Thursday, October 11, 2012
The Best Laid Plans
If everything had gone according to our plans, this post would actually be all about our trip to San Francisco. I say "if", because we didn't actually go. All the arrangements were made, hotel booked, car rented, clothes washed and ready for packing. Unfortunately our cat, Gordon, had other plans. The day before we were scheduled to leave, we noticed she was acting strange, she seemed very lethargic and had no appetite.
We finally had to admit that she just wasn't well, and we ran her to the vet at 6pm on Saturday (yay for big vet bills)! When we finally got the diagnosis (colitis), we were told we'd have to give her medicine twice a day...for TEN days...yikes. We canceled our reservations, returned the car and went home crestfallen.
We kind of moped around for the first day, but then decided we'd make the most of it. We were still on vacation, after all, and any day not spent at work is a good day, right!?!
We took a short hike on the first day, then decided to take a day-trip up to Seattle, which we hadn't done in quite a while. The Pacific Science Center was hosting an exhibit on King Tut, which sounded intriguing.
I've been to Seattle a few times, but had never actually visited this area adjacent to the Space Needle...these arches were pretty interesting.
After we finished up with the King Tut exhibit, we wandered around and found the Exotic Butterfly exhibit...and thought, "why not".
It was actually kind of amazing...there were hundreds of huge, colorful butterflies everywhere...it was crazy...and humid...way too humid!
One thing is for certain...butterflies don't cooperate when it comes to having their picture taken...little divas.
I think every time I visit Seattle, there is some sort of Chihuly exhibit...and this was no exception.
The iconic Space Needle, which apparently has been re-painted to the original specifications.
This strange garden installation at the base of the Space Needle caught my eye. After reading a little bit, it was inspired by Formal French Parterres, but planted using erosion control...the plants are all planted into the "barriers".
I'm not sure this is particularly practical...but it was an interesting idea.
A lot of the plantings around the space needle focus on annuals and exotics...but of course, I gravitate toward other things...like these lovely Pennisetum :-)
Since we didn't have any set plans (aside from the King Tut exhibit), as we headed out the door I posted on Facebook, asking if anyone had a recommendation for a good nursery/garden center in the Seattle area. There were a lot of good recommendations (and the one I REALLY wanted to seek out was Dragonfly Farms...but we ran short on time), so I decided on another popular choice, Molbak's.
Molbak's seems to really cater to the seasons, and appropriately, there was a plethora of autumn decor around the nursery.
I was a little sad that they grass selection was so small..but they still had some nice plants, like this lovely Muhlenbergia capillaris.
I love Molinia variegata. Actually, come to think of it, I love pretty much ANY Molinia!
While space is at a premium in my garden, I couldn't pass up these Mukdenia 'Crimson Fans'...just look at that amazing color!
Back home, we've been mostly relaxing these past few days...and the weather has been really lovely...and I can enjoy it more, now that the promise of rain is in the air. I'll be happy to have the rains return, to be sure, but I've actually been pretty surprised at how well the garden has done this summer. The parking strips, in particular, have proved to be very tough. I've only watered the established parking strips a handful of times all summer...and they seem totally unfazed.
So, even though our autumn vacation wasn't what we had planned, we've made the most of it. I even managed to sleep until 8:30 the other morning (for those who don't know me...that's sort of like most people sleeping until noon)! Now that the weather is cool, there's really nothing I need to do in the garden, except to sit back and enjoy the show as the fall spectacle unfolds.
