April 16, 2010

Potatoes and Skyscrapers

This has been one of those weeks where our loads have made me question how our system operates. Maybe you can make more sense of this than I can.

Wednesday afternoon, we delivered in Mount Vernon, WA and then drove north to Lynden, WA and loaded seed potatoes.

We drove all night long to get to Ashton, ID where we delivered the load yesterday.

Then we drove 7 miles down the road, loaded seed potatoes, and drove all night long to Wallace, NE where we just delivered.

Now we are zipping over to Alliance, NE where we are loading....ready?....seed potatoes, and taking them to North Dakota, northeast of Bismark.

My question is, why are these people not saving their own seed potatoes, since they obviously have enough in the are to sell to someone. At least buy them from local surplus. I realize if people actually did this, I would have been out of a job this week, but please!

And we wonder why things cost so much! Its shipping!

On our run to Washington from California, we ended up stopping for a few hours sleep in Oregon instead of driving straight through. As a result, I was able to get a few pictures of some skyscrapers, both natural and man-made.

Have you ever had the frustrating experience of believing you got some great shots on your camera, only to discover later that they are less than what you desired? I'm sure you all have had that pleasure.

Well because most of my pictures are taken while Malcolm is driving, I don't have time to adjust the exposure, etc. I thought my pictures looked good on the little tiny screen on my camera, but upon loading them on the computer I discovered that they were too bright, and it was a hazy day too so that didn't help.

Regardless, I'm posting what I got.

We reached Portland around noon. Unfortunately, I was busy reading a blog and didn't realize we were there, until we had passed the picturesque part of the city. So no Portland pictures, only this...

For the first time ever, we had to wait in traffic on I-5 while the draw bridge over the Columbia River was raised and lowered.
We were fortunate enough to be near the front of the line. But as we sat there, for at least 5 minutes, maybe longer, I considered the amount of traffic on I-5. Can you imagine how far it must back up during 5 minutes of a total stop? So glad we were near the front!

There appeared to be a lot of boats also waiting on the west side of the bridge...or maybe they just like to do their boating there?

I had a picture of Mt Hood in the distance, but it was so hazy that in the picture, you can't even see the mountain.

On across the river, as we headed north, Mount Saint Helens (I think) peaked at us from across the tops of the trees. It was actually visable from Portland, but I couldn't get a clear shot of it. I'm glad I waited, but even this picture was a miracle. Too many trees in the way, thought they did set the mountain off nicely. 8,365 feet

A couple hours later, Mt Ranier raised its peak up and gave us a peek at it as we neared the Tacoma/Seattle area. 14,411 feet

The size of these peaks always amaze me. I don't think they are that much larger than my Montana mountains, but I guess because they stand by themselves, they are more impressive to me, more noticable.

The area between just south of Tacoma and on northward of Seattle is really just one long city. All the suburbs just melt into each other. I can't say where one city ends and the next begins. But the actual "downtown" city areas make their presense known.

near Tacoma, Washington -

After 4 years of driving I can probably count on one hand the number of times we've been up here. We just don't get to this area of Washington...ever! The few times we have, we've headed south or east without nearing the famous skyline of Seattle. We also seem to always hit it after dark.

So to come through Seattle, during the day, on a clear and beautiful day I might add, was a treat. And we stayed on I-5 instead of taking the 405 so we went right by huge skyscrapers.

I'm not a fan of city life and I can't say that I was sorry to put the traffic and congestion behind us, but I will admit that it is a pretty city, that its skyscrapers were more appealing in appearance than most, and that I could see why my Mom enjoyed her visit so much a few years ago. I could see a visit to Seattle being a worthwhile trip to make one day, but I still enjoy God's skyscrapers more than man-made ones.

By the time we loaded the seed potatoes and headed south it was past "rush hour" which was a blessing because we had to go back through part of the city congestion and it was my turn to drive. All night we rolled, with my shift ending around 2:00am. The city was beautiful, but there is nothing in the world better than unzipping the curtain between the cab and sleeper and being greeted by a glorious Montana morning.

near Anaconda, MT just west of Butte

The area of Idaho we delivered and loaded in was just south of Yellowstone, and directly west of the Teton Mountains. These are the Three Tetons. We used to drive this road 4 times a week through the Yellowstone area and down through eastern Idaho on our produce run from California to Billings. I'm rather attached to that road. It feels like coming home.

13,770 feet

We'll be in North Dakota in the morning and from there...who knows. Mark, the broker, has our next load already to be picked up tomorrow, but he hasn't given us any details yet. I figured our miles for the week so far. By tomorrow morning in Pettibone, ND we'll have racked up about 4400 miles, and we'll still have another trip to add to that. Looks like we'll be making up for last weeks shortage.

Before I go, I have a two things to share, and a question:

First I'd like to thank Missy for featuring Between You, Me and the Fencepost on her "Follow Friday" blog post. It means a lot to me that random strangers find my ramblings worth reading and even sharing with others.

Question: My blogger has an issue. For the past week I've been unable to click and drag pictures to get them arranged in the post. Its a long tedious task to move them down a little, then move scroll a little and move the picture a little more. What is up with that? What button have a clicked without knowing. Please advise...its really annoying!

And last, but most certainly not least, is John Beckett. Thank you for your continued prayers. He was taken off his respirator on Tuesday and is breathing on his own, and I believe his mom and dad got to hold him yesterday for the first time in days. Now it is just a waiting game to see what damage was done to his brain while he was without oxygen. If you are on FaceBook, his parents and family members are posting updates on his progress, and thousands are sharing prayers and encouragement with his family. Praying for Jon Beckett Nelson


Shirley said...

There is something here called the 100 mile diet, in which people are encouraged to use produce and products raised or produced within 100 miles of where they live. It's popular here, mostly because we live in an agricultural area.
For the blogger pictures- I can't drag mine anymore so what I do is highlight the picture, click control and c, move my cursor to where I want the photo placed, and hit control and v (cut and paste) then I have to go back to the top and delete the copy of the photo I just moved. It is quick and easy.But annoying that we can't just drag it anymore.
I love your mountain photos, if you want to edit them a little, boost the contrast to make hem stand out a little.

ACountryCowgirl said...

Love all the pictures!! Especially the tetons, that is my favorite place ever!!! We lived in kelly wyoming and driggs idaho so we got to live on both sides of the mountains and miss them lots. You weren't very far from where I am from. I lived about 45 minutes s.e of portland and miss it also, but I never missed I-5 traffic for sure!!! Can't wait till you are out this way again, we will have to get together:)

Meagan said...

Great post! I lovea all the mountain pictures. Also thanks for sharing about Jon Beckett! Prayers are still needed... I'll send you an email update!

Yankee Girl ~ Missy said...

Thanks for the Beckett update I was wondering how things were going.

Your pictures were beautiful as always.

You're welcome. Hopefully a few people clicked the link and checked you out =)

Take care - hope you have a great week!!!

Farmgirl_dk: said...

Hey, we were within about 25 minutes of each other as you drove through Portland! Pretty, my city, don't you think? :-)
Dang, you guys do get around...it's crazy the miles you cover in just a couple days!
Glad you hit Portland when the sun was shining - it's a rarity these days! lol. Drive safely! -danni

Anonymous said...

Love the Tetons-only been there once but I will never forget how rugged and bold they are.