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Archive for the ‘politics’ Category

Saturday, 22 April 2017

The weather did not look good for our planned political activity.

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out the window: wind and rain

Such a day would have been just perfect to read this book that just came from the library:

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Nevertheless, we persisted in our plan to go to Astoria.  Maybe the weather would be better there, as sometimes happens across the river.

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crossing the 4.2 mile long Astoria Megler Bridge

The weather was not better.

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as we drove by to find a parking place

For two hours, about thirty people braved pouring rain and 30+ mph wind gusts to join in the nationwide March for Science.  Our version was a rally, not a march.  This intersection is one of high visibility where every vehicle going east through Astoria drives by.

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We parked and joined the others.

I’m pleased to tell you that during the entire two hours, even when the group dwindled toward the end, our ears were filled with a cacophony of vehicles’ horns tooting in approval, and we got many waves and upturned thumbs.  I saw only one negative face, followed by two bumper stickers: One read “Trump Pence” and the other read “[something something something] GUNS.”

my photos:

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I am slow with puns and just realized…There is no PLANet B.

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My sign held up well, covered with clear adhesive shelf paper and edged with packing tape.

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Some walked down to a traffic island down the block.  There, they were visible to traffic coming east and turning toward Commercial, and also to traffic heading west on Marine Drive.  I decided to join them, partly because I wanted a better look at the garden.

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a well kept garden

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My sign is a large one and the wind was strong on the traffic island.  I decided to rejoin the others over by the post office.

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That was the moment when my saturated camera said it had had quite enough of the storm.

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I hope it revives!

I turned to my iPhone for a few more photos and then decided that it, too, was getting much too wet.

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Here are four photos taken by another attendee (I do not know who):

Someone got much better photos of my sign than I managed to get:

 

Photos by Carol Newman: 



Allan’s photos:
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1:01 PM we were done!

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And then the rain stopped!

PS. Here is an earth day oriented gofundme to save a local woods. https://www.gofundme.com/help-save-a-forest

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Friday, 14 April 2017

I woke early to sunshine and a sense of urgency about picking flowers and going to work, then heard pounding rain and rested awhile longer.  At the usual time, I got up and then went out to gather a bouquet.

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Skooter on the front steps (Allan’s photo)

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Skooter helping

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I did not pick from here…

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and I did not pick from here…

I picked a few narcissi from the outer beds and then went for a big batch of yellow and red tulips that were in a rather hidden spot…

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I wouldn’t miss these so much!

Another pouring rain drove me to take shelter in the greenhouse.  I did nothing productive like tidying up, just stared at the weather in disgruntlement.

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rainy greenhouse view

I thought that I had better take both my raincoats to work in case intermittent soaking rains happened all day long.

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Frosty and Calvin as the sun emerges again

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a very special gold leafed Eryngium (Allan’s photo)

At the Ilwaco post office:

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I love the white tiny cupped narcissus, and lots of lily foliage

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I planted this little white star and now I did not know what it is.  Looked it up: Ipheion or Triteleia uniflorum.

We delivered our flowers to the Chautaqua Lodge meeting room in north Long Beach, feeling a bit guilty that the setting up of all the chairs had been too early in the morning for us night owls.  Below is artist Michele with the cut-out of our congresswoman, Republican Jaime Herrera Beutler, who had been invited to tonight’s town hall but had instead decided to do a telephone town hall the night before (during which, I heard later, she only took ten questions from constituents).

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Jaime will be at our town hall one way or another.

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our bouquet for the town hall….our only contribution to making it all happen.

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Long Beach

We settled in to the beach approach weeding.  As soon as rain began, I realized I had completely forgotten my rain coats!  I took shelter in the van for a bit.  Fortunately, the rain stopped.  A strong and cold and miserable wind intermittently annoyed me.

Because of puddles next to two of the 13 beach approach sections, we are weeding all out of order, depriving me of the pleasure of seeing the end of the garden get closer bit by bit each day.  The project is all cattywampus this year.

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looking west

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looking east; we started on a sort of middle section today

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Allan used the pick to remove as many roses as possible from right on the edges.

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It is always cheering to get to pet a dog.

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progress

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one section done

 

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another angle of admiration

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We skipped this section; the hardest of all because of rushes interspersed with everything.  We need to start it fresh some day instead of when we are tired.

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Allan has to detour around puddles to dump the wheelbarrow.

We can dump weeds in the tall grass but the rugosa rose roots go to the city dump.

