prune picker

This is the blog of a prune picker. (Native born Californian) Retired oilfield. I am an old man. (91) I blog a lot about my body and getting old. As I approach death life gets more interesting. More interesting is not good. I still drive. I attend sports, music, and civic events. I am writing my memoirs. I attend swim class three times a week. Some of my blogs might be interesting. A lot of my blogs are silly and trivial. None are very long.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Indian Canoes at Fort Warden.

Several hundred Indians captured Fort Warden while I was visiting Chimacum. The Fort was built to keep the Japanese from capturing Seattle with naval forces. We had not considerd Indians in canoes! The Indians landed on the beach and set up an Indian village on the Fort parade grounds in front of Officers Row. In the third pic you can see a row of quaint Indian porta potties. In the bottom pic a canoe is backing in to the beach.

Every year the Indians of the Puget Sound area stage a mass canoe outing. The Indians row for about a week (20 to 30 miles per day) to a common point and pow wow for a week. This year they met at Meeks Bay at the mouth of the Straits of San Juan de Fuca. Several hundred canoes and many Indians are involved.

The group of Indians at Fort Warden had rowed from Port Gamble just prior to taking Fort Warden and were going to row to Sequim the next day.

Fort Warden is on the edge of Port Townsend. Fort Warden is where the movie "Officer and a Gentleman" was filmed.
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Friday, July 30, 2010

Chimacum Airplane

Monte Stimmel, a good friend, who was a neighbor at the Evergreen Coho Resort is busy building an airplane from a kit. It is a Thatcher CX-4 with a 2400 cc Hummel engine. It is all metal and a one seater.

Monte is building the plane at the Jefferson County International Airport. It is going to be some fine airplane. I noticed that the hanger where Monte is building the plane is as clean as a pin. The floor is spotless and so are all his tools.

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Roseburg Airplane

My nephew, Bob Mott, has been building an airplane from a kit for several years. Two years ago when I visited him the plane was laying all over his garage. Bob has almost finished building the plane and it is in a hanger at the airport.

The plane is a Rans s7s. It has a Rotak 912 ULS engine with 100 horsepower. Bob is about to start the engine up. It is a pretty plane. It has two seats, one behind the other. The lady is Janet Mott, Bob's wife. The big guy in a white shirt is me. I do not believe that I would fit in the kit! I have absolute faith in Bob's craftsmanship. He does things right!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Old Roseburg Turtles

Dorothy, my niece in Roseburg, Oregon has two old turtles. Mohamed is 90 and Duffy is 95. This type of desert tortoise can live for several hundred years. Dorothy is debating the options for the future of the guys when she is gone.

In top pic Dorothy is preparing the daily turtle meal of romaine and blueberries. The food is soaked in water. Middle pic is of Mohamed chowing down. He really like the blueberries. Bottom pic is of Duffy, who at 95 is a little slower than Mohamed.

Dorothy puts the guys to sleep every fall and gets them up the following spring. Dorothy has been boarding the turtles for 20 some years.
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Modesto Folks

I finally reached Modesto, California! It was so good to see Michael Monson and his family. I have been looking forward to seeing them. Michael is my youngest child. Michael, Rebecca, Lilly, and Drew Monson are lined up and anticipating supper in first pic. You can see that they enjoyed their food in bottom pic.

I will be in Modesto until Monday.

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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Walk with Jim Spaulding.

Jim Spaulding, Bill Friel, and I walked mornings for many years. I walked with Bill on my recent visit to Coho. Then I stopped by Vacaville to walk with Jim. Jim had told me for years about his walks in the morning around the shopping center near his home. I finally got to see it for myself. Very nice place to walk as you can see in the pics.

Jim is such a generous host. The night I arrived he said "I want to take you to a nice place for supper." When we arrived at the nice place it was closed. Hours were 7 am to 3 pm. Then Jim drove us to Chevy's, which is a fine Mexican restaurant. While we were waiting for our meals, the electrical power went out. Then he drove us to a Burger King. He told me that I could have my choice of anything on the Burger King menu. How generous can a man be?

Let me finish the story. The next morning he took me to the nice place and bought me a great breakfast. I think that I will visit Jim again!

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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Coho Alumni Meeting

The Vacaville California Chapter of the Coho Alumni met this evening. Present were Jim Spaulding, President and out of town visitor, Chuck Monson.

Most of the meeting was on how much fun it has been, being associated with the Evergreen Coho Resort.

After a walk with Jim in the morning I will head for Modesto.
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Dorothy & Harry plus Janet & Bob

I had such a nice visit with Dorothy and Harry Baumgardner at their place in Roseburg, Oregon. Dorothy is the oldest daughter of my sister Thelma. Dorothy's younger brother Bob lives nearby. One evening Bob and his wife Janet visited.

