Travels with Cosmo, Second Installment

or, drive until the dog farts.

Mormon beehives, victory-dancing spouses, an impromptu meeting of the Papillon Society of the Interstate and the scenic Columbia River Highway. All in this edition of Travels with Cosmo.

Cosmo- Hey it’s titled travels with Cosmo and you haven’t let me talk yet. The trip has gone like this…

Mornings- I take a walk around a hotel and poo. Then we have breakfast where I hold out for people food. They think that is the only way to get me to take meds. Then in the car where I sit in my seat, close my eyes and sleep for 200 or so miles. When I need a change of scenery I lie on the pillow next to my seat or get Mom to let me sit in her lap.

AD- I have a special seat belt for him up front. (Just in case you are worrying, Designated Driver.)

Cosmo- We stop at rest stops where I get out and relieve myself. Occasionally I get to sniff up a bitch at these stops. The other day I sniffed up a Papillon bitch. She had an over protective, oversized mate with her. Who ever heard of a 20 pound Papillion?

JK: Yes, it’s true. At Lyman rest area in Wyoming we met two other Papillons on a road trip from California, one of them a 20 lb male. I think he was juicing.

When I bother to look out the window it’s usually cows and corn or cows and soybeans. One time it was cows and a Llama.

JK: The next morning, the local farm news program had a segment on guard llamas for your sheep herds. It’s true! This trip is just full of synchronicity.

On the 3rd we went to Shoshone Falls in Idaho. Great smells there! I saw a rockchuck (aka a woodchuck) and a lizard. Mom wouldn’t let me chase him. Since I chased the squirrel and broke the leash Mom is worried about me around wild areas.

AD: No I’m not! The lizard did sit there mockingly though. I should have let Cosmo chase him, the problem is Cougars could be at the end of the path.

JK: I seem to remember being worried about the lizard being some weird, poisonous, Papillon-eating Western lizard.

Cosmo- hey it’s my turn! Anyhow great smells at Twin Falls Idaho. Two great parks!

Now on to Portland we will be staying in my third favorite hotel, where they know how to treat a doggy prince.

You ask my first two favs? The first is on the campus at Temple University. They had an itinerant chef- come handyman who would come in the room and play with me while Mom and Dad where gone. Cartoon network and fetch!

The second is Carmel Inn. The place was great! The bar gets all kinds of dogs. The staff will bring you anything you want. If you want to lie down, they will bring you a blanket so you don’t have to lay on the ground. If you’re thirsty they will bring you a drink in a champagne bucket. If you are a doggy of a diminutive size they put the water in a smaller white wine bucket.

I better get going. I wanna catch more animal planet before Mom and Dad come back. It’s like bitches gone wild.

JK speaks about a miscellany:

One last thing about Wyoming: we saw a few fields full of what looked like small tents made out of planks, about 3-4 feet high and maybe 4-5 feet long. Kind of like two small lean-to’s leaned together. Not sure what they were. If anyone knows, can you post a comment.

And other thing from this city boy: Why does grain need to be elevated? Is it so it can be loaded on rail cars? Why not grain cellars?

We also noted that the state highway signs in Utah use a beehive logo. Anyone know why? Is there some connection between Mormon pioneers and bees?

AD and I had a chuckle in Utah. A minivan had just pulled over on the opposite side of the highway and the lady passenger opened her door and stepped out onto the shoulder and did a little dance that any couple would recognize: the “I told you so” dance. Wonder if he wouldn’t ask for directions?

It’s wildfire season out here, too. We saw one that took up almost the entire side of a reasonably-sized hill (maybe a few dozen acres?). Lots of dark smoke and burnt vegetation with small shimmers of light deep within where the fire was still burning.

When you enter Wyoming, signs along the highway list all the local radio stations for severe weather alerts. Nebraska, Idaho, Utah and Wyoming all had gates which could be lowered across the highway like those railroad crossings. I guess closing the interstate is routine out here.

And one word describes the high country out here: windmills. Lots of them.

Lastly, we saw these strange hornet-like hives up on the walls of the Snake River Canyon. Anyone know what they are?

Fourth of July

We took I-84 into Portland. It hugs the Columbia River for 100 miles or more. I declare it the best highway ever: gorgeous views! We saw people kite skiing on the River. The colorful kites danced a ballet in the air above the skiers. Of course there was the usual wind surfers.

Arrived in Portland in time for wine tasting. As you can see by the pic Cosmo was an honored guest. He sat on a couch during the tasting and let people adore him. We met two local women enjoying a girl’s night out. (Nattie, you would have liked these women.) The ladies were giving tips on what to see and do to a couple who were visiting from Fla. They were celebrating their 30th Anniversary.
Long story short we ended up partying in the hospitality suite sharing a few bottles of wine and some great apps. (One of the local ladies is a chef, so the food was oh, so good.)

Fireworks report- Not so outstanding.

Fifth of July:

Portland is a garden city. AD is the gardener in our family; JK is a city boy who doesn’t know a root from a branch, but even he was impressed with the Japanese Garden and the International Rose Test Garden. If it wasn’t overcast, we would have had a great view of Mount Fuji…I mean, Mount Hood from the Japanese Garden. Nice work, Portland.

On the way back, we passed the Wednesday Farmers Market and stopped to grab lunch. Berries, berries, berries! It’s berry season out here and blueberries are everywhere at astonishing prices, less than $1.50 a pint for a whole tray. Cosmo did not like the handmade Italian sausage JK offered him, but JK thought it was great. (Cosmo is getting more picky since he got heart disease. Maybe JK should only eat what Cosmo will.) The Wednesday Farmers Market is on SW Park Street in the Cultural District: kind of like Park Avenue in New York, only nicer. Imagine a really nice Garfield Place in Cincinnati surrounded by all of Cincy’s museums and theaters.

In the afternoon, it was time for a pilgrimage to Powell’s City of Books. JK’s eyes were, of course, much bigger than his wallet so AD helped him pare down his selections.

AD- I have a collection of antique gardening books. I found two great books here. One was a small pocket book about propagation by Penelope Hobhouse. A book by Ernest Wilson titled the Aristocrats of Garden. Wilson traveled the Orient collecting specimens that are commonplace in our gardens now, such as Arrowwood Viburnum, Cotoneaster and Mock Orange. The last book I bought was Old Time Gardens; it had an inscription written when the book was gifted in May 1905.

Powell’s has a whole store dedicated to Gardening and Cookbooks. I don’t know if I’ll have time to get there, but I hope I do.

Until next time...

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