Thursday, July 23, 2015
POST 1462; LONGVIEW, WA; JULY 22, 2015
... and it is once again time to move on. Bob is near settled into his home and the home's yard is absent the jungle of berry vines, clinging vines, and a number of rather large NORWAY GREY RATS caught in Bob's traps.
SPIA and ME are going to carry out an alternate program. I see no need to further my own masikistic walks - walks to near exhaustion just to prove that old folks like me really can accomplish the unthinkable..."SPIA" = Seniors Performing Incredible Acts (or so says my 16 year old incarcerated supporter (in the Bellingham County Jail). I WILL walk, but minimally so. We will attempt to use SPIA (our 1995 MAZDA MPV) to reach more places than when only walking. Feel I have little more to prove and hope to discover more interesting places and events by using the vehicle to range farther afield.
Home of my Nephew, Dale, who has lived and worked closely with me for some 40 + years in both New York and Washington State. Thank you once again for being the perfect host, Dale.
View last night from my Bedroom.
This is the Green River (Duwamish River) at the exact spot where each Summer from 1941 to 1945 us brothers JIM (age 4), JAY (age 9) and I (age 6) spent our lunch hours while working for - at first - the Japanese Truck Farmers near Kent, Washington. The Japanese Farmers disappeared into the Concentration Camps...a travesty in US History.
These summers were in of themselves, worthy of a sizable book.
The Truck Farms are today a fashionable Golf Course...above photo taken this morning...July 22, 2015 from the MEEKER Street Bridge spanning the river...the same bridge we walked so many times some 70 years ago.
We brothers had no prepared food. Each day, we picked veggies from the fields we worked on, walking to the Green River for a swim and Lunch. Each day we walked (to the Kent Valley and back home to the Stump Ranch) some five miles each way. SPINACH is still one of my favorites.
We were left to fend for ourselves as Mother and Dad were fully employed in "Defense" sensitive jobs ... Mother a true "Rosie The Riveter" at Seattle's Boeing Airplane factory helping build the thousands B-17 Flying Fortress...and Dad for Lee and Eastes, trucking bombs and such between Seattle and Portland, Oregon.
...and we would never think of misbehaving. ALL our $ earnings were SAVED in War Bonds...all of which were given over to the family at the end of the WAR (WWII) to help purchase our family trucking company, Tri-City Freightlines sited in the town of PASCO, Washington.
One day we found a five dollar bill on 240th - next to the present day college -. We walked on to downtown Kent where we purchased all the candy, games and underwear we could carry. We stopped off at the Army Camp on Meeker Street, giving all our treasures to the soldiers.
We really did try to do our part.
Our home, The Stump Ranch was isolated and alone - and still is - deep in the woods a few blocks West of Old Highway 99. Around 1941 a Drive In Theatre was built at the corner of Highway 99 and 240th Street. This is a photo of where the last row of Speakers hung from their posts - which movie-goers hung from the driver-side door window to listen to the movie projected on a huge silver screen sometimes a city block away. Me and Jim liked to turn the speaker's volume up full...climb one of the trees - just like in the above pic...and enjoy one of the benefits of being among the unsung war heroes...viewing first-run movies.
Us kids also set up a booth on old 99 Booth selling black berries, huckle berries and salmon berries
we picked ourselves. No, we did NOT spend the money, but did gain a world of experience learning what hard work does ... yes, even by "babies", whch we certainly were...
Today's young....begging a hand out. Learning the value of receiving donations during my 5 + years walking America, I gave the man a ten dollar bill and wished him well.
I am hesitent to comment on such matters, but speak my mind when I say our society does such needy no favors. Such handouts without an effort on the beggar's part to contribute to the "family" is only destructive because it denies the recipient of the RIGHT to contribute something back...
US Highway 99 as it passes through MIDWAY, Washington. The Stump Ranch was and still is some 5 blocks into the forest to the right. A trail still snakes past the small stream and pond where Jim and me played out Huckleberry Finn some 70 years ago.
Stopped to chat with the bikini-clad ladies at this Midway shop. No pictures allowed !!!
...but I assure you more and better is seen at most small town swimming pools. When I explained I was blogging my way across America, the two scantily clad ladies screamed "OUT...GET AWAY" as they slammed shut the sliding window, blocking it shut with a stick on the inside.
This imprompto "church" pleading the cause of the early return of JESUS, the poster in the next photo pleaded the cause of ...not really for whom it pleaded.
This is a large ROCK buried in the back yard of The Stump Ranch.
Little did I know some 70 years ago that it would become world recognized as a "religious" object of sorts. Some weeks ago our Mud River Church ... yes, Sally's Church ! ...
