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Thread: When One Road Closes…

  1. #1
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    Arrow When One Road Closes…

    Since we live out of town, we try to plan ahead for our trips into town. With the prices of gas today, it is prudent to not make those 25 mile round trips just because we want a pint of Hagen Daaz. So about Sunday, we took inventory of the coffee, milk and rum and planned on going into town on Wednesday. Tuesday the phone rings. It is a call from the sheriffs department with a warning to not hang up. Turns out it was a reverse 911 call telling us that there has been a slide and the road into town is closed at the one place where there is not an official secondary route. It was estimated to be closed for only a few hours.

    Later we get another call telling us the situation is a bit worse than thought and the state engineers were being called in. The road is closed until further notice, thank you and good bye.

    The alternate routes were given as going west to the ferry that takes you across the river into Oregon and then drive east to the bridge that takes you back across the river into Washington if you have to do business in Longview or east of the slide. By the way, the ferry can only hold 12 cars a trip. Even though they are now going to extend the hours and run twice as many crossings 24 hours a day the delay can be up to three hours. There are some old logging roads and easements across property that can be taken to get into town, but you should only travel if you have AWD and high ground clearance. Besides there is one guy up in the hills who does not like the idea of the easement on his property and he may cut down trees to block the road.

    Washington is an interesting place. We live along the Lewis & Clark Trail. For another thread on this see:

    http://www.sawmillcreek.org/showthre...y-Won-The-West

    I have heard that this state was actually named due to a misunderstanding. The natives in the area supposedly called it wetshitton which translates 'wet falls from sky a ton'. Lewis & Clark thought that somehow back in 1805 the natives had somehow heard of the great leader of America, Washington.

    The reason it is the evergreen state is because it is raining three days out of four.
    Which is also the reason the hillside collapsed and blocked the road into town the day before we planned on going into town. BTW, that fourth day, it is usually misty or drizzly.

    Just an aside, I have kind of grown used to "sky water." I will be outside and not realize it is raining. Then I will go into the greenhouse and hear the rain pelting. That is when it becomes noticeable that it is raining.

    Those Eskimos that have 40 different names to describe snow, that's nothing. We have 40 different kinds of rain on days when it is forecast to be partially cloudy.

    Anyway, more to the point we were getting low on milk, cat food and coffee. The three essentials to motivate us in to get off the farm action. Since the road to town has not yet been opened, we decided to take the alternate of going to the coast and then south on US 101 into Oregon to replenish our pantry.

    Normally the trip across on the ferry costs $5. The time and gas saved makes it a break even. Due to the road closing, the state has waved the fees and everyone rides for free. Shuttle busses have been set up for some companies to encourage people to ride the ferry as walk ons. Today, even though we arrived at a time when there would normally not be much traffic, there would have been about a one hour wait. That means there were maybe a couple dozen cars ahead of us. We decided to turn around and go the long way.

    It is interesting what different days of the week can do. Every time in the past this one antique shop between mile post 32 and 31 has been closed. Today it was open so we decided to take a look. Turns out that they only open regularly Thursday through Saturday or Sunday. Some of the stuff is on display out side. In the land of eternal (infernal) wetness that means it is RUUUUUUSSSTTTYY. Some of the stuff seemed a bit high to me. There was a peavy at $35. (for those not familiar with such, a peavy has a point that presses into a log and a hook that grabs the log so it can then be rolled.) I mentioned that I needed one, but that is more than I wanted to pay. His response was that a replacement handle for one cost that much, stalemate.

    We were testing each other in that dance of the hagglers. He was good at it. He clearly has a few years on me.

    Candy, my wife, spotted a few crocks of 10 and 12 gallon size. My only need of those would be to brew my own beer. Maybe if I could get some sugar cane to ferment and then distill into rum… that is a different story. We then made our way into the shop and the proprietor told us the story of how he came to be the owner of so many crocks and old jugs. A woman was a collector of such and when she passed on, her husband remarried. The new wife didn't want anything to do with the first wife in the home, so it was all sold off and Muary bought the pieces he liked.

