I’ve been away, and have lots of catching up to do with my blogging buddies. I hope you are all well. I will try to catch up with your writing soon!
Wednesday, David and I went on a hike with Dr. Tom, his lovely wife and their delightful twin boys. We had a picnic lunch beside the waters of Puget Sound, hiked through gorgeous woods and then returned to their house. David drove to retrieve Gregg after work, and brought him to the house, where we shared a delicious dinner with Dr. Tom’s family. We cherish this friendship.
The next day, we embarked on a trip to the eastern side of our state. The purpose of the trip was to visit two colleges, so that David could learn more about them, and to visit family members who live nearby.
Do you know much about Washington State? It has a lot of diversity within its boundaries, and the major dividing line is the Cascade Mountain range. I admire the eastern side of the state for its beauty and its gifts, but I don’t spend much time there. Being a water-lover, my home is in the west, beside the saltwater and the evergreens.
We headed east, driving over Snoqualmie Pass, and through the Yakima Valley, where I saw this billboard:
This statement is such a blatant distortion of the truth that we found it hilarious, and laughed out loud about it. Let me just say that, as someone who visits the Palm Springs area every year, there is NO connection between the two that I can find...other than the fact that both have a hot and dry climate.
Our first stop was in Walla Walla, a small, quaint town where some of my ancestors settled long ago, and built a mercantile business. We spent a night and an interesting day, hearing presentations at the school, and then drove north to Spokane, through flurries of snow, admiring beautiful rolling hills and the bright colors of the farmland.
People talk a lot about the "Washington Wine Country," and while I enjoy our wines, we have a long way to go in making the "wine tour" into all that it could be in the Pacific Northwest. There is a vast difference, for example, between driving from Yakima to Walla Walla, and driving through the northeastern wine country in France, from Strasbourg to Thann. How to put it? I think the French might be a bit shocked at the "rustic" quality of our wine country, at this point. But it has great potential!
In Spokane, David heard more college presentations and visited with friends who are attending school there; we took one of them out for lunch. Then we went to dinner at the home of our cousin, Kim, and his wife, Mary.
Kim is about 6’4” tall. He has very broad shoulders and a bit of a fiery temperament. He's mellower now; he says that Gregg was a calming influence on him throughout their growing years, and that Gregg kept him out of a fight, more than once.
Since this was a college-visiting trip, Kim and Mary put the “full court press” on David to choose a college in their town. It was sweet and funny to hear the “campaign,” and will be interesting to see what David decides. He has one more college to visit. Gregg and I are standing back, supporting him, but allowing him to decide for himself. It’s such a privilege and a joy to be with him this year as he visits these fine schools.
I am more aware than ever what a gift a college education is. I am deeply thankful to my parents for providing for mine!