Saturday, February 22, 2020

Ruby Finds The Mountain Wearing A Pink Hat While I Commiserate

Incoming text message with a photo, last night.

Text in message..."The Mountain is wearing a pink hat tonight."

Since this text message was coming from Washington I knew the Mountain being referred to was Mount Rainier, since such is what Mount Rainier is referred in Washington, as simply the Mountain.

Even though there are four other volcano mountains in Washington, Rainier is the only one which can pretty much be seen from any location in the state, hence Mount Rainier representing Washington on the state license plate.

When I looked at the photo on my phone I could not make out the Mountain, or the pink hat it was alleged to be wearing.

But, I could see my one and only niece, Ruby, on Harstine Island, standing on the shore of Puget Sound, but I could see no Mountain

I have had this problem with previous photos sent from Harstine Island.

Previously, even after taking the photo off the phone, in order to view it via the big screen monitor, I still could not see the Mountain.

But, due to learning my lesson from those previous instances I knew I was only looking at the i-Phone photo at 27% size. Increasing the photo to 100%, suddenly the Mountain appears.

I then cropped out the part of the photo which clearly shows the Mountain wearing a pink hat, for your viewing pleasure below...

I have seen Mount Rainier wearing weirder things than this pink hat.

Mount Rainier has a long history of hosting weird things, like crystal gazing gurus, and UFOs, among other things, like strange cloud formations.

Just yesterday I was in ALDI, in Wichita Falls, which is in Texas, where there are no volcanoes, or any real mountain ranges, and the subject of Mount Rainier came up when I was checking out and the ALDI checkout lady, with whom I had previously conversed multiple times, asked me when I'm going to Arizona again, since mention had been made over the years of my frequent Arizona visits.

I replied that my next scheduled escape from Texas was going to Washington next summer.

Which Washington she asked.

The one with natural volcanoes I replied.

She then surprised me saying first that she had not traveled all that much, had hardly ever been out of flat Texas, but a couple months prior had flown northwest, to Washington, to visit friends in Seattle, who had a cabin at Packwood.

Packwood, by Mount Rainier I asked?

Yes, was the reply. She told me she had seen pictures of such places but being there in person was mesmerizing, that it was so peaceful, the scenery so beautiful.

I replied something along the line of that is true, it is scenic, but that you don't really fully appreciate it when you grow up living there, but I do now, when I return.

The ALDI lady then said something along the line of she would not mind moving to Washington.

To which I replied I like visiting, but I really can't picture moving back.

And then that same day I called to my Arizona sister, who when I called was at Sea-Tac waiting to board to return to Arizona after a multi-week visit to Washington for the first time in several years.

I don't remember how the subject got brought up, but I asked about either the mountains or the Mountain, to which my sister replied she saw no mountains during the visit, other than driving the pass over the Cascades, on the way to visit the Tacoma Trio, and others, after first spending a week in Eastern Washington visiting her in-laws.

Apparently Western Washington was in pretty much 100% cloud cover mode during my sister's entire visit.

I asked how well she adjusted to the temperature difference after so long not experiencing it, let alone experiencing it in Winter. To which my sister replied that she really could not see moving back and adjusting to the cloudy rainy days after getting used to the reliable sunshine of Arizona.

Ironically, the day after my sister returned to Arizona I read in the Seattle Times that Western Washington, the previous day, had had it first mostly clear day since way back in November.

I really am sort of conflicted about the idea of moving back to my old home zone.

There are so many things I would so greatly appreciate now. Like the scenery. How close one is to so many different things. Few miles to the west, saltwater, few miles to the east, mountains. Seafood. Digging clams, catching dungeness crab. Blackberries, free for the picking. All sorts of easily acquired produce.

Drive over the mountains to a more desert, Texas-like climate, both weather-wise, and political-wise. Where apples, peaches, apricots, grapes, nectarines and all sorts of other stuff I am forgetting, grow, cheap and easy to acquire. And of high quality.

Or drive a few miles north and cross the border to another country, a progressive liberal country successfully demonstrating, for poorly educated ignorant sorts, way south of the border, how democratic socialism actually works.

I miss going regularly to Canada. I think my last time north of the border was shortly before moving to Texas, nephew Jason took me there to ride the Skytrain from Burnaby, I think it was Burnaby, to Vancouver, and then the Seabus across the bay to West Vancouver.

Next summer I will be a couple miles from the border with Canada. I suspect I will not be crossing over....

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