”

Some Alice Collectibles

Ever since I was a child, I was fascinated by Alice in Wonderland.  After reading it several times, I purchased a 16 album, which was popular at that time.  In fact, record players used to include 16 as a possible speed.  If you didn’t own such a record player, you could buy an adapter, which would cut the 33 1/3 speed in half and also provide a soft space for you to put your 16 on.  Talking Books or Audio Books were produced by the Audio Book Company in St. Joseph, Michigan.  Their popularity spread and many stores carried them.  The idea was to select movie personalities or famous readers such as Marvin Miller to read complete works of literature.  Movie actors had read parts of literary classics on 78 albums in the 1940s with varying degrees of success, but the Audio Book Company wanted complete versions if feasible.  Alice in Wonderland was a Talking Book, which featured the multi-voiced talent, Marvin Miller, who did all the voices except Alice, which was done by Jane Webb.  I remember listening to it many times and following the Alice text as I listened.  In time, I collected different editions of Alice, including foreign editions and I picked up plates, figurines, cups, recordings.  I told my friends about my interest in Alice and they responded by bringing back some splendid items for my collection.  Here are a few items from my Alice collection.  I plan to do separate posts on illustrators of Alice and her changing identity, because Alice in Wonderland is much more than a children’s book; it is an intimate look at a child’s psyche and the twisted adult figures that are reflections of that mind.

The Alice nesting doll

The Alice nesting doll

A Walrus and the Carpenter mug

A Walrus and the Carpenter mug

A Mad Hatter and the Dormouse mug

A Mad Hatter and the Dormouse mug

A White Rabbit cup
A White Rabbit cup

Alice and friends behind glass
Alice and friends behind glass

Alice and the Caterpillar plate

Alice and the Caterpillar plate

The Trial plate

The Trial plate

Bambi Linn as Alice in Eva Le Gallienne's production of Alice in Wonderland on 6 78s.

Bambi Linn as Alice in Eva Le Gallienne’s production of Alice in Wonderland on 6 78s.

Ginger Rogers in Alice in Wonderland on 3 78s.
Ginger Rogers in Alice in Wonderland on 3 78s.

Jane Asher as Alice

Jane Asher as Alice

Walt Disney's Alice in Wonderland

Walt Disney’s Alice in Wonderland

David Del Tredici's Final Alice with Barbara Hendricks

David Del Tredici’s Final Alice with Barbara Hendricks

David Del Tredici's In Memory of a Summer Day

David Del Tredici’s In Memory of a Summer Day