Almost exactly four years ago, I showed you my then-new morning walk along Casco Bay in Portland, Maine.
Now, five weeks after having moved into my new home near Portland, Oregon, I have another new morning walk, this one in a city park next to the neighborhood where I live in Lake Oswego.
When I walk, in the early morning between about 6AM and 7AM, hardly anyone else it out and I have long stretches like this to myself.
That pink flowering tree on the right is at its peak now, maybe a couple of more weeks before all the blossoms are gone.
In another section of my walk are a lot of what might be blueberry bushes. But I remember blueberries that grew at the country house I once had in upstate New York as dangling on longer stems than the ones in the this photo and having quite different leaves. Maybe these are Oregon-style blueberries or, maybe, they are just berries of some kind that happen to be blue.
When I was a kid growing up here, there were lots of drinking fountains in downtown Portland. Unless I am misremembering, there appear not to be so many now, but this one, along a park path is similar in style, set among a couple of slabs of rock for walkers to rest if they need or want.
At the beginning of my walk is a gathering area with an an amphitheater (I'll be attending a free R&B concert there tomorrow evening) and a large lawn. At the top of the area is a picnic pavilion and this being Oregon - famed for the amount of its rain - of course, the pavilion is covered.
On the other side of the covered pavilion are tables and chairs for dryer days along a shallow reflecting pool.
Nearby is a sort of tent over a jetty that is built out into the river. I'm sure there is name for this shape and I'm sure there is something mathematical to be said about it too, but that's not my area of expertise; I just think it's interesting to look at.
The river is the Willamette – the one that a little farther north divides the city of Portland east and west and eventually flows into the mighty Columbia River. This is the Sellwood Bridge I can see on my walk, the southernmost of Portland's many bridges.
There is remarkable number of plaques, rocks and stelae in the park that are commemorative or inspirational. In one end are these pillars that remind me of a small Stonehenge although the arrangement is wrong and there are not cross pieces at the top of the pillars. Here they are in the early morning sunlight with the Sellwood Bridge in the background.
Each of the stelae contains a quotation from someone whose name I don't remember. If you're interested, I'll write it down next time. Here are a couple of them:
There are more, but you get the idea.
One morning, not much after dawn, I came across these rowers practicing on the river. The guy in the motorboat on the left set the pace - “Pull. Pull. Pull” - while matching their speed. (Sometime I'll tell you about the Portland dragon boat races.)
Because I walk so early, most of the wildlife isn't awake yet, but yesterday I had a nice little nostalgia trip when I saw these ducks on the river. Not more than a mile from here, when I was a little girl, my mother would take me down to the lake (not this river) to feed the ducks there that looked just like these.
At The Elder Storytelling Place today, Madonna Dries Christensen: Antique Trunk Holds Family History