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yellow hoop petticoat narcissi replanted  by the long grass (Allan’s photo)

There is always an interesting assortment of people and dogs walking by (all Allan’s photos):

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This woman was looking for places to put out some painted rocks.

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this beauty

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and this one all studded with tiny shells

The purpose of these artistic rocks by her and her daughter is a simple one: to bring people joy.

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our second target of the day

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mostly done

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section two, after

We did not quite finish the second section; instead, we jumped ahead to the end cap by the arch.  I felt the roses there needed to be cut down for the sake of good traffic sightlines.

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end cape, before

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and after: the sign asks people to not pick the flowers because they are for everyone to enjoy.

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Some had dug two plants out of the planter right by the do not pick sign.

I had planned to work till six and then go straight to the town hall.  I simply could not go on so we quit work at about five.

Town Hall

We were so pleased and relieved that an impressive number of local folks came to hear the nine speakers (none of whom was named Jaime Beutler).

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I borrowed this photo from Joe Chasse.

The first speaker was on video: Brian Baird, who after his retirement was replaced by Jaime.  Blake spoke of how during his years in office he held over 350 town halls to communicate with and listen to his constituents.  He said, “In order to represent your constituents, you have to listen to them.” Rep Jaime Beutler is known for very few in person town halls.

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We also heard from local Rep. Brian Blake, from the mayor of Long Beach, from the county sheriff, from a county commissioner, from a concerned citizen, from the chairman of the local Chinook tribe, from a long time school board member, and from David McDevitt, who is running against Jaime in 2017.  As the concerned citizen who gave a rousing speech said about Jaime, “If you don’t want to listen to us, we’ll find someone who will.”  (Sorry, I have forgotten the citizen’s name; she was speaking on behalf of local business luminary Karyn Zigler who had been unable to attend.)

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Rep Blake, Mayor Phillips, Sheriff Johnson, County Commissioner Wolfe

 

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I think Mr McD also looks like a good candidate to play Doctor Who!

At the end of the evening, Allan and I were asked to take Jaime home because no one else had room for her in their vehicles.

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We have an idea for some shopping that she might like to do tomorrow.

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Sunday, 12 March 2017

Because we had a political meeting in Naselle this afternoon, we had decided to leave home in time to drive half an hour further and visit a museum in Skamokawa.

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driving along the Columbia River

I was not best pleased that it was a beautiful day and would have been excellent for weeding the boatyard garden.

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two wrecks?

Here is what the white remnant of a boat looked like in 1995, in the same little bay:

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For some reason, it had been deemed unsalvageable.

As we drove along, I pondered the fact that the many conifers along our roads are why our landscapes look more somber than the airier ones that Mr Tootlepedal photographs in Scotland.

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scenery heavy with evergreens

We arrived at our destination in Skamokawa: Redmen Hall, which I had read was hosting an exhibit about tugboats and steamers on the Columbia.

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The view from the parking lot

A back door offered easy access without all those stairs…and a disheartening sign.

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NOOOOOOOO

Across the highway, below, is a general store and café where we have stopped before.  I thought that, because of Skamokawa being such a small town, I might luck into a museum docent there.

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looking down on the grocery store and post office

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Redmen Hall from below

In a room right on the river, behind the store, an antiques sale was on for the day.

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antiques in a light filled room

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I used to have an apple like this till my good friend Sophie (a dog) broke it…for which she was forgiven.

I found two things to buy.  One is a present so I cannot show it!

And sure enough, when I mentioned having driven from Ilwaco to find the museum was closed, I learned that one of the docents was ill, and another one offered to open it for us.

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behind the store/café

Off the deck by the store, a boater was buzzing around.  I am sure Allan wished he was out boating, too.

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Allan’s photo

We followed the docent back up to Redmen Hall.  The hall was once a school house.  Amazingly, it used be down where the highway is.  When the road was put through, the building got moved up the hill with “steam donkeys” (not really donkeys!).

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The old school house remembered.

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Allan went straight up to the bell tower. (I did not.)

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Step on a pedal to open the shutters for the view.

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The views from the bell tower.

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river town from high above (and a boat ramp)

On the second floor, well designed historical panels go all around the walls of a big open room.

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What Skamokawa means

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interpretive panels

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the kind docent who let us in.  The way the panels are put together reminds me of my grandma’s scrapbooks.

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when the road went through

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a dance where “ladies may walk on their partners feet, and no questions will be asked”.

