Saturday, November 22, 2008


High time. Face time. Quality time. Real time. Taking time. Making time. Wasting time. A million years caught in a fossilized amber instant. A moment reflected over a lifetime. Time for clouds and shooting stars. Time to listen and to hear. All the bells and chimes celebrating time.

Thursday, November 20, 2008


After ten or twelve rentals, we just had our first renting guests who didn't "get it". Actually, these were guests of our renters and not the renters themselves. The couple who rented from us totally loved Grape Hill. From what I understand, these other people never got off their Blackberries long enough to look up and take a deep breath. That brings me to Thanksgiving. Despite all the negative news in the economy and the stress out there that can easily be found, there is so much more joy and beauty that comes knocking at the door just waiting to be let inside. I ate the best pomegranate of my whole life just the other night. Wow! Looking forward tonight to making an appetizer of whipped eggs scrambled with chevre and topped with a filet of sole poached in white wine. Doesn't that sound good! Don't know about you, but I find the smell of Starbucks beats the heck out of the flavor of their coffees. Maybe I'll just sit in one of their deep chairs, read the paper, and take in the aroma. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. It is going to be especially great this year with my dad healthy again and the whole extended family making the trip from back East and LA and Seattle to share time together. Sue loves cooking for everyone and we all get to be loud and festive without religious focus or presents. Not even Hallmark has horned in on Turkey Day. Only one question...why is it always the Detroit Lions playing football on TV?

Friday, November 14, 2008

Peacocks and other secrets-

Drive yourself around back country roads and you, too, may stumble upon dozens (hundreds?) of peacocks happily pecking their way around Walla Walla. What a funny trip I have just had, an amble of obscurities. Tried and liked The Green Lantern, currently my Best Tavern of Walla Walla. Turns out that Jody and his pals have gone for it and opened Walla Walla Brewers. Had their Walla Walla IPA and really liked that very much indeed. Cannot wait to try more. This one is very alive in the mouth, super fresh, with a powerful hoppy back. Between that and a Rogue "Double Dead Man", the beer scene was superb.
Played quite a bit of Texas Hold 'Em at The Blue, had a ball and let my game go to hell just for the fun of it, calling on hands where I left my brain at the door time and many bluffs that I couldn't stop laughing at myself. Twice came over the top with $16 bets and won them both with absolutely nothing. Got burned on legitimate hands just as often. Had queens under five different times and lost 4 of the 5.
My new mantra is "Don't trust the ladies". Sorry Sue, spouses excepted.
The weather was warm and dry, very pleasant, for all but one of the days. It was in the 60s on two nights, nowhere near winter yet.
I will be trying to get over in three weeks to install the three new windows going into the living room and the upstairs bedroom. Come Spring, I'll be getting in the new outside features...cannot wait!
I've been invited to play poker in a home game on Tuesday nights and to shoot skeet at the gun club on Thursday nights. Don't know that I'll be going to either, but being asked is great. I was just talking about how my mom and dad have bridge as the central piece in their amazing, vibrant social scene. DO I love any game enough to play every week, much less four or five times each week?
There is a roving gourmet club that I'll find more out about, and I'm trying to find out whether I can use the YMCA occasionally...would love to get in some work outs in WW.
The one disappointment on this stay was truly bad food. Wretched! Grabbed meals rather than going to good places. The finale was a bowl of clam chowder at Shari's in Union chunky glue that was. I hope they checked the serve-by date before they opened that two-gallon can of chowder.
The birds were just wonderful, even better than usual! In an earlier blog entry I had wondered about whether November might be the one month where Walla Walla had little to offer. Wrong. The peaceful scene in town was lovely all by itself, low-crowds and nice weather.
Take some meandering roads and look for peacocks.

Saturday, November 8, 2008


Adding more windows this coming week and adding plantings for the first time other than the vines. The electrical transformer will go away behind a low hedge...not sorry to see it going. Also thinking to plant yuccas just outside the front door to create a nice spot for the chaise lounges and shelter the parking areas off from the house. How many years will it take to grow two trees big enough to handle a hammock with me on it?

Two new windows will go onto the south wall of the sitting room, looking out to Dry Creek. We have determined for now not to move ahead on the next phase of the building, so we are moving forward adding additional views both downstairs and upstairs.

Come Spring, I will add the outside shower. Cannot wait to be showering outside while looking out to the distances. Give me a teepee with a view over a dark palace any day!

Jerusalem artichokes are native, too. I wish that I had help with this many dirt clods to remove is a tough call.
The plantings are challenging...walking the fine line between enhancement and distraction. Wanting so much to keep the pure flavors of fresh food raw from the garden! It is just way too easy to lose the magic behind too much makeup.