Tuesday, September 30, 2008


When you're on your way into the Walla Walla Valley from the east, this is what greets you as you start the decent. It's a scenic overlook that offers a fabulous view of the valley. The view is not always as attractive as this; sometimes, especially during the middle of a hot summer day, it is downright ugly. But this evening is fantastic...amazing...gorgeous...wonderful. I absolutely love it. Tomorrow I will post something that caught my eye here when I wasn't looking at the view.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Just the Beginning

The trees are starting to show the season around here. I'm excited, since autumn is my favourite time of year (after Christmas, but that's not one of the four seasons). I love the colours, I love the cool mornings and evenings, and I love not having to sleep with a fan on. I also love being able to drink tea without overheating, and I love browsing through the long-sleeve section of my wardrobe - it's almost like having a bunch of new clothes to wear all of a sudden! This is a photo of the Congregrational Church in Walla Walla. It's a quiet Sunday morning, and the sacred building stands watch over the empty street, awaiting its weekly visitors and friends.

Friday, September 26, 2008

A Work of Art

As soon as I saw this I had to go investigate. With my camera, of course. It seems the Alumni Association of Walla Walla U. have decided to upgrade the three guest rooms they have on the campus. These guest rooms haven't been updated since the early 80s, so you can probably imagine what they looked like. Now they are modern and classy, according to Marcie, the university student who designed the new rooms and managed the project over the summer. Now the rooms are done and ready to be used...but there is one final touch Marcie wants: Art. This woman in the photo is putting together a couple of pieces of art for the walls of the guest rooms. The colours represented on the canvas are the colours guests in the new, modern rooms will enjoy. (She added a bit of black later.)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Stepping Back in Time

I don't know what kind of car this is, because I'm not a car buff, nor am I a history buff, but I thought it was so cool! My great-uncle had a Ford Model A when I was a young girl, and when we'd visit him on his acreage in Michigan during the summer, he'd take us for rides and let me honk the horn: Aaahh-OOOOO-guh! It was black and looked quite different from this car, which I woudl guess is a bit newer than a Model A. Anyone know what this is? I spotted this when I went to get my hair cut at a great place called Above and Beyond, which is located above a local deli named Merchant's. Though Merchant's faces Main Street, you get to Above and Beyond by parking behind the buildings and climbing the back stairs. There may be a front entrance, but I haven't discovered it yet!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


The two large trees on either side of the entrance to this small cemetery look like guards to me. Not keeping people out, but rather out of respect for those whose remains lie within the gates. It's like a stern welcoming crew - or those guards at Buckingham Palace that never smile but everyone enjoys seeing them at their posts. They just fit there. It's where they're supposed to be, and they do their job well. This cemetery is located on the grounds of Fort Walla Walla. There are lots of cool things on this land, and I'll get around to showing you more of them as time goes on.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Another Onion

This is another local-artist-decorated onion in downtown Walla Walla. I can't remember the cross-street, but this is on Main Street, toward the West end of the street. This is probably one of the most colourful onions I've seen so far, but they're all unique, and the project is just really cool. I hope to eventually post them all for you to enjoy.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

New England Vacation #12

No, this isn't Oxford. But you're close. It's actually a walkway at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut. Both Harvard and Yale modeled much of their early architecture after edifices found on the campuses of Oxford and Cambridge Universities in England. (The old one, that is.) Though I haven't been to Cambridge, these campuses did remind me of my two visits to Oxford, once in 2003, and again in 2006. It will never change, that almost sacred feel of the stonework and gothic-style architecture. Yale is similar, but the culture is completely different. New Haven has a feel of a large city. It's close to New York City, and you can tell. Oxford, on the other hand, has a feel of...well, academia. It's quiet, thoughtful, and almost holy. There's an air of intellect in Oxford. There's an air of cigarette smoke in New Haven. It's sad, but true. However, in spite of my preference for prestigious British schools over American ones, I did enjoy my visit to Yale University. This walkway was actually gated, and we were not allowed through without an ID card to swipe through the lock (like hotels in America have now). We could have slipped through behind a student who went through whilest (sorry, couldn't help it) we were there, but decided that probably would not be a good idea! Looks peaceful, though, doesn't it. Behind me as I took the photo were construction noises, traffic noises, and sirens wailing down the streets. Far from peaceful, I have to say.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

New England Vacation #11

Call me cruel, but I couldn't help but laugh at this bald headed, bare-butted penguin at the Boston Aquarium. He looks so happy to be with his friend, and his friend didn't seem to mind the pink skin showing through, so I did feel bad laughing at this oddity. But you can't tell me it didn't make you smile. Well, perhaps you can. You could be more compassionate than I. At any rate, here it is: A penguin at the Boston Aquarium. It was feeding time when we were there, and the girls were in the tank in their drysuits and feeding charts, handing the birds their daily allotment of fish, which were subsequently gulped down in less than a second.