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another strong woman

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river pictures (Allan’s photo)

A glass case held birds provided by the Audubon Society…

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an erstwhile Mr Grumpy had fine plumage.

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the view

We dropped a contribution into the money jar and also spent a pretty penny in the well -stocked gift shop, including two books (quiet, because one is a present), a documentary called Work is Our Joy (about gillnetting), and some notecards.  If we’d had time, we could have watched Work is Our Joy right in the museum.  I will enjoy it from my comfy chair at home.  I already identify with the title.

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One of three nooks of books.

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Well represented: the books of Grays River author Robert Pyle

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Musician Doug is the spouse of our friend Beth; they live nearby but we had had no time to look them up.

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river town art

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most of our purchases

The hall is open Thursdays through Sundays from noon to four.  We recommend a visit.

We had a little over half an hour to to get back to our Indivisible meeting in Naselle.  I could not resist a side trip to the historic 1905 Grays River covered bridge.

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on the way

Tying in with our visit to Redmen Hall: author Robert Michael Pyle lives in a house with a view of the covered bridge.  I thought it would be kind of nosy to add a photo of his house, so here is the bridge.

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under the bridge (Allan’s photo)

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The river running fast and high.  (Allan’s photo)

In particularly stormy times, the river has flooded the valley.

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Allan’s photo

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Allan’s photo

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Here we go.

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the other end

Before we turned around, I had to get a closer look at two trees beside  the parking area.

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going in for a closer look

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moss and licorice fern

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Allan’s photo

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Allan’s photo

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assorted critters

Ooops.  I suddenly realized time had slipped by and we would be 25 minutes late to the meeting at Hunters Inn, Naselle.  I told myself that it was ok; we have been to almost every liberal political meeting available since November so we could be late to just one.

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part of the gathering

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postcards laid out on three booths

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One member brought this.

We discussed, shared ideas, and laid some plans for future events.

On the way home, Allan and I detoured to look at a garden we had admired when attending last month’s meeting.

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The garden in question is next door to Naselle Timberland Library. (Allan’s photo)

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lots of narcissi about to bloom (Allan’s photo)

Next door: a large garden which I intend to look at every time we have a Naselle meeting.

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Allan’s photo

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Allan’s photo

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pieris and the church next door

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Right across the street sits another charming house.

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I wonder if there will be sweet peas on that fence in summer. Or that could be a dog path!

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wrap around porch

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a tree with personality

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Allan’s photo

As we got close to home, I looked at the weather forecast and must admit I did begin to fret about losing what might be the only nice gardening day this week.  Remembering that we now have light till after 7 PM (yay for daylight saving time!), I resolved to get two hours work done in my own garden.

While clipping some Joe Pye weed, I gave an experimental dig at a large fuchsia.

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one of two many fuchsia magellanica

To my surprise, it shifted, so Allan helped me pull it out.

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after…Ok, he pulled, I watched and encouraged.

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project: clean up middle bed, before…

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and after

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Woe!! One of two matched asophedels has disappeared from the right hand pot.

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I will snag this asphodel from a different pot.

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Frosty

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bogsy wood swale

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Oh for more time in the garden; so much to do.

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Skooter obsessing about the frogs.

The unfortunate forecast:

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Resolved: no more daytime meetings on nice days till we have spring clean up done!

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Saturday, 11 March 2017

I can tell you the library joke now, shared by Maggie Stuckey at her talk two days ago.  I found a version online:

A chicken walks into the library. It goes up to the circulation desk and says: “book, bok, bok, boook”. The librarian hands the chicken a book. The chicken tucks it under her wing and runs out. A while later, the chicken runs back in, throws the first book into the return bin and goes back to the librarian saying: “book, bok, bok, bok, boook”. Again the librarian hands over a book, and the chicken runs out. The librarian shakes her head. Within a few minutes, the chicken is back, returns the book and starts all over again: “boook, book, bok bok boook”. The librarian gives her yet a third book, but this time as the chicken is running out the door, the librarian follows. The chicken runs down the street, through the park and down to the riverbank. There, sitting on a lily pad is a big, green frog. The chicken holds up the book and shows it to the frog, saying: “Book, bok, bok, boook”. The frog blinks, and croaks: “read-it, read-it, read-it”.

Bad weather made me happy today because we had an afternoon meeting: an ACLU training session focused on supporting undocumented immigrants.

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The Long Beach welcome sign today

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both sides

On the way, we ran a couple of errands in Long Beach.  I was started to see that the planter just north of Dennis Company has been completely browsed by deer.