Our Pastor explained that before being nailed to The Cross, JESUS CHRIST was beaten with a CAT OF NINE TAILS. Hearing such news, I thought, "Shucks, Brother Jim and Me were beaten - with our bare hind end exposed from laying across the seat of the kitchen chair - ... whipped on a regular basis by DAD upon his return home from his run to Portland or Yakima."
Pleading innocent did not work for Jim or Me. Having no PROOF of a crime, DAD simply clarified his need to punish for those things we did that he didn't hear about.
Jim found DAD's CAT OF NINE TAILS hidden in the rafters of the cow barn. Together we jammed that CAT deep into the crack in the above pictured ROCK...using a screwdriver and hammer to get it deep into the interior. THEN, we mixed up some Portland Cement, carefully sealing that CAT for ever ... or at least until DAD wasn't around any more. Often wondered if we would bewrong to say, "Forgive him for he knew not what he did."
Really doubt it because he simply shifted to whacking our bare Hind ends with his metal studded leather razor belt.
Around age 45 I forgave him deciding I probably did deserve to be beaten.
The Stump Ranch July 22, 2015.
Our Crypt "STONE" can be seen Center Left.
After close inspection, I can pretty much certify that DAD's CAT OF NINE TAILS is still safely tucked deep inside.
The Stump Ranch July 22, 2015. Our STONE is visible in the far center left.
Jim and Me slept in a single bed in the room top center. The floor had no covering of the rafters. Under threat of severe punishment on slipping off a rafter on our way down the stairs and across the driveway to the two-holer across the driveway, Jim and Me took to peeing out the window...or in really cold nights (we had no heat, you see) simply down the exposed wall studs.
For general information, our home looks as it did on that 1945 day of May 05, when moved away forever.
I have never really left. Over the years I returned, checked the aging cement, and told stories to new tenents of how their home was built from lumber stolen from Boeing's pile of boxes used to ship the wings of the B-17 flying Fortress...and how Jim and my pounded thousands of nails from those pilfered planks.
The CAT story is told here for the first time...or at least I think so.
240th Street from old 99 West to the beautiful seaside town of Des Moines, Washington.
Old MASONIC Retirement Home, Des Moines, Washington...now private property...OK, just read the notice in the following pic.
View of PUGET SOUND from the entrance of the old MASONIC Retirement Home.
The big white circle is a water pool...empty of water on this, July 22, 2015.
Des Moines, Washington Field House where as a 6-year old Second Grader, I was thrilled to see an Indian Show performed. I memorized (most) of an Indian Ballad which I often sing on many a lonely night as I walk hither and yon across America (forgot the third verse):
In the distance I see
a dear Tee Pee
where my loved one is waiting for me;
By the camp fire she stands
with out stretched hands
where she's waiting and watching foe me
(Third forgotten verse)
Then away I will ride
with my love by my side
and she soon my Bride will be
When Queen of the West
she will soon rule best
'or the land of my prairie dreams
Des Moines Field House
Field House Sports Field... where in 1942. I was cheated by Ralph S. during the Easter Egg Hunt.
Found an egg with the name John written on it, Ralph told me that egg had to be put back as it belonged only to John.
Found - and put back - Peter's egg...followed by David's egg.
Was truly hurt when Ralph won a prize for the eggs I put back. Was years - many years 'till I discovered how he did that.
Front entrance to Des Moines Elementary School.
At the Des Moines Marina ... looking down into salt water where live the world's monster octopus. I witnessed a 19 foot diameter octopus caught by hand by free diver at 100 feet under water under Tacoma's Narrows Bridge.
Am told the record octopus caught in near by Puget Sound waters is 32 feet diameter.
Des Moines Marina. Am told my first Salmon fishing trip was from this spot. Am told I was three months old, making the cruise in a 16 foot row boat. 'course, had a difficult time just seeing over the sides of my apple box cradle.
...my early reward for the coming CAT beatings for things I probably did not do ?...HHhhhmmmmm
Please say HELLO to my new friend, MARGORIE
We met photographing the same yachts...and enjoyed the next interlude discovering stuff while over looking the waters of Puget Sound.
Yes, Sally...don't lose the faith !
This is the corner of my 1966 Secretary, JANICE.
JANICE took her final breath at this spot near Des Moines and The Stump Ranch when her friend lost control of his car, being broad sided by an on coming car. Often think of JANICE
Look closely. MARGORIE is walking away from our too few moments this afternoon.
* * * * * * * * * *
Am creating this blog update at Mc D's near Longview, Washington. Started working on it at 5:30 PM. It is now 1:15 the next morning. Think walking is tuff ??? Nothing compared to the effort involved to create a lucid story from memories and a few photographs.
Will try to sleep in SPIA here in the Mc D parking lot.
In the morning will drive south to Portland, Oregon...then cross Mt. Hood to BEND, Oregon and East to BURNS, Oregon where Daughter and her growing family are expanding the population of Oregon's High Desert.