I spent the last weekend doing a lot of driving..nearly drove through the whole state of Oregon. The impetus for this journey was two fold. My dear friend Shannon was getting married and I had a cousin from Ireland who contacted me on Facebook whom I had never met and who now lived in Oregon so i decided to kill two birds with one rented car and a couple of tanks of gas. The heavily Celtic themed-dance and music orientated wedding at the town hall in Portland was lovely with perfect weather, beautiful singing and a lovely harpist, bride was glowing and the groom was positively content...no embarrassing speeches, just loving homages to the happy couple's love, really refreshing! I then spent the night in Portland at the now empty bride and groom's home and got up to a gorgeous sunrise to start my journey East to Haines. I decided to really take my time and stopped to see and enjoy Multnomah Falls (pictured above) and Horsetail Falls, the Louis and Clark trail and anything else I could gawk at. I truly enjoyed the slow reflective pace and no traffic, Yay! The skies were ever changing form brilliant blue to a moody gray which made me yearn for fireplaces and books and cups of tea...I think the trip was well worth the effort on many levels because spending time with yourself and nature is always a good way to pass the time.
I arrived in Haines an hour before I had agreed to arrive so I hung out at the only place in town open on a Sunday (and also pretty much the only place in town, period), The Steak House. I had an ice tea served by a beautiful young lady in a cowboy outfit and looked around and wondered who was going to eat the salad bar, soup bar and giant pile of corn bread since the place was empty save me. I made my way slowly to my cousins home and stopped to photograph the watering system (photo above) I thought they were beautiful against the yellow straw and blue sky. Clodagh, my cousin from Kilkenny, Ireland and her husband, Chris, were gracious and interesting. Chris showed me his collection of photos from his actress Aunt who starred in Laurel and Hardy films and the Our Gang show. His great grandfather had one of the most extensive collections of Native American artifacts in the world and what he did not donate to the Smithsonian, Chris had...he also collects Civil War swords and daggers so I was a proverbial pig in poop the whole time I wandered around the house gazing upon his collections. They are both avid readers as well so I may as well have moved in! All in all it was a fantastic weekend and I am happy that I ventured out of my normal sphere to satisfy a soupcon of wanderlust! We Americans tend to forget what beauty is right in our backyard and I intend to right that wrong over the next few years..I'm even thinking of talking David into renting an Air Stream for some long weekend journeys! "On the road again..." ! :)