Monday, October 12, 2009


I apologise. I had promised an exciting New Zealand Photo Update every day last week, but things got out of hand last week and there wasn't even time to blink and not think you were wasting precious time. There may be more time this week, but I very much doubt it... so please, be patient, there are hundreds more pictures to follow!

Where am I now? Portland, OR of course. Did you think my job would allow me to stay home for more than just a few days! Don't be silly!

I did get to work hard in the garden all day saturday and make some more tasty cinnamon raison English Muffins. My major gardening job was to turn over last years leaves and that took the best part of the day. I have sowed some fall greens and am getting ready to till up the rest of the vegetable patch for lots and lots of spinach!

Sunday we left the house at 6am. ugh. Just 5 miles from the turn off to Danny's parents house, where we were going to drop off the dogs, the engine thermometer pinged into the red and all these warning lights came on in the car. oh dear. Thankfully, we have had this problem before and so whilst we were nervous, we were not panicking! Because we have hardly been here, we have not had time to change the oil in our car and those things all happen basically to force you into changing the oil. We made it to the turn off but didnt want to drive the extra 15 minutes to their house; so we left the car parked at the gas station and they came to collect us. Brenda took the dogs home (sorry for getting you up before 7am sunday morning Brenda!) and Paul, Danny and I squeezed into Amanda's little truck and he sped us off to the airport with my legs up on the dash so he could change gears! I was set for a 6 hour lay-over in Vegas of all places, because the flight was sold out. But thankfully I was the first stand-by passenger so I got on to the same flight as Danny; even got to sit next to him!

What am I doing this week? Our newest project is on the N. Touttle River that drains the crater on Mount St. Helens. The Corps has some dams lower down and are concerned with siltation processes filling up the dams so we are considering erosion rates of the materials in the river floodplain. The work week has not begun according to plan. We shipped three packages overnight for saturday delivery through FedEx. We cannot work without these boxes and every day is planned to a T. Of course, only one of the boxes arrived, and of course, the less essential one. So the others have gone off up the mountain and I am sitting here at the hotel waiting for FedEx to get its act together and deliver my packages. Fun fun fun! How did FedEx manage to get so big when they are so unbelievably unreliable?!

Going to be sunny and comfortable in temperature today, but its supposed to rain for the entire rest of the trip, great way to take your first ever helicopter ride that you are totally worried about!

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