Thursday, February 20, 2020

2019 In Review – May Arizona, Oregon, Alaska

I gave myself very little time back home in Arizona – just five days after returning from Peru. I had to give my presentation on bird mimicry for the Maricopa Audubon Society, do the big shopping and shipping run for the non-perishable food for my annual Gambell cooking job, and pack for a month in Oregon and Alaska. The talk went really well, and I had prepared my shopping list well in advance, so I got the shopping done in one day, boxing most of the next day, and off it went.

Amazingly, all 19 boxes arrived together in about five days at Gambell, even though I had given them 2 ½ weeks, and nothing was damaged. I then left for Oregon, where I arrived three days in advance of my tour with the idea of looking at potential places to move to. On the flight we had an amazing view of Crater Lake, Oregon’s only National Park.
Crater Lake National Park

It was the wettest and coldest tour I’ve ever led in Oregon. We had at least some rain every day except the last, and we ended up having only four instead of the usual ten picnic lunches (one every day). My group was a happy one anyway, and we saw some beautiful country and great birds.

At Malheur National Wildlife Refuge this Sora put on quite a show; I took this out the driver’s window of the van.

Then at the end of the tour I dropped off the group in Portland, drove to my dad’s in Corvallis where I had stored the van’s back seats and where I dropped off all my tour supplies until next year’s tour. Early the next morning, I returned the van back up in Portland and flew to Anchorage where I had to begin my two days of grocery shopping and boxing of the perishable food. This is what my hotel room looks like after the first produce run. I turn the air conditioning on full blast, so my room is like a walk-in refrigerator, and I sleep in one bed, stealing all the blankets and comforters from the one in the photo.

The week of cooking went by super-fast, as usual, and there were no grand crises. This was the second year that I made this Coriander Seed Chicken with Brussels Sprouts, and it was very popular once again.

The end of this tour bled a bit into June, but this year I stayed on for a few days on my own, and I’ll show that in next month’s blog catch-up.

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