Story 18Nov2022: Friday with Barb

Today Susie’s sister Barb flew in from Michigan to help celebrate Susie’s 60th birthday this Sunday. Barb arrived with no drama and escaped from the snow in the east.

My day started at 7ish, and I did one work meeting; I was late because I had started the blog and got writing and overlooked the time. It is the weekly and only staff meeting I am invited to, so I hate to miss it even on my day off.

After that, I continued to write the blog, had a breakfast of the last cream cheese danish and a banana with liberal coffee, and then got dressed. While writing, I watched the robins out my window, enjoying the apples on and fallen from my tree. The cats continued to patrol, and I was always surprised when they used their claws to climb the fence. It is another sunny cold morning with a more frigid wind than the air temperature.

The Coho Wind, its official name, is the cold air from the high desert (3,000 feet/914m) in Easter Oregon that runs East to West and originates from air flowing downhill from the high desert through the Columbia River Gorge and slamming into Portland and blasting over the local hills into the valley. The wind is often much colder than the local air and will kill plants exposed to freezing and worse air (20F/-7C is not unheard of for this wind). More exotic and tender plants must be grown near houses and behind wind-blocking fences/walls. The winds are complex and, for years, might not hit hard; often, a well-tended exotic/tender plant will grow out of its protection and then be killed or burned by an extended cold Coho Wind.

Returning to the narrative, once I was ready, I headed a bit early to PDX (we call our airport by its official letters–it has never been named after someone or a place–it is just PDX). Traffic was a bit heavy for a mid-morning and a Friday, but I was twenty minutes early. Now that it is open again, I parked at the top with a view of all the mountains. It was a clear day, unusual in November, and I could see all of Mount St. Hellens (what is left), Hood, and a tiny piece of Rainier showing above a local volcanic ridge. Yes, those hills and cliffs near Portland are ash cones and lava flows. We reside on the Ring of Fire.

Barb arrived without incident, and we took the tunnel to the elevator and were out of the airport (unlike many other airports) in a snap. I remembered using my AMEX instead of taking a paper card, so I used the AMEX to leave–no paper waste. Technology works!

Susie was waiting for us when we got to the hummingbird house. Jennifer, the nurse aide for the week, said Susie could not sleep as she was excited to have her sister visit for her birthday. So we got out Susie’s heavy leather jacket and bundled Susie up, and Barb and I headed into now cold and windy Metzger Park. Barb discovered the Coho Winds–the winds are brutal here and cold. We made a short spin through the park, called Leta (Susie’s mom), did a quick FaceTime, and then headed back to the hummingbird house.

We hung out with Susie for a while. Susie was uncomfortable as she had some cramping. So we headed out with Susie starting with lunch and then a nap. Barb and I took Air Volvo to the Volvo Cave, dropped off Barb’s stuff, and then had lunch at the Reedville Cafe.

Reedville is the area I live in and is an unincorporated area then is mostly a memory. Mr. Reed, as in Reed College, had a farm in the area, and a small village and post office named for him existed until the late twentieth century. The Columbus Day Storm destroyed many of the businesses in Reedville, marking the beginning of the end. Now Reedville is a historical name for an area–just a dot on very detailed maps.

The Cafe by the same name is the old crab shack on the highway, now grown into a local food joint. It is one of the few old and non-chain restaurants in the area. They still service comfort food with a few nods to more recent food directions on the menu. Barb’s French Dip was good, and I had a tuna melt (made with bacon).

We were now fed were sleepy, and we took a rest. Barb arranged the gifts she brought Susie for Susie’s birthday. Then, we headed back to the hummingbird house for a second visit. Susie was still in bed; she was waiting for us to show up before she had dinner. Barb set up a lighted tree for Susie (not just a Christmas tree) and hung out with Susie for a while. We watched 1/2 of a Perry Mason show (in black and white, but someone had perfectly scanned the original film–I have never seen such detail before) with Susie before heading out.

We needed no more food, so we headed back to the Volvo Cave, and Barb arranged some more items before heading to bed (the flight and the time differences had her off to bed early). I watched the last of Doctor Who season five (Matt Smith) with a bagel for a snack (I need to take my pills with food) and went to bed a bit early too.

I woke up a few times and night and had a headache in the early morning.

It was good to have Barb here, and we look forward to a lovely weekend.

Thanks for reading.

Feel free to call or send cards. Susie resides at:

Allegiance Senior Care

Adult Foster Care Home

9925 SW 82nd. Ave.

Portland, Oregon 97223

The house phone number: (503) 246-4116


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