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The planter looked raggedy.

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every tulip nipped by deer

I am beginning to wonder if any place in Long Beach is safe for tulips.  I just hope they don’t take a liking to the tulips in the welcome sign garden.

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container outside the Adrift meeting room (Allan’s photo)

People Power ACLU meeting

Today’s ACLU  meeting was one of 2000 simultaneous watching parties across the country, with 200,000 people signed up to attend a broadcast of the actual live meeting in Florida.  We had 22 in attendance, one all the way from Westport.  We all appreciate Adrift Hotel providing the meeting room for free.

Since the election, membership in the ACLU has swelled from 400,000 to 1.2 million members (including me).

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sign in and cookies

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Resistance Training on the big screen

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discussion time afterward (A few folks had departed.)

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It saddened me to hear, again, that there have been immigration raids on at least five local families, with fathers taken away.  These are men who are known to be hardworking good folk, certainly not the stereotypical “criminal”. It is difficult and can take years to become documented, especially for folks from Mexico and Central America; it is not a matter of laziness or wanting to be “illegal”. (By the way, it is considered much kinder to refer to someone as “undocumented” rather than “illegal”.)  Many folks in the room had grandparents who were immigrants, in one case, by illegally stowing away on a ship.  Mine on my mother’s side were immigrants (and invaders)…of the Mayflower type.
If you would like to watch the presentation that we saw today, it is said to soon be available for viewing right here.

“Even when we lose we must not despair, for there is dignity in entering this battle”, said ACLU executive director Anthony Romero.

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“As DT is going about his amendments of hate, we need to live our love”, said Faiz Shakir, ACLU political director.

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Allan’s photo

We heard three other speakers as well, Louise Melling (deputy legal director), Andre Segura (an ACLU attorney), and Padma Lakshmi, a star of Top Chef,whose mother was an immigrant and who said “I want my daughter to live in a country of compassion, not fear.”

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I fell in love with audience member Daisy. (Allan’s photo)

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so soft

This is all going to lead to a whole ‘nother set of meetings, all with a productive and well informed agenda.

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the beachy view from our meeting room

at home

By the time we got home, we had an hour and a half of daylight and a cessation of rain and wind.  Some front garden clean up was suddenly possible.

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before

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Skooter inspects, 20 minutes later.

That was a favourite sit spot for Skooter.  He may have liked it better before.

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before

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after, much weeding still to do. I look forward to it.

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hellebore

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Clematis ‘Freckles’ has been blooming on west garage wall all winter.

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narcissi

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Skooter’s way in (where a bottom piece is missing)

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front path looking east

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hellebores

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the floppiest hellebore

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double white hellebore

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“black” hellebore…with mulch of last autumn’s apples

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Pieris finally sizing up and blooming (left)

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Iris histroides ‘Frank Elder’

Because it was at the same time as the ACLU training, we missed today’s postcard party.  Here are a couple of photos (by Michele) of the latest efforts.  You can stop reading now if you don’t like the postcard efforts, because they comprise the end of today’s post:

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ingredients

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Bannon is the most terrifying of all…

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Dang! I wish I’d been there.

Tomorrow (Sunday): an Indivisible meeting which we are planning to combine with a brief and, we hope, photogenic side trip to Skamokawa.

 

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Saturday, 4 March 2017

In the early afternoon, we crossed the Astoria Megler Bridge and joined a roomful of like minded folk for an Indivisible North Coast Oregon meeting.

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a darling small house by where we parked (Allan’s photo).  A sunny garden in front would have no privacy, though.


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Allan’s photo, on the way

Astoria was parked up because of a winter brewery festival. We walked two blocks in the rain, passing one of my favourite little gardens on the way to the Fort George Brewery meeting room.

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Allan’s photo

This ornately fenced garden is built by piling soil (now mulched with washed dairy manure) on top of pavement.

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Allan’s photo


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Allan’s photo: tulip foliage, and pigeon pecking in the manure

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a goodly crowd


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Allan’s photo


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Allan’s photo


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a neat driftwood thing

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Some thoughts from the meeting:

Indivisible is opposed to the ABC of authoritarianism, bigotry, corruption.

A speaker advised that we send postcards to politicians…”even a picture postcard works because I think they stand out,” she said.  This made me smile because of our recent art postcard parties.

