Saturday, June 8, 2013

Mother's Day Mini-Vacation, No. 25 - Critters at home at Smith Rock State Park


Lizard on a rock along the path we walked so that I could get a look at part of the park.

Three ducks. I believe that they are mallards.

How about that reflection? I took these from way, way off and much higher up than the surface of the river, with my zoom lens.

I am glad that I managed to get these photos. Maybe some other time I'll be brave enough to walk down into the canyon and luck out with ducks landing on the river again.

Seconds later, they're almost all settled into the water.

I cropped this one so that you can see their green heads which are what leads me to believe that these are mallard.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Mother's Day Mini-Vacation, No. 24 - Happy Mother's Day to Me!


Why I enjoyed Mother's Day. No, it's not the Anthem Pear Cider. Leland on the left, Lamont on the right. We're waiting for our Sunday morning breakfast at Brother Jon's Public House in Bend, Oregon.

Leland, leaning back so that I can get his brother Lamont into the photo without feeling like I just might fall over the split rail. (Have I explained that I have a fear of heights? That said fear of heights fills me with thoughts highly irrational?) We're at Smith Rock State Park, Terrebonne, Oregon. More photos to come from Smith Rock State Park.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Wednesday, June 5, 2013, as part of the Portland Trail Blazers History Tour


Scroll down past text for photos! I love these photos!

Thirty-six years ago, June 5, 1977, the Portland Trail Blazers became champions.

From the Web: The 1977 NBA World Championship Series was the championship round of the 1976-77 NBA season. The Portland Trail Blazers of the Western Conference played against the Philadelphia 76ers of the Eastern Conference, with the 76ers holding home-court advantage. Their 4 regular season meetings had been split evenly, 2-2, with neither side winning away from home. The series was played under a best-of-seven format, so the first team to win four games would win the series and become the league champions.

The 1976-77 NBA season started with the ABA–NBA merger. Portland had benefited from the resulting ABA dispersal draft as they acquired Spirits of St. Louis power forward Maurice Lucas to partner with Bill Walton, and Philadelphia had signed ABA All-Star and 3-time ABA MVP Julius "Dr. J" Erving, who had taken the New York Nets to the ABA title the previous year. In the 1977 NBA Finals, five of the ten starting players were former ABA players.[1] (Those five starters from the ABA were Julius Erving, Caldwell Jones, George McGinnis, Dave Twardzik and Maurice Lucas.)[1] While it was no surprise that Philadelphia had made it to the championship series, having posted the best record in the east (50-32, #1), Portland's appearance in the finals was a mild surprise. Portland, a team that was founded only seven years earlier, was not only making its playoff debut with its first winning season (49-33, #3), but it was also making its finals debut as well after sweeping the Los Angeles Lakers in four close games in the Western Conference Finals.

The series quickly went 2-0 in favor of Philadelphia, but over the next four games, Portland mounted a comeback that has rarely been seen in professional sports.

Portland, now leading the series 3–2, arrived back home for Game 6 in the middle of the night to a crowd of 5,000 fans waiting at the airport. With just 48 minutes separating the Blazers from their first championship, "Blazermania" had gripped the city. Philadelphia kept the game close throughout the first quarter, but were down by 15 at halftime after the Blazers netted 40 points in the second quarter. Erving tried in vain to force a game 7 for his team, scoring 40 points, but Bill Walton's 20 points, 23 rebounds, 7 assists and 8 blocks kept the game in Portland's hands, as Philadelphia's George McGinnis missed the game-tying jump shot with 4 seconds left sent for a heart-stopping 109–107 Portland win. The crowd stormed onto the court in a frenzy.

Bill Walton was named finals MVP and was called "an inspiration" by the defeated Julius Erving. Maurice Lucas later said of Walton's post-game thrown jersey that was sent into the rushing crowd of fans, "if I had caught the shirt, I would have eaten it. Bill's my hero."

Portland was awarded two trophies for winning the NBA Championship: The Walter A. Brown Trophy, which was kept by the winning team for only a year until the next NBA Finals; and a newly designed trophy later to be known as the Larry O'Brien Trophy which was now to be kept by the winning team with a new one produced at every NBA Finals since. The Walter A. Brown Trophy was retired shortly after this game.


If you're a sports fan, you can understand how excited I am in this photo. The chance to get this close to the Portland Trail Blazers' 1977 NBA World Championship trophy is something never crossed my mind as even a remote possibility. As my turn to stand beside the brand new trophy approached, I put my bus pass lanyard in my fanny pack, placed my backpack on the table the Blazers had provided and handed my camera to Melissa, a Blazers' season ticket holder specialist, showed her where to look and the button to push, completely forgetting to explain about how to focus it. Thank goodness we had serendipity on our side because this photo turned out pretty good!


In the memorabilia room on the History Tour, I took this photo and the next one of two shots on a big screen TV, mainly because I wanted to show you the trophy in the hands of the Blazers for the first time!

