What Do You Do On A Drizzly Day?

6/12/12  Tuesday  Seaside, OR  (Seaside Campground-TT)

It has been drizzling all day, so we went to Fort Clatsop, shopped and did laundry.

Netul Landing on the Lewis and Clark River

Fort Clatsop

Enlisted men’s quarters

Before we got to the Fort, we traveled on Lewis and Clark Road, then stopped at the Lewis and Clark River at Netul Landing.  The pilings you see in the river are there to help sort and bundle the logs the lumber companies plied down the river.

Fort Clatsop is North of Seaside, South of Astoria.  It’s part of the Lewis and Clark Historical National Park.  We were excited because we got to use our “Senior Passes”, previously known as the Golden Age Pass, to get in free.  We also got stamps in our “Passport” book for National Parks.  The Corps of Discovery (which later evolved into the US Army Corps of Engineers, in charge of lakes and rivers) reached the coast in November, so they had to hunker down for 4 months, due to the weather, before they could make their return trip.  They built this fort for their stay, even doing sentry duty for it.  While here they made salt from the ocean and lived largely on elk.

The park service had rebuilt the fort before 2005, but that one got burnt down.  So when they rebuilt it again, they did some excavations of archaeological items, something that had not been done before.  They are certain they built it at the same spot as Lewis & Clark.  They followed Clark’s meticulous plans of the buildings.  Quarters for the men had beds on the left and right and a fire pit with chimney at the back.  There was a separate room for Charbonneau, Sacagawea and their baby.

Door to enlisted men’s quarters

Note the cool door handle in this next photo!

We also loved this cool trash can, made from a hollowed out tree stump.

Trash can at Clatsop Fort

These buildings were in deep, green woods, with lots of moss, so I’m treating you to another photo.  I shouldn’t have let it get this overexposed, but I’ve been lazy using the “auto” feature on my camera.

I don’t seem to have enough words for all the pictures I want to share!

After Fort Clatsop, we went to Costco in Warrenton and bought the 32″ TV we need before we get to Junction City, OR where a cabinet maker will create cabinetry for it and remove the large, heavy, analog TV that is right over John’s head when he’s driving.  We also got John some jeans, since he wore uniforms all the time, he just never had many jeans.

Tree at Fort Clatsop

All this time that we were gone, our little washer/dryer was working.  When we got home, it had actually washed and dried our laundry – to perfection!  This was exciting because it hadn’t been drying very well before.  Let’s say I’ve been figuring it out.  I’ve found that it is a smaller drum than those in homes and the dryer drum is the same size, thus about half the size of yours at home.  Thus, the most it can successfully wash and dry is about half of this small drum full of items.  It takes about 2.5 hours, IF you are using 50 amp service.  When we were on 30 amp service, it really struggled to dry the clothes.  Thanks to our new RV friends, Betty and Denny, we have now found that we can dry these items better with a fan than with a heater.  We also discovered that if we try to wash and dry a full drum of items (our sheets and pillowcases), the outside gets very dry after 110 minutes of drying time, BUT, the inside is still pretty damp.  So I’ll split the sheets load next time.  What all this amounts to is that it’s best to do laundry about every day.  You also really need a campsite with full hook ups (including gray/black dump) and 50 amp service.  It’s a wonderful convenience, from my perspective and worth the wait (don’t we take longer to wash dishes and find places now anyway?).  If you were a totally practical person, though, I can see that using the campground or nearby city laundry would be faster, in a sense, and most of all, cost less because it takes a LOT of wash/dry loads to pay for the $1,000 you pay for your washer, plus the money in extra gas because you’re hauling this very heavy appliance.

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About Patricia Elser

I've always loved the loose, flowing, transparent look of watercolors, of Chinese paintings and their calligraphy, but alas, no watercolor classes were available when I was in school, so that interest remained buried until my children were grown. Even then, I was afraid that I couldn't really paint, so upon my sister's advice, I actually started to take classes. I signed up for every class available, determined to learn no matter how afraid I was. I came upon a teacher, Stan Miller, who inspired me, who opened the door to success in watercolor. I love to look at beautiful images. I want to capture them forever. All my life, photography was how I gathered images of the beauty I saw. Thanks to all that photography, I enjoy composing pictures, especially up close. Watercolors allow me to add more of me in their translation of that beauty. My paintings reflect my love for music and dance, with their rhythm and flow. I am fascinated by the play of light, so it appears in my pictures as drama for they are filled with darks and lights. Maybe it's the challenge, maybe it's the beauty, but now, when a work comes together, it fills my soul.
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