Dorothy and Bob were raised in Weedpatch and Taft. They spent a goodly amount of their lives working in the Kern County oil-patch. With such a background why would they want to live in the charming farming community of Roseburg, Oregon surrounded by beautiful tree covered mountains? It is hard to figure. Taft has such pretty sage brush covered hills.

Top pics are of Dorothy and Harry. Third pic is of deer in the Baumgardner field taken from the Baumgardner front porch. The last pic is of the Motts (Janet and Bob) and the the Baumgardners (Dorothy and Harry).

This trip is getting exciting. I have more nieces and nephews to visit.

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Monday, July 26, 2010

Report from Roseburg, OR

Had great visit in Roseburg that I will blog on soon. Will be Vacaville, CA tomorrow. Will walk with Jim Spaulding Wed morning and head for my son's home in Modesto.

Mileage to Washington was 2400 miles. Goofing around Chimacum and trip to Roseburg mileage was 1800 miles.

So trip mileage to now is 4200 miles.

Sunday, July 25, 2010


This is the best smile ever! Sure miss it.

I am in Roseburg, Oregon tonight. I drove down the Willamette Valley today. Jackie and I drove this stretch of road many times. Very pleasant ride. Nice farm land and mountains on both sides. Passed the 45th Parallel. Halfway between the Equator and the North Pole.

I am familiar with every rest stop along this route.

Miss you all very much!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Dallas the Camby Cougar.

That is Dallas with her Camby Cougar sweat shirt and Ensure in hand. One of her grandchildren was in the Camby High School Cougar Band. I feel much better after a second day of visiting with Dallas. When I woke her she said "I have to get up and entertain you." She is so sweet.

The doll under glass was made by her twin sister, Donna. Dallas was proud of it. Donna recently passed away and Dallas has been failing ever since. They used to talk on the phone every weekend.

I told Dallas that she was always so nice to me. She said "I try to be nice to everyone." As usual she is right.
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Friday, July 23, 2010

My Beloved Sister, Dallas.

This is my beloved sister, Dallas. I have not seen her for two years. I was startled, and sobered, by the changes that I see in her. She has lost a lot of weight, does not eat much, is tired all the time, and sleeps a whole lot. She will soon be 97. I can remember her as a teenager. When she was 19, I was 7. She was so lovely. She has always been a good friend and loving sister to me. I love her.

The house is her charming home in Oregon City, OR. Her son, Monte, and daughter in law, Lynna, live near by. Their oldest son, David Johnson lives with Dallas and provides almost full time care. He only works about half time so that he can be with her most of the time. Her family is taking such good care of her.

Dallas does not take any doctor prescribed drugs for any medical condition. I do so wish that her doctor could prescribe her a drug for the medical condition of old age.

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Thursday, July 22, 2010

Last night at Coho. Bingo with Irene and Elaine.

Last night (Wed the 21st) was my last night at Coho and I played bingo with some of the nicest people on earth! Two of them were Elaine Chapin and Irene Greening. (Elaine is on the left and Irene is on the right. Aren't they good looking women?) These two lovely ladies were good buddies of Jackie. They were so good for her and to her. The three played a lot of bingo together. Irene and Elaine have been so good to me. Irene loaned me the use of her motor home while I stayed at the Evergreen Coho Resort. Irene even picked me up to go to the senior supper. I was privileged to sit between them, a thorn between two roses!  I want to thank them and the other residents of the resort for being so friendly and nice to me during my three week visit. They made the drive worthwhile!

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Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Last day in Port Townsend. Seal head still intact.

Jackie and I quite often visited a little park on the beach in downtown Port Townsend. The carved log in the pic was carved and placed in the park new in the early 90s. One end of the log has a carving depicting three seals. Benches were carved in the middle of the log. When Jackie and I saw the seal heads we knowingly said to each other "Those heads will soon be knocked off by vandals". I am glad to say that we were wrong. The pics show the weathen beaten log and carving in good condition except for age and cracking.

I will catch an early ferry in the morning to start my trip home. I will probably take a month to get home.
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Birthday Lunch

Darlene Cathey and her sister Barbara Lasher took me out for a birthday lunch. I had a bowel of oatmeal and wheat toast. It was gourmet oatmeal from Snoqualamie Falls. Sure was good! Darlene and Barbara are dear Evergreen Coho friends since 1990. It was so nice of these ladies to take me out to lunch. I thank them. 85 is not so bad.

Darlene is the taller sister.

I had a wonderful birthday. I really appreciated all of the greetings from my family. It touched my heart and I am very grateful.

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