    I mentioned my woodworking and my quest to find tools that could be put to use. He said he only had a few in the back of the shop. After I looked around a bit I asked about the tools. We walked through the shop and into a back counter with a few planes. One looked like a #3 but not quite. I asked to see it. He removed it from the case and handed it to me. It wasn't a #3.

    2 side.jpg

    The price tag said $35.

    I handled the plane and pointed out that the tote wasn't original and told him that Stanley used rosewood. The knob was rosewood. The blade is a bit on the short side. I removed the blade and looked at the frog. The frog screws looked like they were wire brushed.

    I mentioned that one of the things I do not like to see on and old plane is screws that look brand new. He said, that was the way things are sometimes, dang he was good.

    Trying my best to not look like a kid with a $100 bill in a candy store, I peered into my wallet.

    I knew in my heart that I shouldn't start at $15, but just felt that I had to. A little clearing here. You can tell a bit about a person by offering less than half of the asking price. Before making this offer I could see this person was not going to get offended. Some people will. A good haggler won't. They do not want to tip their hand. He just said no and didn't make a counter offer. Most of the time when a counter offer is made, another offer a bit below that will seal the deal.

    My first comment was that $35 was more than I really wanted to pay. His reply was that he would try to find out how much he had in it so he could come down.

    He did not have a record number on the tag, so he had no way to know how much it cost him. He would not take $15 so my next offer was $20. He said no and that he had to get $25. I said OK.

    He then said that since it didn't have a recording number his wife didn't know about it and we could do it at $25 even.

    The down side or the sad part, someone had decided to make a moving filletster plane out of this plane at one time.

    2 sole.jpg

    Two of the holes are threaded.

    We dealt on a few more items that Candy wanted, $2 total, and from our conversation my best guess is he mostly buys things and then doubles what he paid for them to set his price. On some things he is very much like me, he knows that someday they will sell, but until that day he wants to hold on to them so the price is a bit higher. There are many items that would be easy to sell, but then the money gets spent and that special treasure is gone.

    Times with money and no special treasures are more difficult than the times with no money that can be spent with an accumulation of treasures.

    So after all this, sometimes it is a nice inconvenience that the road is closed and we had to take the road less traveled to gather our provisions.

    jtk

    Epilog - Muary mentioned that he bought another box of stuff that had a plane in it that was just a little bigger than this one. He had a #4 and a #5 in the case so I am curious if it could be a #4-1/2? He looked but could not find it while we were there.

    Maybe that road will stay closed just a little longer.
    Last edited by Jim Koepke; 04-08-2011 at 5:02 AM.
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

  2. #2
    Great story, Jim, thanks for sharing.

    There's a reason for everything, for sure. Best just to go with it, sure seems to have panned out for you and the missus.

    Rich
    *** "I have gained insights from many sources... experts, tradesman & novices.... no one has a monopoly on good ideas." Jim Dailey, SMC, Feb. 19, 2007
    *** "The best way to get better is to leave your ego in the parking lot."----Eddie Wood, 1994
    *** We discovered that he had been educated beyond his intelligence........
    *** Student of Rigonomics & Gizmology

    Waste Knot Woods
    Rice, VA

  3. #3
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    Thank you for sharing. You write well - very enjoyable to read.

    Regards, Patrick

  4. #4
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    Neat story, thanks for posting.

    It's funny, for some reason this morning I was thinking about the time I visited that part of the country maybe 20 years ago, and visited Bonneville Dam, and just happened to be looking over some NOAA charts of the Columbia River, right before reading your post!

    That's a whole 'nother world out there..

  5. #5
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    Did you ever get your coffee, milk, and cat food?

    Pam

  6. #6
    "'wet falls from sky a ton'."

    LOL, nothing about never seeing the sun exc for perhaps a month out of the year? In that regard rain is only a very minor annoyance. The WA defn of rain isn't like that in any other state. It really doesn't rain in WA but sort of varies between a mist and sprinkle most of the time. It keeps everything continually wet so mold/mildew/algae/moss/lichen grow on any and everything. In WWA drought warnings go up if there's no rain for a week. By summers end people are complaining about the lack of clouds & rain. The state color is pasty white. I could go on...

  7. #7
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    Wetshtiton??? You think that's bad,I lived about 500 miles North of Seattle for 6 years in Ketchikan ,Alaska. It rained 13 FEET a year.