Pretty cool locker room celebration!

And here it is in its travel case. Those white gloves were worn by the man in charge of getting it from wherever it usually lives over to the Memorial Coliseum so that we could see it and have our photos taken beside it. Thanks, Blazers! Here's what I found out about the trophy online: The winning team of the NBA Finals receives the O'Brien Trophy, and has since the Portland Trail Blazers won it in 1977. They were awarded it in conjunction with the original Walter A. Brown Trophy. Each successive champion was awarded a version of this new trophy to keep, and the original, cup-shaped Walter A. Brown Trophy to hold until the next championship. This state of affairs pertained until 1983. The Boston Celtics were the first winner of only this trophy, receiving it in 1984 after defeating the Los Angeles Lakers four games to three.

The trophy, made of 14.5 pounds of sterling silver and vermeil with a 24 karat gold overlay, stands two feet tall. It is designed to look like a basketball about to enter a net. The basketball itself is nine inches in diameter, about the same size as a NBA regulation ball. Valued at $13,500, the trophy is manufactured by the Tiffany & Co. Silver Shop every year. The winning team maintains permanent possession of the trophy. The year and team names are engraved on the trophies, and are often prominently displayed in the team's arena.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Mother's Day Mini-Vacation, No. 23 - Deschutes River at Old Mill District, Jackson's Corner for a really late lunch, and Dakine Grindz for shaved ice delights


Old Mill District on the Deschutes River, Bend, Oregon.

Water-lovers on the Deschutes River at Old Mill District.

The view from our table at Jackson's Corner where we ate a very late lunch--hungry trio.

So hungry that I completely forgot to take a photo before we had all cleaned our plates! Trust me, Leland's plate is as empty as mine and Lamont's.

Jackson's Corner--took this photo on the way back to the Zipcar. I wanted you to see the building because I'm wondering if you get the same vibe from the exterior that I did when I walked towards the building. I immediately thought, "I believe I'm going to like this place a whole lot." And I did. Of course, it helped that both Leland and Lamont had eaten there in the past and knew the food to be good.

As we passed this school playground the first time, I exclaimed, "Did you see that? A bouldering wall!" Then I asked Leland to drive around the block so that I could take a few photos.

How cool! Plenty for kids to climb! And the entire playground is paved so that if it rained before recess, the ground won't become a muddy mess. Smart.

Next Leland and I knew right where we wanted to go--for a shaved ice at Dakine Grindz, just a block or so from Brother Jon's Public House, our favorite weekend breakfast place in Bend. Lamont's not interested in shaved ice, so he sat down on the grass to watch people, including these "cyclists" peddling away on The Cycle Pub. Serendipity that I got this photo just as they wheeled it by the No Parking, Bike Lane sign!

The young man carefully prepared my huge-sized treat--I think it was called the Big Beach.

She's finishing my three-flavored delight: strawberry, kiwi, and honeydew. Leland had told me on Friday when we rode by this place that we needed to come back at some point on the weekend because he knew how good these cool treats taste--was he ever right! And it stayed good from first bite to last.

We drove over the Deschutes one more time, passing through this pretty park and neighborhood on our way back to the Writer's Retreat for a well-deserved rest. Hours later we ate a mediocre supper, watched a bit of TV and went to bed. We had lots planned for Sunday before driving all the way back to Portland.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Mother's Day Mini-Vacation, No. 22 - Across the Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway--the Deschutes River--an old dog knows all the tricks.

Little dog, six or seven months old. Big dog, 13 years old. Stick and man, ages unknown. Fun for old dog--ageless. Learning for young dog--ongoing. Photos of old dog having a blast--priceless!

Shower time!

Help an ol' dog get outta the river, please.

Throw it again. I'm just about ready.

I see it. Thanks!

I love to make these big splashes!

Stick, you belong to me!

Son, you've got a lot learn and the energy to do it!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Mother's Day Mini-Vacation, No. 21 - I finally get to see a place where the guys have camped and bouldered, other than on Google Maps as the result of a SPOT Locator check-in e-mail


Bouldering is a style of rock climbing undertaken without a rope and normally limited to very short climbs over a padded mat called a crash pad or bouldering mat so that a fall will not result in serious injury. It is typically practiced on large natural boulders or artificial boulders in gyms and outdoor urban areas. However, it may also be practiced at the base of larger rock faces. Someone who engages in bouldering is called a boulderer.

Lamont walked up to the boulders, looking here and there. The whitish, light gray streaks here and there are chalk folks use to help them grip the boulders as they attempt to climb to the top. Believe it or not, we're only a short distance along a deeply rutted, dusty dirt road from the nearby Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway, well away from the snowy area of course.

Leland explained that they camped on the springy ground in the clearing in front of the line of boulders. There's Engine, waiting patiently for us to return so that we can continue to explore the area across the highway, near Widgi Golf Course.



More chalk streaks point out the paths to the top for many who love to boulder.

The guys have been here at least once, maybe more. I can't remember.