Hillside jumps

Hillside Student Community, the lovely small school where Karen and I teach, is a pretty remarkable place. Student teacher ratio of about 4/1; super academics; amazing group of kids from grades 5-12.

For the first time in its history, we’re seriously concentrating on development and PR. Here’s a photo I took on Friday of our kids at the end of the school day. I’m thinking of making it into a banner for school promo events.

Koons at Versailles by Lomont

For the first time in Europe, Jeff Koons has a big exhibition of his sculptures; he is invited to show them in Chateau de Versailles. A big debate has started between those who find this show cool and funny and the others who shout it is a pure scandal. What do you think ?

(click twice on photos to fully enlarge)



Attached here is the cover to the second issue – from April 1969 – of the Northwest Passage, the splendid and long-lived (although no longer) tabloid that was Bellingham’s contribution to the “underground press” of the late 1960s and after.  Many of those connected at one time or another with the paper – and there were through its life many hundreds – meet irregularly as members of the Old Fools Society or Old Fools Salon or Old Fools Forces or some other Old Fools.  Now this far-flung membership is using the web to ween about a 40th anniversary of the NWP founding and, perhaps, to “repeat” the historical group pose that appears below.  This is an extended call for help in naming those captured here in the Spring of 1969 on some enchanted old porch in Bellingham or near it. (Mouse it to enlarge it.)

Wallingford Four – 10/10/8

Four snaps from today, Friday the tenth of October.   The fly and the monkeys are from a porch on Bagley Avenue.  The flower from the Good Shepherd campus P-Patch.   And The Mountain from the corner of 42nd Street and 1st Avenue N.E. – all in Wallingford.  (All – or nearly all – may be “moused” for enlargement.)

Good Shepherd Quartet: 10/7/8

Like most of the other subjects posted here since we changed our blog-programmer, these four panoramas of Good Shepherd can be enlarged with a tap of the mouse.  They were all recorded this Tuesday afternoon of October 7, 2008.  And they are presented in the order that I visited them as part of my regular walk through the Good Shepherd grounds or campus.  I was cheerfully told by two pedestrians that today was supposed to have been overcast and wet.  One used the word “dismal” and the other “nasty”.  Instead we were spared the rain and got instead performing clouds with sunshine between them.  I entered the campus at the Bagley Avenue entrance at about four in the afternoon and left it about thirty minutes later.

The top pan is of the Meridian Play Field, the most westerly part of the campus.  It is managed by the park department more directly than the rest of the campus.

The next pan is of Tilth’s workhouse/greenhouse, which has also a green or planted roof.

The third pan looks northwest from Tilth’s teaching garden to the same structure and part of the P-Patch attended to by Wallingford neighbors.  On the far side of the screen of trees is the Meridian Play Field.

The last pan shows the Good Shepherd Center against today’s playful sky.  Once a Catholic school for girls – many of them from troubled homes – the structure and campus celebrated its centennial last year.  The restored chapel on the top floor has become a popular concert venue with admired acoustics.

Injured Landmark

At the Wallingford corner of Eastern Avenue and 42nd Street stand two of the tallest American Elms in Seattle.  There are no witnesses to their age and neighbors hope that the rings may never be counted.  The trees can be seen prominently from the Ship Canal Bridge on I-5.  Together these twins are the largest green mass around.  A few years ago the twin to the east began to crack between its two high branches.  The owners then of the corner house had a cable run between them.  The sudden molesting wind that blew through the north end (at least) on the afternoon of Saturday Oct. 4, did not break the cable, but it did snap a limb from the east landmark and dropped it to the front lawn.  About one hundred feet away and heading for the trees to take my several daily photographs of them, I heard the snap and saw the limb fall.   If it had held on for a minute more I’d have been standing beneath as I do with the three photographs attached here in a row, looking up the north side of the west elm watching the limb approach me — and just miss me.  Find the hole or identify the missing limb when it was still in place in two of the three views.   The limb is missing, far right, on the afternoon of Oct. 4 2008.  It is in tact, at the center, in the afternoon of Feburary 28, 2007, and also intact, far left, on the afternoon of Oct. 1, 2008.  In a fourth photograph at the top the limb is lying on the front lawn of the  home at the northeast corner of 42nd Street and Eastern Avenue.

(Mouse the triptych to enlarge it.)

Gary Stonemetz and his Pink Ladies

Last week, we paid a surprise visit to Gary in his orchard late in the day. He had just finished spraying and we found him cleaning his tanks on a cloudy evening.

This time of year, his days are long. Production manager at Johnson Foods in Sunnyside by day, Gary makes a bee line to his orchard in the afternoon and works into the night. His pink ladies are the best I’ve eaten and true connoisseur that he is, Gary’s never gotten tired of them himself.

He pointed out hail damage from a couple weeks ago. A direct hit and a sideswipe left its marks.

The weather’s been especially wild this year, with a late cold spring shouldering well into summer and a very late freak frost; another week or two of heat wouldn’t hurt to sweeten things up. Gary holds off picking as late as he can, hoping to harvest by the beginning of November. But when the first big freeze threatens, he calls in the pickers and it’s a race to the finish.

Howard is a big fan and unabashedly grabs an armful of these beauties whenever he drops by.

The two of us head to Seattle with a load of goathorn peppers and a couple dozen apples, and Gary’s back on his tractor.

Tardy Spring / Tardy Fall – Revealed

With the last posting (directly below this one) I promised a return with evidence that like this year’s spring, so this fall is late by a few days.  The comparison below of the blossomed cherry trees at the southeast corner of 46th and Corliss were taken one year apart.  The top of the two on March 27, 2008 and the bottom of the two one year earlier, where the budding is further along and the petals are dropping.   This flowering comparison is followed by another from Sept 27, 2008 (on the top of the bottom two) and at the bottom, one year earlier.   The difference here is subtler than with the blossoms, but real enough in the reds of the turning leaves.  I will not name the types of several trees that appear there at the northeast corner of 46th  and Burke in hopes that a reader will respond with their names.  Another reason is that I don’t myself known the names.  So, if you can, please help both nature and me.

(Tapping these pairs with a mouse will make them bigger.)

One day more and I returned to the northeast corner of 44th Street and Wallingford Avenue to repeat a tree I first notice many years ago for its brilliant fall color.  I tagged it the “Flame Tree.”  However, today, Monday Sept. 29, 2008, it was still in the summer greens seen here direclty below.  Below it and two years ago, on Sept. 27, 2006, the Flame Tree was far into its fire.

Now & Then here and now