The Daily Discoveries of Gustavo Valentine

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Location: United States

Tuesday, August 31, 2010


Brooke and Nigel!

Ah, the refreshment!

Random teens flying off every cliff!

Nick sizes up the rope to river ratio!

Nick goes in!

Heidi sizes!

Heidi goes in!

David goes in!

Nigel goes in!

Dad goes in!

Mom goes in!

And Nick takes it a step further, goes higher than the rest, then crosses to the other more dangerous rope swing and attempts this:

River enthusiasm does eventually lead to river wisdom

The Washougal River

In the summertime in Portland, you're always hearing people talk about going swimming at the river. We finally went to the Washougal, all the way to the end of it, past where the road stops, and we found out what all the fuss is about.

Well, the water is crystal clear and when it's scorching outside it is the ultimate refreshing temp.

There are perfect little chairs in the rocks for sitting and sipping beers or juices. And in the river there are natural chairs in the limestone so you can sit in the middle of the river and take it easy just like you were home in your lazy boy.

Note my cool new life vest. I barely need it now that my swimming lessons have totally kicked in.

We took Uncle Nicky here when he came through. He is the ideal river enthusiast.

On one end is a private peaceful family pool for us kiddies, but if you walk up river a bit you get to the real party, teenager style. There are people jumping off every available rock and cliff, rope swings and natural pools, swimming and sunning and music and mayhem.

And all along, these winding roads of river, shallow and warm.

Little kids play in them like nature's water slides. This is the apex of summer Oregon fun right here in this river bed. The jam. For serious.

The beauty of the limestone will knock your tevas off. Up next, The Jumps.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

River Deep Mountains High

on another beat-the-heat family excursion...

We found a place, a viewpoint, a short drive from Portland, where you can see FIVE mountains from one spot.

Mt. St. Helens on the left, Mt. Rainier on the right.

Mt. Rainier on the left, Mt. Roosevelt on the right.

The Mighty Mt. Hood. To the far right is Mt. Jefferson, but you can't see it here.

And then the Columbia River also. A cool summer tip: Twenty degrees cooler up here than in town.

And then the majestic never ending forests of the Pacific Northwest. Thank you thank you so much to whoever decided NOT to cut down all these trees!

We see your beauty, oh great ones! I am the Lorax! I speak for the trees!

Monday, August 23, 2010

summer art fare

Friday, August 20, 2010


My parents drove out to Boring, Oregon for the Pickathon folk music festival. Not boring!


Good old friends the Cave Singers and company were out there too. They were camping up in the hills with hundreds of other campers. The real deal of folky fun was found up in those hills in the night time. There are twinkling Christmas lights that light the path to all the tents and to the stage in the middle of the woods.

Bands played for 3 days at across three different stages and two barns.

Pete and Derek and Marty Cavesinger fit right in.

They just built up a festival right around the farm of Mr and Mrs Pendarvis.

And it was clean and eco and not a plastic bottle in sight. You got a tin cup that you used all day for beer or free water. You write your name on your cup and hang it up on a peg when your done. Simple. Portland philosophy at its finest.

Mom and Dad said there were a lot of kids there running around dancing and hula-hooping and doing archery so maybe we'll all go together next year.

They stayed the night out there and I spent the weekend fishing with Bobby. And, I don't have fancy pictures of my trip, but I will tell you that I now can cast and fish all on my own, no help, and this day I caught a BUNCH of little fish and one regular sized rainbow trout that grandpa says "anyone would be proud of". It's on.

But I would have liked to have seen our pal Michael Hurley play in a rustic old barn, talking about the songs and answering everyone's questions.

We have about 8 of his records and play them all the time and I know all the words so I could've asked him some good questions about when he was a puppy dog and stuff.

As you can tell, my mom was sort of transfixed by the billowing sails overhead and the gorgeous sky peeking through.

It was good for mom and dad to get out, into the world, into the world of freedom and friendship and song.

Good ole Justinee Wienee was out there trippin the light fandango.

And then the night came, and Bonnie Prince Billy took the stage. He's one of both mom and dad's all time favorite men.

And they sat on the grass with their arms around each other and the music played and the breeze blew and the people whistled and sang.