Sunday, August 02, 2015

Civil War Re enactments at Fort Stevens

I never knew there were so many worlds within worlds.  I met some historical actors.  I didn't know they did living history when I first me them.  I met them over cats.  They adopted a little Siamese girl from me and we've been friends ever since.  Only later did I learn of their hobby.

But I began meeting others who do the same thing.  I was surprised.  I had not known so many people enjoyed recreating different periods in history, as a hobby or even as a part time job.   Yesterday, I met more, in the field behind Fort Stevens state park, encamped as living history of the Civil War.

The Civil War was brutal, deadly and bloody.   It was a horrible event in our history but had to happen.   Remembering it is one thing so as not to repeat mistakes.  Billy the Kid was involved, when very young, in one of the brutal battles, where men's penises were cut off while they were still alive, things like that and hammers to the head dispatched captured wounded.  Did witness to that turn him into what he became?  Reliving it as a way of life or hobby, I couldn't do that.  I have a vivid imagination where I can sometimes feel what I imagine or remember.   So I try to keep the bad memories asleep, don't need more.  War can seem romantic at a distance and patriotic.  At a distance.


Ran into a deer up near one of the Fort Stevens guns

Also a ground squirrel with very fat stuffed cheeks!

Shadow of me.  Inside a battery building.
After I finally left the old fort area of the park, I went back down to the campground section, drove through on Peter Iredale road, but did not first go to the beach that contains the ribs of that shipwreck.  I went to the right back towards the jetty.  I did not turn in at the various beach access parking lots.  Like Area A or B.  I went past the jetty, which might be Area C, clear down to Area D.  I'd never been to Area D before.  It's on the Columbia side.

Cars and trucks out on the sand.  People fishing, from land and on the Columbia River, not far from its confluence with the Pacific Ocean.  Just around the corner in fact is the Pacific.  This is taken from Area D.  Area C is the south jetty, that sticks out into the Pacific at the mouth of the Columbia.

The Columbia River, taken from Area D.
I drove back from Area D to the turn out to the jetty parking lot.  From there you can climb up an observation tower, to look both directions, to the Pacific or back at the Columbia river or out to the jetty.  Or you can hike maybe a quarter mile out from the parking lot, along the jetty, to a beach, on the Columbia side of the jetty, which is what I did.  This is taken from the beach, on the north of the jetty, looking out into the ocean.

This looks at the ocean south of the jetty.  After walking out to the beach on the north side, I walked east from the tower near the parking lot along the jetty, until I could find an easy way across it to the beach south of it.  I waded in the surf and enjoyed myself before returning to my car the same way I'd come.  Lots of walking yesterday.

I took these of barnacles on the rocks with the close up button on the point and shoot camera I mostly use now.   I love the camera.  When my other one broke, someone in Texas sent it to me.    The barnacles look like teeth have sprouted and grown on the ocean exposed rocks.

After leaving the jetty area, I went to the Peter Iredale beach and collapsed on the sand, promptly falling asleep.  I woke in time to head back to Astoria, just a few minutes away, to pick up the cats.  Once there I realized I had about 45 minutes to spare and walked more along the river walk, which is amazing. The town was crammed with people enjoying themselves.

Peter Iredale shipwreck ribs and people on the beach there, at Fort Stevens state park near Astoria.

Astoria Trolley.  It runs up and down the river front.  By river, I mean, to those not from Oregon, the Columbia.
Time to pick up the cats finally.   Worn out too I was.

Echo went this time.

As did Echo's sister, Fantasia.

And Molly went also.
Today will be a day of sleep.  For the three of them, and for me.

Saturday, August 01, 2015

3 Cats Get Teeth Cleaning/Extractions in Glorious Day on Coast

I went to the north coast today.  Very early.  Too early.

I tried to go to bed super early to get the appropriate sleep.   But I don't do early to bed well.   Finally I read myself to sleep.   I counted backwards to numb my mind.

But the alarm rang at 3:15 a.m., disturbing some dream that it somehow fit into appropriately.

I took Fantasia, her sister, Echo and Molly, from the Clay street apartments.  Same place Slinko is from.  I was going to take Meesa, the girls mom, but she was onto me and avoided containment easily.

Guilt overwhelmed me the first five minutes of the drive, for scaring them by putting them in the car like that and driving off.  But I got over it.

By the time I crested the coast range, it was light and the huge blue moon was fading into the lightening sky.

But then came heavy fog, suddenly, so heavy I had to use windshield wipers.  Wow, that's something.  When, I think to myself, was the last time I turned those on?

I dropped the cats at the clinic and pondered the day and how to fill it til pick up time.  I went out through Warrenton, then Hammond.  I looked at the boats in the Warrenton harbor.  I badly wanted to go out on the Columbia, maybe even out in to the ocean.

Yes, I was dancing all day in the tsunami inundation zone without a prayer of escape, should the big one hit.  I made up stupid songs to sing to myself about "the big one" then laughed.  I had my tsunami escape route maps printed for the area and in the glove compartment.  That seemed good enough.

After that I went to the Hammond boat basin.  It was busy.  Hundreds of people were launching to go fishing for salmon at the confluence of the Pacific and Columbia, as the salmon start their spawning runs up the river.

You can camp there for a flat fee of $30.  That's steep.

Then I went to Fort Stevens state park, but this time, to the west end where the old gun batteries are.  The fort was built before the Civil War and was active through that conflict, through the Spanish American war, and both world wars.  I can't recall when it closed.  There were six batteries I think, with two guns each.  I could be wrong on that.  Most of the guns were sent over to the French, to help in their defense against Germany.  But a couple remain.

Most guard the mouth of the Columbia, but one battery guards the Pacific.

Or did.

One big gun

The Lookout

With the distant Columbia River

I took this from the command post up on the hill.  I walked all over that compound.

You could go inside a couple of the old underground concrete battery buildings.   This one was lit, the other one I went in wasn't.  A little creepy!

Gun range

Pay per view up in the command center overlooking everything and seemed plenty high enough to me, to be tsunami proof.  I would have bet on it!   I only paid out a quarter to have a good look at the far shore of the Columbia.  I could also clearly see what fishermen were wearing in their boats through this contraption.  Suddenly, when my time ran out, the things' eyelids noisily snapped closed.

Well, tomorrow I'll post again with other things I saw today.  Echo and Molly each had 6 teeth pulled.  Fantasia had 3 pulled.  All three girls got their vaccines updated, flea treatment, droncit for tapeworms, nails trimmed and ears cleaned.

Thank you so much to all who donated so the girls could get this done!