Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Travel plans shift in time and place . . .

I thought we'd be traveling in August.

But we may  not go afar.

Our dearest daughter has fallen, broken her ankle badly, and will be immobile for about three months -- or so the doctors say. So, travel plans are shelved. For now.

Instead, I'm thinking of hosting a few travel blogs, perhaps one or two a week, to those places I hope to go one day.

My primary research interests remain: Scotland, Tasmania, and here in the states, the Pacific Northwest and Western Canada. Of course my lens is curiously set at mid 19th Century, but if I can't go physically, perhaps online will do to get a sense of the colors and shapes of the landscape and perhaps a bit of the history as well.

What do you think? Any locations to add to the list? Memories of places once visited you'd like to visit again? Should I invite others to guest blog?

I'm remembering a crowded pier, sea lions basking in early morning light, somewhere south of Neskowin and Newport. Hot coffee before driving further south. Flower gardens and then the redwoods.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Planning for a Sea Change . . .

Later in August, we'll be traveling for just a week to 10 days. A little camping to try out the new tent. And if it's too hot, we'll stay in air conditioned hotels. At this point, we're swinging down through Washington to visit friends in Portland, maybe over to the Olympic Peninsula, then back up to Seattle, maybe to see a Mariner's game by August 25. That's pretty specific.

 This time, the stops along the way are my job. As I finish the summer by finishing up two major writing projects, the next book beckons. Set some time between 1842-1845, the characters from the McDonnell clan will come to the Pacific Northwest, just as the first wagon train arrives in Oregon. Just as British and American interests collide. So my list of places to stop so far include:

  •  Fort Vancouver National Historical Site (Oregon and Washington), the headquarters of the Hudson's Bay Company where English and Chinook jargon were the primary languages, where the McDonnell saga began so long ago when I saw a sign saying Scots, Hawaiians and Native Americans worked here.
  • Fort Nisqually (DuPont, Washington, near Tacoma), the first trading post on the Puget Sound, where John Flett emigrated in 1841 from the Red River settlement in Manitoba (too late for this exhibit).
  • Fort Astoria on the Lower Columbia (Astoria, Oregon), used between 1830-1848 by the Hudson's Bay Company as a salmon fishery. Tight ties here between Hawaiians, Americans, and Brits. Excellent background here on early history. Maybe camping at Fort Stevens State Park or at Fort Columbia (both part of Lewis & Clark historic sites).
  • Fort Langley and Fort Victoria, both in British Columbia, probably not possible this trip.
  • Fort Spokane. A small museum and camping here, just 32 miles west of Spokane, near Davenport.
  • Sequim. I still remember our last visit here, found a great Thai restaurant, Sawadee Thai Cuisine, with traditional black rice pudding.
  • Olympic Peninsula. What could be better on such a trip than hiking in the Olympic Peninsula? Hre's a resource page on Native Americans and the Olympic Peninsula.

Also useful:

Anything related to artist Paul Kane who, with the permission of the Hudson's Bay Company, traveled to Fort Vancouver and Fort Victoria from 1846-1848. I'm fascinated by his painting of Mt. St. Helens, which erupted in 1847. See this wonderful book, Paul Kane's Great Nor' West by Diane Eaton and Sheila Urbanek -- and an online gallery of his paintings/sketches.

Night Eruption, Mt St Helens (Paul Kane, 1847)

Native Peoples of Oregon Need much more here. I'm remembering a special performance somewhere along the coast that we attended about a decade ago thanks to Sandy and Peter Jensen that featured story telling and dancing. Maybe the Tillicum Cruise out of Seattle would work as a start. And there's the University of Oregon Museum in Eugene. Here's an exceptionally helpful travel guide to Native Americans in Washington State

Northwest Coast Hawaiians and the Hudson's Bay Company and this useful timeline showing Hawaiian presence on the Pacific Northwest coast. Found a reference to Fort Spokane and Hawaiians! Exciting conclusion to this morning's research: Downloaded James Ho's Untold Fragments of Hawaii's History

Festivals this summer in Washington Parks and in Tacoma on August 11, the 7th annual "In the Spirit: Northwest Native American Arts Festival" (Washington State History Museum).  

So much for trip planning. I think it's easier to throw things in a suitcase, get a list of used book stores, grab the camera, and hit the road.

So, do you have any suggestions for our trip?

May your own traveling this summer go well.

Thursday, July 04, 2013

Day Tripping . . . for Quilts!

Two weeks ago, we took a jaunt over to Coeur d'Alene in Idaho to see the North Idaho Quilters "Quilted Gems" quilt show. We got to talk with Jean Schute, the featured quilter, and enjoyed meandering around this lovely quilt show. So much to enjoy, so many inspiring quilts!

Once home, I wanted to see if I could make a video of my favorite photos. So here, courtesy of Picasa and YouTube, is a short (roughly two minute) video of Jean Schute's quilts, along with a few other highlights. Jean is an accomplished art quilter, and her quilts are vibrant, a true pleasure.

The Washington State Quilters has added a new category -- MODERN QUILTS -- for our October quilt show. Check out the registration form at http://wsqspokane.org

And here's my slide show, with music!