Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Owl Song

Initiated an impromptu trip to Lake Wenatchee (above, with Dirty Face Peak in the background) with Rebecca -- and Carmen, our golden retriever -- on September 22-25. Had to button up Owl Farm for the winter and help friend Kelly Tjaden replace a beam on the foundation of the tree house he's building on our property.

Leaving Eugene on Thursday morning early, we gutted it out the full 400-plus miles to Plain, Washington in time for a barbeque salmon dinner on the property. Carmen loves frolicking in the woods and the rivers, so she would enjoy being in her element.

Kelly arrived on Friday and we spent some time rounding up a few more 2 by 12s to beef up the existing beam on the tree house (above), the south side of a triangular foundation. On Saturday, we spent time putting together a heftier beam that would be twice as large as the original in an effort to bolster the previously sagging span.

When completed, the renovated beam would measure 8 inches by 12 inches by 18 feet in length. The final product looked heavy, so we put in a call for reinforcements and neighbor Thomas Steinke gamely volunteered to help us hoist the unwieldy beam into its place on the tree house (view looking southwest, below).

Kelly, Rebecca and I (and Carmen, of course) celebrated the day's accomplishments with a bottle of wine, a movie on the laptop and a Duck football game on the satellite radio.

That night, I awoke just before sunrise to a duet between an owl and a rooster. The owl hooted in a desperate attempt to forestall the sun; meanwhile, the rooster countered by crowing the inevitable arrival of dawn. They seemed to be singing by turn, one in response to the other, quite the battle of the birds.

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