The Daily 750

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Lewis and Clark

Saturday, November 12, 2005

This is a view from my kitchen. I'll be surprised if it lasts through the weekend.

Here's a closeup of the tree, an Acer palmatum dissectum 'Seriyu'. Makes my heart go pitty-pat every time I walk into the room but it's been raining Lewis and Clark all day, and supposed to rain Lewis and Clark through Tuesday, so I'll be fixing my eye on something else by this time next week. That damn huge blue house behind us, no doubt, which I didn't even see until a week after we moved into the house. Love is blind. The house was on the market recently at a surprisingly low price ($249,000), and we thought of buying it. But then what? If I can't tear it down -- and I can't, because it's in a historical district -- then I don't want it. Some neighbors on the other side bought it. "I'd like to take off the top story," the neighbor said. Instead she'll have it painted next year, when the Lewis and Clark rains end. Last year she had her own Craftsman bungalow painted in muted tropical colors that melt like butter in my visual cortex: soft apricot and papaya, with dollops of mango. I won't hope for "anything but that Norwegian blue" -- because some really nasty color combos have gone up around town lately. (Yes, I coulda and shoulda planted evergreens up on the Gaza Strip, but I dinna.)

Yesterday was the grand public kickoff of the bicentennial celebration of the arrival of the explorers Lewis and Clark. Jefferson sent them out to explore the Missouri River and see if it led to the Pacific, and here's where they found it. They stopped for four miserable months in 1805, when it rained every day but 12. They camped in a forest surrounded by swamps and it's a wonder Sacagawea didn't scalp them all. All the ladies who come here from warm climes would, if it weren't for their pills and patches. They fear winding up like these two ladies at the ceremony yesterday: