Some of Our Favorite Trails are Roads.

Horseshoe Lake

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Heeding Haiku With Chèvrefeuille, September 7th, 2016. Simplicity.

Yuck

 

flee into the woods

path blocked by spider’s web –

ooh yuck run away

 

 

 

view original prompt here

 

 

 

Heeding Haiku With Chèvrefeuille, August 24th, 2016.

Nebula

 

young nebula glows

all births come after midnight –

Earth spins silently

 

 

view original prompt here

 

 

 

Mt. Rainier

Late Summer at Paradise – Mt. Rainier’s south slopes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

535 Extracted Words – The Tease – August 2016

August 2016

I write flash fiction, non-fiction, essays and novels. This month’s Tease is from a novel in progress.

With a look of disgust and a belly of the same, he turned and walked away. Before he knew it, he was on the road east, jogging as much as walking out of town. A dump truck whipped by, its tailing vortex tugged him dangerously close to the pavement. A BMW cruised past, honking twice. He came to a bridge rising over the boulders and mud of the reservoir’s main inlet. Hard to believe this mosquito-laced trickle would evolve into the torrent that notoriously crushed bone and spirit on its way to the ocean. As he dropped off the other side, he noticed a couple using the brace of the bridge as a shelter. Their clothes were oversized and stained, but they smiled so he nodded back.

He felt lost, so very lost. Aside from the many honks he had garnished from passing traffic, he might as well have been invisible. Unseen, lost and stumbling.

A county patrol car passed him. He watched as it pulled into the gated entrance to a forest service road, then spun its tires backing up into its own dust to block his path. He was keenly familiar with the abrupt halt of local law enforcement vehicles. It conjured feelings of being busted smoking in high school, that frozen moment of fearful excitement, deciding whether or not to run. (Is this really happening?) Next came the realization that it was happening, usually followed by his ejection from the latest village he had terrorized. But he was already leaving, as far as this cop knew. As far as he knew, as well.

“What’s your name, sir?” the officer asked after stepping out onto the shoulder in front of him.

He had never been rousted by a woman cop before. A bad morning was getting even worse.

“Bart.”

“I recognize most of the locals, especially the young, good-looking ones. But not you.”

He was surprised to see a grin on her face as she looked him up and down. She seemed friendly, for a cop, and self-assured. The confidence to patrol alone, in these hills, spoke volumes. He assumed she could handle herself, and him, for that matter.

“You here for the Turtle, Bart?” she asked, pulling her hair behind one ear.

“I was. Turned out to be a bad idea.”

“Why’s that. Don’t recall any 415’s last night.”

“415’s?”

“Disturbances … fights.” She looked at him closer, her large eyes almost comforting him with her gaze. “What you running from then? Is it a girl? Somebody break your heart?”

“No, nothing like that. Just kind of wondering what I’m doing here.”

“Hah,” she let out a laugh, revealing dimples with her wide grin. “You and every other a-hole coming up from Ashland or Portland or wherever you’re from. No offense.” She looked him over again. “You know, there’s not much up this road except locals and wildfires. Some survivalist nut jobs, too. Walking through the hills in your Dalai Lama outfit might not be the best idea. Got some ID on you, lost Bart?”

He slipped a weathered hand into his pocket and then, with a sinking feeling, realized he had nothing with him. Not his ID, his money. Nothing.

 

 

Whales

Well, kind of …

Blanco, Eight Ball and other assorted Gray whales from the Central Oregon Coast.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Perseids Gave Their All

The annual August meteor shower provided quite a show. And it’s not too late to join the fun.

Every August, in the wee early hours of the twelfth morning, the Perseid meteor shower delights. We went out last night around 2am, when the Earth was turning directly into the trail of comet exhaust that creates the shower.

The moon was a non-factor, setting before 1am. The weather was clear and with only two fires in the region, smoke was minimal.

The following was our list of essential meteor gazing gear:

Lawn chairs.

Blankets.

Pillows.

Munchies.

Ipod.

Our final count was 72 per hour.

Although the shower peaked last night, it continues on tonight. This year’s ideal conditions mean that a second evening of viewing is worthwhile, even if the rate drops off.

Note: Meteor showers are often referred to with an hourly rate. This gives the false impression that there is a steady pace to the streaking stars. But, in reality, they come in bunches, with lulls between which can be disheartening. Give yourself enough time to see the best the show has to offer.