Saturday, August 22, 2009
Oregon, Summer 2009
Oregon is so beautiful! Smith Rock near Bend, Oregon. We stopped for some hiking, rock climbing, and nature watching. We saw a deer, many lizards, and a ton of outdoor enthusiasts! Gordon traveled all the way down the Oregon Coast this summer, halfway with his friend, Mark, and the other half with me. The Tillamook Cheese Factory is where it's at! They have the best dairy products on Earth, hands down. Their Mild Cheddar cheese and Chocolate Peanut Butter ice cream cannot be beat! Well, maybe their Pepper Jack cheese and Vanilla Bean ice cream... oh it's just to hard to decide! We stayed the night in Gold Beach and went for a walk in the morning. We drove down Highway 101 until Crescent City, California and then back up on highway 199 through the Redwood Forest. There we saw amazingly huge trees that were at least 300 years old. We even climbed a few! Here is a short lived mullet/ fohawk... fullet that Gordon fazed out in his transition to short hair. Sorry Mom, yes, he cut it all off. The two greatest flags ever! The best breakfast ever! Upper Rogue River Gorge Crater Lake National Park. It is a caldera that was formed 7,700 years ago when Mount Mazama blew erupted. It is now a lake that stretches 6 miles wide and is 2,000 feet deep with a constant temperature of 38 degrees Fahrenheit (200 feet below the surface). The lake is at about 7,000 feet elevation, with many peaks around it, some reaching up to 8,000 feet. There was a huge storm coming just as we arrived on top of the highest peak surrounding Crater Lake and my hair was literally standing on end (there was no wind, you could hear the electricity buzzing- the air was ionized), it was time to go down. Within minutes there were huge lightening bolts crashing all around us and we ran for the car. We decided, oh, we will just continue driving around the lake, but then it started to hail so hard we couldn't see anything and the sky turned black. So, we parked at one of the lookouts next to two Fire & Rescue vehicles. We were screaming inside the car because the lightening was so loud and bright and close, and we thought the windshield was going to crack because of the size of the hail balls! Again, trusty Subi, in the evening sunset. They say that there are 2 reactions when viewing Crater Lake for the first time, people stand dumbfounded or begin taking pictures immediately- any guesses on Gordon's first reaction. Correct, he was dumbified secondly! We had an excellent summer. We visited friends and family in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and Ontario, and drove at least 3,500 good miles. Now we are back in Nigeria- we just finished the first week of classes- only 39 more to go! We will buy plane tickets this week to go to Kenya and Tanzania in December for 3 weeks. Anyone want to meet us? We are flying into Nairobi on the 19th and leaving on the 9th of January. We will try to summit Kilimanjaro and go on a safari in the Serengeti. This year I am teaching grades 8-12 Algebra 1 & 2, Geometry, and AP Calculus. Gordon is teaching grades 10 and 12 World Literature, AP Language and Composition, and Global Studies.