Friday, September 19, 2008

New England Vacation #10

Out of all of the paths and sidewalks and walkways through and across the Harvard University campus, and between all of the 300-year-old and modern buildings, someone took the time to select this spot to remember childhood. I could have so easily missed this. I could have been talking animatedly to the person to my left, or perhaps selected a different path to the road I was looking for. But no. I glanced to my right and there it was: a perfect homage to Winnie the Pooh. I couldn't resist taking this photo, and I sure hope that you all enjoy it as much as I did. What a joyful find!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

New England Vacation #9

This is most likely a no-brainer for any baseball fan. This is, indeed, one of the icons of Boston: Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox. On the left-hand side of the photo you can see the famous Green Monster - the wall built to prevent balls from causing damage on the street outside the stadium and to keep onlookers from getting a free view of the game. In the background, above and behind the Green Monster, you can see Boston's famous Citgo sign that is illuminated quite brightly after dark. There is no game taking place in this photo; we were on a ballpark tour, and the individuals on the field are preparing it for the evening's game vs. the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. This tour was fantastic, and I definitely recommend it for anyone in the Boston area.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

New England Vacation #8

This is a fun photo I got the opportunity to snap while we were wandering through The Boston Common. The Boston Common is the oldest public area in the United States. It's a large park with two ponds, hundreds of benches, even more trees, lots of grass, and several statues and memorials. It also offers a view of the Massachusetts capitol building. Both the capitol building and the Boston Common are part of the famous Freedom Trail winding through Boston. These ducks are one of the many statues in this area, and were inspired by the book, "Make Way for Ducks," based on the ponds and ducks of the Boston Common. This little boy was trying out each duck, trying to decide which one he liked to ride best. I couldn't resist this shot!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

New England Vacation #7

The tower you see in this photo is one of at least four that make up Boston's Holocaust Memorial. On the glass, all the way up, are the numbers tattooed on the arms of those killed in the Holocaust. The print is quite small, and they are on all four towers of the memorial. Printed on the glass at eye-level on two sides of the inner part of the tower are quotes from Holocaust survivors. This was a very somber experience for me. One of my intense interests is WWII and specifically, the Holocaust. The memorial walk ended with a large stone bearing the following quote:

They came for the Communists,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Communist.

Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew.

Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade unionist.

Then they came for the Catholics,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Catholic.

Then they came for me,
and by that time no one was left to speak up.

Monday, September 15, 2008

New England Vacation #6

Today we move south in New England to Boston, Massachusetts. This was taken in Chinatown, where men constantly gather to play Chinese Chess on boards drawn on cardboard. Just to the right of the photo is a human-size Chinese Chess board painted on the sidewalk. In the warmer months there are human-size pieces you can play chess with. These men were very much into their game, as are the men behind them, as you can kind of see. There are also plenty of other men who aren't playing, but are willing to offer their wise (or not so wise?) advice on moves and strategies.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

New England Vacation #5

Today we'll move from outdoors and natural beauty, to interesting things found within the cities of New England. We're still in Maine with today's photo. Can anyone guess where this was taken?

Okay, let me know if you guessed correctly: This is inside Maine's capitol building in Augusta, and is a view of the Senate room. It was a fantastic room with great views out the floor-to-ceiling windows. Each seat had its own drawers, portable telephone, microphone, and binder/book storage area. They even had name tags! The entire building was quiet, as neither the senate nor the House of Representatives were in session. Occasionally we'd hear someone calling out to a colleague or the echo of footsteps on the marble floors, but it was really almost silent most of the time. We whispered together, my husband and I, and it felt almost reverent being in this beautiful, silent room.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

New England Vacation #4

Well, we've seen New England ocean and lake - today we'll take a look at a river! This is the Sunday River in Newry, Maine, and crossing it, as the subject of the photo, is a covered bridge. I'm not sure of its name, or when it was built, but you can no longer drive over it. You can, however, get out and walk around on it and enjoy the beautiful forest and river views surrounding it. This is the first covered bridge I've ever seen, and I was thrilled to be able to find it using a book that had let us down at least twice already on this trip. We found this on a driving tour of western Maine that we took, which ended us up at the ocean views you saw the last two days. This place was very peaceful - not many cars went by on this very back-road state route. I enjoyed the reprieve very much.

