It’s been overwhelming tough for US citizens these past few months. Hurricanes are pummeling the east coast and wildfires are scorching the west. I understand why the hurricanes are getting national attention but I find it curious the wildfires are not. A friend of mine in New York said she didn’t know about the fires in Oregon until I posted something on Facebook.
The latest area to erupt in flames is the Columbia Gorge. Over Labor Day weekend, a 15-year old boy and his friends were hiking the popular Eagle Creek Trail located in the Gorge. They thought it would be funny to toss smoke bombs into the canyon. Extreme heat and no rain turned the Gorge into a tinderbox so the smoke bomb ignited the area immediately. The wind made it impossible for aircraft to drop water on the fire which aggressively consumed the parched landscape. The fire is still raging in the Gorge with only 5% of it contained.
Oregonians are receiving harsh criticism for mourning the blaze. People don’t understand why we’re sobbing over burning trees in Oregon when thousands of people’s homes are underwater in Texas. If you don’t live in Oregon it’s hard to understand the affinity we feel towards the Gorge. Plus, trees are not the only victims of the fire. People’s homes, land, and livelihoods are going up in smoke too.
See, the Gorge is many different things to many different people. It’s not only home to people’s property and livelihoods, it’s also our spiritual playground. The Gorge is absolutely gorgeous. It features hundreds, possibly thousands, of hiking trails. Hiking has profound effects on people. Kieran and I have feelings of exaltation after an amazing hike. We experience an intense level of calm, clarity, and happiness that we haven’t felt anywhere else. So I understand why so many Oregonians are mourning the raging fire, it’s because collectively we have millions of fond memories there.
The Eagle Creek fire destroying the Gorge is bad enough, but to add insult to injury, the smoke from the fire is wreaking havoc over the entire Portland Metro. A thick layer of smoke has blanketed Portland, choking its residents. News reports have warned Portland citizens to stay indoors as much as possible because the air quality is harmful to our health.
Luckily, the forecast says the winds are changing. The westerly winds will not only help Portland breathe but help the firefighters get a handle on the blaze. I thank the men and women who have worked tirelessly to help and support anyone in need during this difficult time.
As far as the 15-year old kid goes, the one who started this mess, I would not want to be him right now.
We obtained a few quotes to tile our kitchen floor. You may remember from my last update we want hexagon tiles that bleed into the existing dining room hardwood. I’m happy to report we have picked out tile and signed the contract to get the work done!
I’ve been working in this nasty ass makeshift kitchen for over a year. I can’t believe in approx 2 months, our floors will finally be complete!
Kieran, Myron, Homie, and I will have to relocate while the work is being done. I’m fairly certain we are going live upstairs in our Airbnb rental room. Our upstairs comes fully equipped with a bedroom, bathroom, and living room area, but it doesn’t have a kitchen or a kitchenette. I’m not entirely sure how I’m going to fix dinner, let alone shoot for Shock Munch. I’ll hopefully figure it out!
Since Kieran and I are stuck indoors, until the smoke clears out, we’ve started some fun projects around the house. Kieran is painting a mural of Mt Hood on our living room wall. The mural is not finished yet (as you tell from the photo) but it’s near completion. Kieran’s been wanting to paint a mural inside the house for awhile now and I can’t wait to see how it turns out!
I have been painting as well. But instead of painting the wall, I’m painting food photography backgrounds. I was walking Homie a couple weeks ago and found two large pieces of wood tossed out by a dumpster. We came back with our car and loaded the wood into the backseat. The wood was in excellent condition. We brought it home then Kieran cut it into 6 pieces. I’ve been having fun painting the boards to use in my food photography.
So far I’ve painted the boards an array of blue, gray, and cookie sheet colors:
What do you think? Which one is your favorite? I’ve used the same painting technique so the boards look similar, but I have 9 sides left to experiment with.
I’m not going to lie, it sucks being trapped in the house all the time. At least painting murals and backgrounds have given us a creative outlet until we can go hiking again. The painting has been therapeutic for both of us.
So that covers it for another edition of the Hartnett Highlights. With so many disasters simultaneously happening in the states, I hope everyone is being safe as can be!
Thanks for stopping by,