THE WINDS OF CHANGE ARE BLOWING
It’s been windy here lately. One of my Wallowa County elders says the winds always indicate change. And sure enough, a recent policy change at the Observer does not provide for me to continue this column.
I went back to my first column, dated September 2, 2016 and read that I invited you for a ride as I explore the “tongue in cheek” moniker placed on me, “A Wallowa Gal.” Each week I looked forward to sharing my experiences here and the lessons learned from them. Within the canyons and spread across the broad vistas of my new home are fascinating people, each with a story to tell, and I was privileged to write articles about some.
I’m grateful for Andrew Cutler, editor, who gave me the opportunity to write for the Observer. I have a special affection for the Wallowa Life editor Cherise Kaechele, a bright, intelligent young woman with a teacher’s heart, who patiently taught me not only the nuances of writing for a newspaper, but explained what a “selfie” is.
The staff always had a friendly greeting for me, but maybe it was more for Petey. They loved to see him when we dropped by.
Yet there’s still more to learn about being a Wallowa Gal. I’m blogging now at awallowagal.com if you’d like to continue the ride.
This past weekend, a friend invited me to stay at her cabin while she was out of town. I stopped just before the creek crossing. “We just gotta do it,” I firmly told my dog Petey and Mosie Cat, whose eyes were fixed on me.
We made it fine.
I split wood before a soft rain descended for hours that afternoon. The previous weekend, I had attended Flora Days and from observing Vanessa Thompson with her cook stove, I was able to use the one in the cabin for warmth and food preparation.
The creek always gurgled nearby, and I wondered if it had risen any with the previous day’s rain.
“Can’t do anything about it anyway,” so I stopped worrying.
An evening walk found me gazing upon a magnificent hillside of wildflowers. What a lovely bouquet to end the day with.
I went to bed with a good tired. My intent in going there was to do a lot of writing and reading. But mostly I found mindless chores to do. I enjoyed the labor of it, and it was a pleasure to just be in the moment, doing the next right thing. I haven’t slept that sound in a long time.
I packed us up the next frosty morning and plunged through the creek all right. And as I remember that weekend, I think I might be gaining on being a Wallowa Gal.
Published June 22, 2016 in the La Grande Observer newspaper. Reprinted with permission.