Friday, September 12, 2008

New England Vacation #3

Staying on the water theme...and actually, the ocean and Atlantic themes, as well, today's photo features my handsome hubby enjoying the view from near Two Lights State Park in Maine. There is a lighthouse to his left and up on a hill, and a sea vessel warning horn behind the camera. It sounds two medium-length tones at regular intervals out across the water. I'm sure it can be heard for miles. The sea gulls here are large and somewhat different from our West coast gulls. And there were a lot of them! I didn't disturb them too much, but I did encroach a bit on their roost. The sandpipers and plovers scattered as I approached, but the gulls eyed me wearily from a distance. The "rocks" you're seeing are actually large pieces of petrified wood. I couldn't believe it...it was so solid! It's also quite beautiful, if you ask me.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

New England Vacation #2

This is Portland Head Lighthouse in Portland, Maine. It was exciting to see this, as it is quite famous. The weird thing to us was that the sun was setting on the wrong side! We're from the West coast, where the sun sinks into the ocean. Here, the sun rises out of the water, and sets behind the city. It was a little odd! We haven't spent much time at the Atlantic Ocean. Raised on the western side of the States, both my husband and I have seen many more California and Oregon Coast beaches than anything else.

In 2003, I flew to London, England, to attend school for 3 months. That gave me my first glimpse of the Atlantic Ocean. In 2006, my hubby and I got the opportunity to travel to Florida with our steel drum band, giving us the chance to walk along an Atlantic beach. Then, in the fall of 2006, my husband and I took a 2-week vacation to Great Britain, and we flew over the entire Atlantic Ocean. And finally, in the spring of 2007, our steel drum band went touring again, this time to Bermuda, which is situated in the Atlantic Ocean. This means we have now sufficiently experienced the Atlantic. The Portland Head, however, was our first Atlantic coast lighthouse. Beautiful, isn't it?

Before I close, I do have to ask that you take a moment today to remember those lost in the incidents of 9/11 - now seven years behind us, but forever etched in our country's memory.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

New England Vacation #1

I apologize to all of you die-hard CDP fans, but I have to do this. I don't have access to any Walla Walla Valley photos until next week, and I can't stand not posting for an entire week. So I'm going to be posting photos from my trip to New England with my husband. This is our 2008 vacation and we're touring the Northeastern United States, otherwise known as New England. So if that bothers you, I'm sorry...but I hope you enjoy the photos anyway!

This photo is of a grey and drizzly day in Burlington, Vermont, taken at Lake Champlain. It was a lovely evening, in spite of the occasional spit from the sky. We enjoyed the peaceful walk along this amazingly large lake. Though it doesn't hold a candle to Michigan's Great Lakes (which look like seas even from the air!), it is still a very large lake.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Dollhouses 3

Once, while walking through this neighbourhood, I found the metal door to this clock tower open. Glancing around, I walked up to it to see if I could get in the wooden door, too. Disappointingly, it was locked. Bummer. I might have had quite a shot of the neighbourhood from inside this tower! Behind this shot is Myra Road, the one being extended to connect both highways. On the other side of it is Fort Walla Walla, of which I will show you some photos soon. To the right of this shot is a small subdivision called Hawk Hill, which contains some of the largest homes in the area. They are ridiculously large, but they have lots of windows to enjoy the beautiful views I'm sure they have. This photo is of the first roundabout in this neighbourhood. The second goes around the gazebo I showed you yesterday.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Dollhouses 2

There are two roundabouts in this Doll-house Place. One of them goes around a clock tower (which I will show you tomorrow), and the other goes around this attractive gazebo. I have never once seen this gazebo being used for anything, but it sure is nice to look at! In this shot you can also get a brief glimpse of the style of the houses in this neighbourhood. I'll get you some better shots soon. Hopefully you'll agree that they look like doll houses, so you don't think I'm crazy!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Dollhouses 1

