Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Saying adios to Riverbend Resort on Peoria Road

July 18-25, Harrisburg, Oregon

Detering Orchard,  Harrisburg, Oregon--photo collage from their internet site
Staying one month at a campground always seems like such a long time when you first arrive and then suddenly the calendar days fly away and it is time to move on. We actually would be staying until July 29 but there is a Country Coach rally happening here starting on the 25th and every site in the park was booked months in advance. In fact, as I sit here at the computer we are already completely surrounded by several luxurious coaches including a few 45’ Country Coach Prevost conversions—million dollar babies.  Behind us sits our blogger friends from Texas, John and Sharon (of Heyduke fame); together in our 36-37’ Tiffins we feel dwarfed by the shiny chrome-plated tag axles lining the rows.

country coach prevostriverbend rally

John and Sharon’s arrival here last Wednesday came at a perfect time as we have been winding down on our trips to Corvallis to visit with friends and complete our annual medical appointments. As much as we have enjoyed seeing old friends again, it has also been great to spend time with folks who share the same lifestyle as us. We have much in common as neither of us had any RV experience when we decided to become full-timers. They have an edge on us with six months more experience so we appreciate the sharing of their road-tested wisdom. One big plus for me that just happened in this regard is that I am using Windows Live Writer for the first time for this blog—what a difference!  I had heard that most experienced bloggers migrate to this program, but I wasn’t sure how to transfer everything. Thanks to John’s help, it was easy to link Live Writer to my blogger site. I have been especially frustrated with inserting photos and changing the layout, so hopefully my blog appearance will improve as a result.

Summer in the valley is notably a time for festivals. I happened to hear that the Bite of EugennakedAlmondFudgee was going on Friday night and that a Cajun band, Etouffee, was playing from 5-7 p.m. So, off we went with John and Sharon to Alton Baker Park to check it out. I was surprised how wimpy the event was with only about a dozen vendors and only half the band showing up for the performance. With all the amazing restaurants and musicians in Eugene, it was a disappointing venue. Okay, getting a chance to meet Eugene’s reigning slug queen and sampling the Coconut Bliss frozen dessert almost made up for it, but the best part was the perfect summer evening weather and a chance to spend time with our friends.

We were also able to take John and Sharon to our favorite farmer’s market in Corvallis on Saturday which happened to coincide with Da Vinci Days. This time of the year is berry city at the market—the assortment of marionberries, raspberries, strawberries, and blueberries just dazzle the eyes.  I was also thrilled to find two other favorites: padron peppers and zucchini blossoms.  After our stroll through the market, we happened to catch part of a Da Vinci Day parade on our way to Central Park and the art walk area featuring displays of this year’s theme: masks.


We rounded out our little adventure with a stop at the iconic 70s bar of Corvallispam sharon vic at squirrels—Squirrels—for a sandwich and a pint of local brew. This past weekend also included a special visit from both of my children!  My son Brooks came down from Astoria for the weekend, so he and my son Jesse came for dinner Saturday night and then returned again for brunch on Sunday. We are used to seeing each other much more often than once a year and it had been almost a year and a half since we had seen them together. The dogs sure remembered them with lots of excited antics and sloppy kisses. We had two great meals together—made even better by Brooks’ contribution of freshly caught tuna loins—and good conversation about highlights (and sometimes lowlights :>) of the past year. Being away for the year sure has heightened our appreciation for these times together.

We are alsovic picking raspberries trying to take full advantage of Oregon’s bounty while we are here. My goal has been to fill the freezer with berries. Last Wednesday, we picked a five-gallon bucket of blueberries from our friends Ann and Don’s garden and this morning, Vic agreed to go pick raspberries at Detering Orchards with me. I didn’t think about Mondays being a bad day to pick as the weekend crowds seemed to have stripped the plants of most of the ripe berries, but we persevered by going to the most remote rows and filled up our handy dandy bucket again for the cost of $2 per pound.  I also made strawberry freezer jam while I have been here so we are doing well on stocking up for the Florida winter (where I found the berries to be tasteless).  I always thought I would get back to lining the shelves with canned fruits and vegetables when I retired—doesn’t quite work for the motorhome lifestyle, but we at least have a large freezer drawer in our fabulous residential refrigerator for stocking up on such goodies.

raspberriescherry pitter

Today we said goodbye to our friends John and Sharon as they headed just a bit farther south into Eugene and we headed north about thirty miles to boondock at our friends’ (Ann and Don) home in Corvallis. We will be staying in Corvallis until Sunday when we start the beginning of almost three weeks at the coast. The weather here the past few days has been unusually overcast, chilly, and windy but today, and the rest of the week, the highs are supposed to be in the 80s with lows in the 50s. My favorite kind of weather!  Yay for summer in the Northwest.

sharon at motorhome
Goodbye to Ms. Heyduke--safe travels.

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