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an example from one of our postcard parties

A woman from Germany spoke, saying “who would have thought a little painter from Austria could have killed millions” and she asked, “How could my people not see this coming, how could they look away?”  She said “My life is a series of attempts to make up for the crimes of my ancestors”.  When she goes to a protest, her thought when seeing a photographer is: Is he from the newspaper or from Homeland Security?  She believes she sees the early signs of fascism.  Right here is her recommended reading on the subject.

The following speaker quoted this: “What you would be doing in 1930s Germany is what you are doing now.”

Action item: A member of KMUN radio asks that we write to or call members of the Senate Committee on Appropriations asking that public radio continue to be funded.  Small rural stations like Astoria’s KMUN depend on federal funding far more than city stations do.

Afterwards, we were encouraged to sign up if we had interest in particular topics (education, environment, immigration, health care, equal rights).DSC06882.JPG).

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Allan took the opportunity to buy a women’s march copy of the Daily Astorian.

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Afterwards, we walked by the Fort George Brewery’s lower garden, also freshly mulched.  The ornamental grasses have been cut back since last time we went to the Blue Scorcher Café next door.

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Fort George garden

We walked by the temptations of the Blue Scorcher because we wanted to try out a new restaurant in Seaside, Oregon.

In Seaside, it was too wet and miserably windy to walk around and look at Pam Fleming’s city gardens.

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drive by photo

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Allan’s photo


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a new restaurant (Allan’s photo)


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Allan’s photo

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a warm and simple place


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Allan’s photo


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something so sweet on the menu


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many choices

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I had to try the cauliflower appetizer, hoping that it would be similar to the zahra from Seattle’s Mediterranean Kitchen…and it was.

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Allan’s chicken sandwich

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The tasty baba ganoush had pickled on it; I just put them to one side because I’m not used to that.  All food is made fresh so I bet I could ask for no pickles next time, and there will be a next time.

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the turnaround at the end of Broadway


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Pam’s garden on the turnaround (Allan’s photos)

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We shopped at Costco.  Wouldn’t this elaborate plastic apple container make an interesting little seedling greenhouse?

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stormy crossing of the Columbia on the way home: freighters at anchor, waiting


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light snow and fog on the hills on the Washington side of the bridge


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in the dusk, golden daffodils that someone once planted on the hillside

According to the weather forecast, we are due for several days of bad weather, possibly even light snow.  I will not mind reprising staycation.

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Friday, 3 March 2017

If you don’t enjoy progressive politix, you might want to skip this one, because that’s all we have on offer today other than some faux chickens at the very end.

In shockingly cold and windy rain, we drove north to the Naquaiya Studio for the pleasure of participating in a postcard party.

Part of the mission is a mass mailing to the preznit in mid March, coordinated from liberal groups all over the country.  Perhaps all it will do is inspire us.  I don’t expect it to change anything. The meetings are productive in another way as we have excellent conversation throughout.

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An excellent time was had by all.


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a studio filled with art

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me, Judy, and Yudy.

My mind is still boggled by how much Yudy looks and talks and laughs like a Judy I used to know.  The resemblance makes me smile every time.

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fuel

This ongoing group effort by local artists is all old folks, as far as I know.  I am especially pleased with how punk rock the postcards are.

Michelle had printed out all sorts of bits of topical text that she calls “pasties” to add to postcards.  She observed that the news changes so fast that some of them are outdated already.

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inspirational notes:

hope

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Yudy’s ideas for wording


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Yudy’s cards of the day


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a beauty, made by Carole

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also by Carole


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another by Carole

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by Carole’s friend

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Carole’s friend made these with a nice cut out for inserting the address.

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by a postcard-er with a beloved transgender family member


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four cards, fronts


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backs

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Seniors are mad!

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fronts


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backs

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backs

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These original pieces, by someone who wasn’t in attendance today, were especially interesting to me.

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face

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I just the straightforward simplicity of these to the point messages.

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woman

He has said so many terrible things about women.

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I am using seed catalogs to assemble postcards, so mine are pretty pretty.  Two of them are planned to be thank you notes for politicans who are defending the EPA.

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Whoever in government defends the environment next gets this one.

On the way home, Allan and I stopped at Dennis Co for a remarkably cheap sale on Rustoleum spray paint…not for graffiti, mind you, but for the repainting of my bamboo poles.

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Dennis Company store display

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Tomorrow, more politics, possibly mixed with a delicious lunch in Astoria.  I have a sad on that I might miss the next postcard party because of an ACLU training session.  These parties do my heart and energy good.

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