Narrow, quiet streets wind their way through this little neighbourhood. Built just a few years ago (2004-ish?), this charming residential area is one of my favourite places to walk in College Place. The houses are extremely close together, making me claustrophobic just to look at them, but that just means I'll never live here. I still enjoy walking here. I call this neighbourhood the Doll-house Place. When you see a picture of some of the houses, you'll understand why! The landscaping of this neighourhood was done quite tastefully. I love the trees lining the street here, and the miniature stop sign you can see at the distant corner.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Public Transit

We may not be a large city, but we're working toward being greener. One way of doing this is to provide public transit systems to encourage people to leave their cars at home. Unfortunately this system doesn't reach out to where I live, so it's impractical for husband and I to utilize this service. I have noticed, however, that many people can and do. One of the most popular stops is Wal-Mart, a little over a mile from the intersection where this shot was taken.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Lots of Orange

These days, you see a lot of this when you're traveling between College Place and Walla Walla. Just to the right of this shot is the Blue Mountain Mall, which is being completely redone. All but the anchor stores were torn out, and new buildings are replacing them. The mall has been a flop since long before I moved here in 2001. Stores would open and close before their grand opening was over. You'd walk through the mall and maybe run into 3 people - most of them over 70 and power-walking. You could pass 10 empty stores between open ones. It was pathetic. Poor management and lack of interest from the owners, from what I hear, are the causes. But now some new billionaire in California has purchased the mall and is making drastic changes. Let's hope this improves things! Also, the road crossing this one is being extended several miles. It is going to be the main connection between Route 125/Highway 11 that goes between College Place and Milton-Freewater, and Highway 12, which takes you from Walla Walla/College Place to Tri-Cities and beyond. This calls for a massive revamp of the road system around here. An entire bank was picked up and moved. Intersections are being widened and redirected. It's an absolute mess...and it results in lots of orange. At least the roads now coordinate with Home Depot!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Looking Up

This is another in the Walla Walla Onion Art series. I'm not sure of the name of the artist of this one, but the design is unique. It almost resembles graffiti in style, which is cool. This onion sits on Land Title Plaza on Main Street. The railing you see in the background keeps you from tumbling 20 feet down into the river that flows through town. Mostly it flows underground, but occasionally you'll see it as you cross certain streets throughout downtown. At the beginning of the summer, it rages rapidly through its tunnel below, but this time of year it is quieter and not nearly as high or fast-running. Just to the left of this brick area is a wine tasting patio, which I find beautiful. I'll post a photo of it sometime. This plaza has live music performed by local musicians every weekend during the summer.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008


I chose the name of this posting in honour of a new friend of mine, Kevin. I've never actually met the Korean gentleman, but he is in the process of walking across America, learning about religion, faith, and beliefs. He started on the Washington Coast and is making his way to the East Coast where he lives now. He's had some fascinating interactions already, and it's been fun to watch his progress on his blog. He signs all of his emails, "Pax," and as that describes this scene perfectly, it is today's post's title. This idyllic scene was taken in front of the house belonging to a friend of mine. It's lovely to sit on their front deck and listen to the water flowing by. Just downstream is where this branch of the Little Walla Walla River splits into 3 irrigation streams, and before each of the three streams is a little drop from the water gate, so it's like having a waterfall outside your house. Very neat! I'm a sucker for water features, and this one is no exception! What makes is ten times better is that it's natural!

Monday, September 1, 2008


This photo may not be high quality, but I absolutely love the layers it has. First, there is the reflection of the cars on Main Street outside, and the buildings across the street. Then, there is the window itself, belonging to Bright's Candies, a century-old candy shop in downtown Walla Walla. Then there's what's inside: People shopping at the candy counter, the popcorn machine, and bags of caramel corn just inside the window. You may have to click to enlarge the photo before you can see it all. Bright's is a really fun place to go. Even if you don't want to eat anything (which I guarantee will not be the case once you get inside), it's fun to look at all the shapes of chocolate they have - and you can even watch the candy-maker at work behind a window! I've seen volleyball-sized orbs of chocolate shaped like a basketball in this shop. They also have vehicles, animals, fruits, and practically any other shape you can imagine. They make truffles, taffies, and chocolate-drizzled caramel corn. They even serve ice cream and chocolate sodas! If you have a sweet tooth, this is the place for you!