Friday, February 27, 2009

Skywatch Friday

A just-before-spring sunset in the Walla Walla Valley makes everything smile. Starting with me, and hopefully not ending with you. Spring is on its way!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

A Quick Shot

As we were driving down the road I saw a heron take off from a nearby pond. I grabbed my camera (which happened to be in my lap), turned it on, and my husband slowed down so we could try and capture its elegance. My camera is just a point-and-shoot, basically, so the zoom isn't as tight as fancy cameras that cost thousands of dollars. But I think this is my first shot of a bird in flight where you can actually tell what it is! These birds reside all over the WWV, since our land is quite marshy in some places, making for good feeding for the blue herons.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

A Local Icon

No, the city isn't on fire. And no, that's not the moon. That is in fact the sun, rising over the WWV on a foggy day. The icon referred to in the title is the College Place water tower; on one side it says "College Place" in bold black letters. It's a landmark - a local icon - and was once the tallest structure in College Place. (Until the 7-story women's dorm at WW University was built in the 70s). I know this would have made a great Skywatch Friday shot, but I couldn't wait until Friday! I love the sun and sky in this photo. I'm impatient, what can I say?

Saturday, February 7, 2009

A Rainy Day on Main Street

On a grey and dreary day we take a little drive down Main Street. This is the main intersection of Main Street in Walla Walla. On Thursday, someone mentioned in the comments the die Brücke building. Here you see it on the right-hand side of the street. Just across from it, directly to the right of the car, is our downtown Starbucks - the best place to sit and people watch in the valley! The die Brücke building hosts the Book & Game Company, a wonderful little shoppe that guessed it: books and games. It's a fantastic store I spend hours in most times I go there. And it's hard to leave without another promising book or exciting game. Down just past the B&G Co. you can see the old theatre, which is now a Macy's (discussed in Thursday's blog). Welcome to Walla Walla!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Cordiner Hall

I want to get more pictures of this campus on this blog, but for some reason I haven't done it yet. This is the building I am most familiar with on the Whitman College campus: Cordiner Hall. It is their performing arts building, and I have attended performances as well as performing in them myself on several occasions. It's a beautiful building, and the only one of its caliber in the valley. The Walla Walla Symphony performs here each season, directed by Yaacov Baergmann, half-brother to Itzhak Pearlman, the world-famous violinist. The Walla Walla Symphony is the longest continuous running symphony west of the Mississippi River, having celebrated over 100 years of performing a few years back. The Whitman College campus is beautiful - by far the most beautiful university/college campus in the valley (there are three colleges/universities here). I will show more of their campus soon, I promise...and tell you more about the prestigious college itself.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

The Old Theatre

Today's post comes to us from downtown Walla Walla. This is one of the entrances to our Macy's department store, which used to be known as the Bon Marche'. The name changed a couple of years ago across the country. Macy's sells everything from clothing to kitchen gadgets to china to sheets to makeup to accessories to shoes to towels to crystal. They also have a gift-wrapping department where, for a cost, of course, they will gift-wrap your item in a size-appropriate box with beautiful paper of your choosing. This entrance to Macy's opens into the junior section (for teenagers), where the room is curved and the path into the room sloped. The reason for this? The building used to be a theatre back in the day. Long before me, I'm sorry to say. Ever since I've lived here, this has been a Bon Marche'/Macy's. I'm not sure when it became part of a department store, but it's still a beautiful old building and I hope they continue to provide upkeep for the facade.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Tour of the Back Roads 8

Here, our last stop on our first tour of the WWV back roads, we see a field weed coated in ice, preserved until the sun warms the ground enough to fight back. And thus ends this tour of the back roads, though I do hope to go on another one, perhaps in the spring when there is more colour in the valley. I hope you'll join us for that tour, as well. You probably won't need your mittens for that one.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Tour of the Back Roads 7

Earlier on our tour of the back roads of the WWV, we encountered this field, covered in ice and snow, lined with icicle-laden trees. Yesterday we took a closer look at the trees themselves; today we're scanning the field and noticing each sparkle of ice-covered grass and stump of cut hay. You can see a few sparkles in this photo. Tomorrow we'll get up close and personal with the ground and see what makes the field sparkle like glass. Then we'll call it good for this particular tour of the back roads...until next time!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Tour of the Back Roads 6

Continuing our tour of the back roads of the WWV, we stopped yesterday to take a look at a frozen treeline along the edge of a frozen field. Today we're stepping a tad closer to see exactly how much ice there is. A lot! The sprinklers covered the trees for a while, coating them in beautiful, sparkling icicles. My fellow back roads travelers and I each plucked an icicle and, aside from freezing our glove-less fingers, we got a refreshing "drink." Our tour of the WWV back roads continues tomorrow, so please join us!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Tour of the Back Roads 5

It recently snowed a bit in the valley. Just a little bit, with the deepest spots boasting approximately 2 1/2-3 inches. But it was enough to freeze the valley, causing residents to drag out the gloves and hats again. Many fields pepper the valley; in the spring it's colourful and fresh, but in the winter, everything is brown...unless it snows, and then everything is white! For some reason, occasionally farmers (or the farm hands?) will allow the sprinklers to run even in the dead of winter. I'm not sure why, because it seems bad for the pipes to be pumping water through in freezing weather. The sprinkler heads coat with ice and then can't move. Whatever the reason, it happens, and when it does, it actually creates a beautiful sparkling field of ice. Such as the one pictured above. They are trees lining a field on the back roads, and they are completely covered in ice. Tomorrow we'll take a closer look and see what else this fantastic mistake has created.