This blog is closing down

This probably won’t create much stir. I don’t use my WordPress blog much anymore – at least not enough to justify the annual charge – especially since there is Facebook.

I have kept my domain and hope to have it route elsewhere soon. Either another blog or website – for now, I will just use e-mail and Facebook. When I get something else up and running I may phase out Facebook as well.

Time will tell.

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Last summer’s hike in Slovenia

The 2018 Distant Journeys catalog of guided international hiking trips arrived a few days ago and, lo and behold, the photo adorning the Julian Alps trip offering was of our group on the July hike last year. This photo happened to be taken on my 65th birthday as we finished a picnic lunch near the top of Slemenova Špica near Vrsic Pass. Our three guides are seated – Roman, seated on the right, was our main Slovenian guide working for Trek Trek; Pam, in the middle, was soon retiring from Distant Journeys in Maine; “Dom”, who was only with us part of the time, was a Slovenian college student also working for Trek Trek. It was a fabulous time. The food and accommodations were excellent, the hiking was stimulating, and the scenery was outstanding. I highly recommend visiting Slovenia as well as Distant Journeys and Trek Trek.


We may be doing an England Coast-to-Coast tour in 2019 with Kathy’s sister Nan and her husband Jeff as we did Slovenia – maybe through Distant Journeys again. However, this summer we are rafting the Grand Canyon with our friends John and Donna through Arizona Raft Adventures.

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Who knows where the time goes?

How I love my city! What a gorgeous, vibrant town Seattle is. The views from the top of The Needle, especially of The Mountain, The Sound, and Olympics, with the changing of the seasons and the pensive music, bring a wistful aching to my heart. It makes me long to sit on the porch or patio in West Seattle and watch the ferries plying their routes back and forth during a long, late summer sunset.

In the lower right corner of the first shot sequence (and partway through the second shot sequence) you can see my former place of employment, KING-TV, being torn down – from January 2015 when I still worked there (I retired on April 1st 5015) to a big hole in the ground awaiting new construction at the end of 2017.

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Pouring today

Rain is not the only thing pouring in our neighborhood today.

There is a house under construction across the street and the foundation is finally being poured.

The original house sat empty for over a year as its condition continued to decline. The previous owner had lived there with her husband since the house was built in the early 60s (same era as our house). The widow moved out a couple of years ago and a neighbor down the street bought the house. Tear-down and rebuild made more sense than renovation but it took a while for the plans to come together. The tear-down took place this summer – and then a wait. They dug a hole – and then waited. In the meantime, the tall white tank on the left was installed to hold the groundwater and runoff collecting in the hole (the water table is high here). When walking by, you could hear the sump pump running and see the blue 3″ hose expand with flowing water. The blue “shop-vac” truck or one like it would come several times a day to empty the holding tank. The lot sits on the uphill side of a golf course and I’m sure the country club does not want construction site runoff flowing across the fairway.

Concrete forms went a couple of weeks ago but a “pineapple express” brought warm air across the Pacific from Hawaii and dumped a lot of rain on us. The weather looks wet for the next couple of days but the forecast clears out starting Sunday afternoon with a dry week following. I heard a truck pull in this morning and heard the sounds of pumps and motors but it turned out to be the concrete pump/boom truck. A bit later, I heard the whine of the vacuum and stepped out to the above scene – three ready-mix trucks lined up for the pour and the vacuum hose running directly into the excavation. Things are progressing again.

Now, if only we could get our contractor to finish the last 8′-10′ of our driveway!

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Meet Trump for Breakfast and chew the fat?

The (not my) President is SO nice. He is giving folks the chance to be flown New York to meet him for breakfast and tell him how great you think he’s been doing. He doesn’t trust the media (good thing I’m retired) and wants to hear from citizens first hand.

Of course, he and his campaign committee are looking for a contribution for 2020 but I figure if he is SO rich, he doesn’t need any money from a retired senior citizen. Not even three dollars. Besides, since this is a sweepstake, the law says that being chosen cannot be contingent on whether you contribute or not.  If one looks within the fine print (which I did), one can find the non-contributor entry link. I have placed a copy of the link below. If you click on the link, you will find that the entry it is auto-filled with my information so, since I have already entered, please replace my name, e-mail address, and zip code with your own. But that’s not much of a hassle, is it? Especially if it means you have a chance to tell Donald what you truly think of him. Wouldn’t it be great if there were lots and lots of non-contributing entries – from people who really, really have something to say to Mr. Trump? Feel free to share this opportunity with all of your friends. Thank you!

Breakfast with Trump sweepstakes link

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Hilarious… but Sad.

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The Staves begin their US tour at the Tractor

Kathy and I have been fans of The Staves for several years – three sisters from Watford, UK now residing in Wisconsin. We saw them at the Triple Door when they first appeared in Seattle on June 16th 2013. Last night, we met friends Gregg and Leona at the Tractor Tavern in Ballard and saw The Staves perform as they kicked off another US tour. Their music has evolved from primarily acoustic to more amplified and processed but their voices still harmonize and soar beautifully (and occasionally trigger flashbacks of the late 60s and early 70s).


They noted that their tour bus had last been used by Donald Trump and, with some grimacing, commented on the smell of spray tan, wondered which bunk(s) he had used, and where his tiny little hands had touched.

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From the NEW American Songbook

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“It’s funny ’cause it’s treason.”

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Ohhh… we are so screwed.

Some more substantive tweets from inside the White House

Many thanks to whomever is putting their job at risk – stay safe!

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