Tuesday, July 15, 2008
(Train ride from Eugene to Salem.)
On to the capital, Salem! (Silly me was thinking Portland was the capital.) I took the train from Eugene to Salem and spent the afternoon with Allison. We went to the State Library to look at the largest collection of books in Braille. When we got there, we found out that the books had been moved to another state, because it was too expensive to keep them in Salem. The receptionist gave us a card of the alphabet in Braille and book to decode. Upstairs we perused the card catalog. It was the size of a room! I used one while living in England, but it's been so long I don't remember how to use the catalog. Allison and I spent a lot of time going threw the drawers of obituaries. Some were from the 1800s and had such unusual sentence structure. One man was kicked by a horse and was described as now his cold, clammy clay like. I wish I could recall the sentence in its entirety, because it was very descriptive and surprisingly funny.
Allison treated me to Thai! It was a great time and wonderful food. Thank you! I found my new favorite dish: it was a stir fry with rice, cashews and miniature corn. If only I could remember the name.
At the capital building we watched a movie on the building and of the Gold Man. He stands on top of the capital. It's law that no buildings are aloud to be taller than the Gold Man. We learned that he represents pioneer men and women. He's not solid gold. Instead he's bronze with gold leaf. I also learned why Portland wasn't voted the capital. It' s because Salem already had a University, the oldest west of the Mississippi (I love typing that word, so does my mom). According to Shannon, the building looks like a bowling trophy. I completely agree.
(The capitol, AKA bowling trophy. Photo from the net.)
(The gold man, which is really made of bronze. This is my pic. I am sure you can tell.)
(The Gold Man standing on top of the capital. Watch out he is very reflective.)
(The incredible view from the 2nd tallest building in Salem. The winner is a really old church that has a tall steeple. It's my pic. ;-)
(It is so crazy to think that I use to baby sit Autumn Rain. Now we're both in college! We're on top of the capitol.)
It was a new experience having Allison drive me back to her house to see the rest of the family. I use to babysit the older 4, but now they are all in high school or college.
For a couple of hours I hung out at the house. Elaina and Faerynn showed me how to write with a feather. I played with the 1 year-old puppy and the 2 kittens. They are all so adorable! Elaina and Faerynn showed me their sketch books and other books like the nature drawing book. It looks like so much fun! I am going to start once I get to Portland. The girls drawings where very impressive. Their observational skills are very good. I am really impressed.
That night the college group from their church had a BBQ for Allison's return from Germany. She's been there for 3 months studying abroad. There was lots of great food. We played badminton, which I haven't played in years and years. I missed a lot of the birdies and hit from a bunch of them that were hit at me. I forgot how much I really enjoy that game.
Labels: liberating trip from BART