    By the way,IIRC,you are talking about a cant hook. A peavey doesn't have the hook,just the point. There was always logging going on in Alaska in the early 50's. I did my share of tree cutting,blasting,and land clearing in my early teens. I was setting dynamite or hauling cable for stump pulling all day at 13. Constant rain. My parents were in the Coast Guard,and got extra pay(meager as it was) for being in a U.S. Territory.

    Before we went to Alaska,we lived in Renton,a Seattle suburb,where the coal smog hung heavy in the wet air always.

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    Y'all really make me LOVE North Carolina.

  9. #9
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    Did you ever get your coffee, milk, and cat food?
    Yeah, that is another story. We both knew we needed milk, but didn't write it on the list. At Costco, I thought the price was a bit high. Compared to what we usually pay locally. Oregon has some different pricing and it may be that the Oregon coast is a bit more remote.

    So after Costco, we went to the Orange Borg to get some lumber. As I was rolling out to the truck, I realized we wanted to get some sand for use in the greenhouse. Well, it was all the way at the other end of the store anyway. So we go back in at the other end and get the sand.

    At Fred Meyer Candy wanted to check some things in the garden section. She uses the little motor carts since she has bad knees and we often go on separate shopping missions. To make an already long story short… after all the packing to get the cold items in the ice chest and stuff secured in the back of the truck, those bags of sand were handy, we are heading up the highway toward home. That is when Candy asked, "did you get milk?" We both laughed and drove across town to the Safeway. Over $200 in groceries and we forgot the milk!

    By the way,IIRC,you are talking about a cant hook. A peavey doesn't have the hook,just the point.
    I am sure you are right George. I have a hard time remembering all the names of all these things that are a whole new world to a guy that was brought up in a rural area, but nothing like this rural area.

    To all, I am glad you enjoyed reading as much as I enjoyed telling about a slice from our day's journey. It was an adventure to remember.

    jtk
    Last edited by Jim Koepke; 04-08-2011 at 11:16 AM.
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

  10. #10
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    Well,it's been since the early to mid 50's since I've been concerned with logging,and could be wrong about the peavey. I can tell you,I would NOT care to be the logger who had to take his peavey to the front of a log jam in a river,and wedge the "key" logs loose!! I don't care how good you get,there must have been many,many loggers drowned that way.

    I used to walk way out on huge log booms in Alaska. They were truly enormous,being what seemed like a mile long,and hundreds of yards wide. Their logs were all at least 3' in diameter. I'd go way out on them when they were tethered next to the shore. If a log had rolled,I could have gotten crushed between them,or trapped beneath them and drowned. With all the dangerous stuff I did as a teenager,it's lucky I survived.

    Those logs were in the ocean,and not real still like they would have been in a quiet lake. They kept them in booms while waiting to saw them up at the Ketchikan Spruce Mill. All that wood was going to Korea,to rebuild it after the Korean war.
    Last edited by george wilson; 04-08-2011 at 2:23 PM.

  11. #11
    Good story, Jim! I was down past that Antique shop a few weeks ago, and it was closed. It may be some time before the state gets the road open again, even though this has happened a number of times in the past. You might find you like going the other direction for supplies rather than dealing with the ferry, etc.

    Mel

  12. #12
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    As I recall, he said he is open only Thursday through Sunday. He has been closed some recently due to health issues.

    Maybe it is my luck that they were closed when you went in our you would have been the one to get the #10-1/2.

    It is a bit longer drive to go to Astoria. It might not be shorter than taking the ferry and coming back to Longview. We just do not care to spend a few hours waiting in line for the ferry.

    jtk
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

  13. #13
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    When I posted about this I had forgot about the other thing that happened on the way home.

    The headlights decided to have some fun with us.

    I posted about that in the Off Topic forum:

    http://www.sawmillcreek.org/showthre...ways-Something

    jtk
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

  14. #14
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    Great story and find. At least you did not have to pay sales tax in Oregon

  15. #15
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    Great story and find. At least you did not have to pay sales tax in Oregon
    We bought the plane in Washington.

    The wood and such was bought in Oregon without sales tax.

    jtk
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

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