Monday, October 13, 2008

What a day!

Yesterday was a sweet day. I felt relatively good, except for episodes of nausea and the usual stuff, but I've grown well-used to trying to ignore those and hope, in ways, they will pass away. The nausea, which often comes when I'm in the CTO and in a car or moving vehicle (plane or boat), often is settled with a granola bar or cookie which I try to remember to keep on hand.
I also learned from my sister that gum can help, though it is hard to chew when one's chin is shoved up hard against the part on the brace designed to do just that. But I do try gum at times, too.

I think the nausea happens because I don't have that flex and give at the neck while wearing the brace. So, the horizon looks floaty, plus looking through bifocals which are usually at the wrong level for where my chin is being held. In the car, I could use a 3-point harness, I suspect. I can't fight gravity around corners with my upper body because of being held competely stiff "up top."

At any rate, it all combines to cause me to feel nauseous and a cookie will usually help. Which accounts for why I can't lose any weight, but that's a different story.

Speaking of harness, I've begun to think of my CTO vest as a draft horse harness. As if I need to put it on before going to work. This reasoning helps. For years, I worked with drafts, and slung heavy leather and steel harness parts up over their backs almost every day. If they could stand for it, I guess I can. Besides, it might just be karma.

We drove down the Gorge using back roads which allowed us glimpses of fishermen on the "wild and scenic" river and hunters standing around campfires, clad in orange vests and caps and tales of missed shots.

By the time we stopped for lunch in a mountain community, I was pretty woozy. But lunch did the trick and I popped a pain med and started for the first time in the day to feel like "this was a fun thing." Next, we visited a small antique shop, one we'd visited before a few times.

Wind River Trading Post, I have to hand it to you for being the best antique store ever. Your 2 medium-sized and unassuming rooms (the sign on your door reads you've been in business there over 25 years) are clean and dusted, items are priced and I've never seen such organization! Hawaiian items such as an old Don Ho album, paintings with palms and pretty hula girls, beaded leiis, all are displayed in their corner, while down the aisle are all the cowboy items, then well-marked and lovingly-cleaned are shelves of tools: wrenches and apple corers; Model T wrenches; hand drills; horseshoer hammers and old cans of grease and multi-oil.

Only a good, old western jacket or two hang in this place, no junkie clothes or paperback books to take up the space where "good stuff" could be displayed.

I watched a couple of deer hunters go through quickly and pick out several dainty-looking dishes and lamps, gifts for the wife left at home, no doubt. Rusty thermometers which hung once on back porches now lie on shelves with $1 price tags and announce that it's a chilly 50 degrees in the store. But, over by the blazing pellet stove, it's not too bad and a well-worn leather chair faces the flames with piles of old magazines on the floor beside it.

I can well picture the old man who owns and runs this place to spend long winter days comfortably ensconced next to the stove, head nodding once in a while as he pores over tattered LIFE magazines or meticulously organizes vintage post cards and family photos into tabbed albums.

We liked him so much, we both decided separately to spend $5 on something whether we wanted it or not. I found a "what looks to be old" rusted cricket (like the bug) toy for $6. My husband liked a piggy bank he found for $6. A lamp with a moose on the base for $10 (we only had $9.75 in our possession by the time we bought that and the kindly proprietor said that was good enough). Our total added up to over $30!

Happily, we drove home along the banks of the Columbia, strong winds causing ocean-like whitecaps and inviting a myriad of windsurfers to enjoy the Sunday. Taking another back road home, we were treated to the sight of 5 wild turkeys by the side of the road. Once home, we unveiled our treasures, which had been purposely wrapped in local newspaper by the knotted hands of the old guy at the antique store. Oh, by the way, my husband mentioned that in talking with the gent, he learned that he is 3 years younger than my husband!

A lovely Sunday. We had spent $30 on a lunch at a local's place, the food was great, the atmosphere the best as a table-full of Yakima Indian girls chattered away loudly from their chairs near the wood stove and hunters stopped for a cheeseburger before heading back out into the chilly woods.

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