Oh, and in spite of her loathing of the medicine, Gordon seems to be doing better and better each day :-)
Posted by scottweberpdx at 8:45 PM
Labels: chihuly, garden, grass, molinia, muhlenbergia, mukdenia, oregon, pdx, portland, seattle, space needle, vacation
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wow you made at great adventure out of a change of plans,,all things for a reason...great picsReplyDelete
Thanks, Sharon, I think so too...sometimes a wrinkle in your plans can turn out to be a good thing, after all is said & done :-)Delete
Lovely pics and interesting French barrier, but I agree, not sure how practical. Loved the grasses as well. Oh, I also tried a few butterflies and yip, not so easy, you did a good job.ReplyDelete
Hahahaha...glad I'm not the only one who has trouble with the butterflies!Delete
Oh c'est beau !! Scott, you are always bathing in a golden light. It is beautiful.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Delphine...the light this time of year is especially lovely, isn't it?Delete
I think holidays at home are almost better than those away. And a sleep in until 8.30 sounds very decadent. Seattle looks amazing. Glad Gordon is on the mendReplyDelete
It really DID feel decadent to sleep in so late! I agree...there is something wonderful about not feeling obligated to DO something all the time.Delete
Unexpected adventures sometimes surpass the planned ones, and it's good to have the rare opportunity to really enjoy your local area rather than exploring more distant places. We enjoyed a week off at home last month, with a few day trips to the coast amid time spent on the house and garden, almost as good as a holiday away, most of it was about the good company and being free :).ReplyDelete
Glad that your kitty is recovering well.
So very true, Hillwards...it was relaxing and MUCH cheaper than traveling!Delete
Fantastic photos Scott, and Seattle looks amazing! Glad to hear that Gordon has recovered and doing well again :)ReplyDelete
Gordon is feeling MUCH better now...pretty much back to her old self, for the most part...and yes, Seattle is a pretty cool city.Delete
Great light. Even better pictures!ReplyDelete
So sorry about Gordon. HOpe she's feeling all better now. Looks like you had a great visit to Seattle. Love that Chihuly piece. How long has your 'Tiger Eyes' Sumac been there? does it sucker for you? I've got one planted in a container and it's been there for four years now. What a tough plant.ReplyDelete
Hmmm...I think this is it's 3rd full year now...and so far (knock on wood) it hasn't suckered even once...thank goodness! It's just now starting to really color up...and I'm hoping it really gets red this year, since in the past, it hasn't really gotten that amazing 'Sumac' fall color.Delete
Sorry your trip didn't work out. Hope your cat is doing well now though. The photos are fantastic, although the plants around it look kind of strange to me. The design and what they did in the center of it is unusual to say the least. Your gardens are still holding up well.ReplyDelete
Cher Sunray Gardens
Thanks, Cher...Gordon is feeling quite a bit better...although she's not very pleased by having medicine shoved down her throat twice a day!Delete
Planting in the serpentine barrier is an interesting concept. The pictures are good shots and tell the story.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Stiletto...I agree...the idea is very interesting...I wonder if they are going to keep it going, or if it was just temporary?Delete
Glad to hear he is doing better!!! And how fun you got to explore Seattle! The fall color there is beautiful. I love the shot of the sidewalk in front of your house- all that color!!!!!! I love reading posts this time of year from all over and seeing all the change in color. That serpentine thing was interesting. I have never been to Seattle so I enjoyed the tour!ReplyDelete
Thanks, Kacky, Gordon is definitely on the mend :-) I agree about fall...it's so awesome...and Seattle's trees are showing color much sooner than those around Portland...I was amazed, they seem to be at least a week or two ahead of us down here!Delete
Glad to hear Gordon is doing better. Bummer that a big trip that you've been anticipating for so long didn't work out. Isn't the butterfly exhibit cool? I went there this summer, that room is even hotter and humid-er at the height of summer. I had to go through a couple of times, just had to get out and catch my breath and cool off. Did you actually go through the Chihuly Museum? It's gorgeous!ReplyDelete
OMG, Alison...I can only imagine! It was fairly cool & cloudy on the day we went...I bet it was an absolute OVEN during summer! We didn't get to the actual Chihuly exhibit, for some reason...I think we were hungry and got sidetracked!Delete
Anyone who will derail a planned trip for their kitty's health gets my vote. So glad to hear Gordon is now improving! And you definitely made the most of your change of plans - just plain relaxing is greatly undervalued, IMHO.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Jane...I know a lot of people thought we were kind of crazy to cancel everything...but I just couldn't bear the idea of poor, sick Gordon here with strangers while we were off playing in another state...I wouldn't have enjoyed a single minute for all the worrying! I agree...I have enjoyed this week off so much, that right now I'm actually kind of glad we stayed home :-)Delete
And all this time I was imagining the fun things you were up to in SF. Ah well, there's always next year and the GB Fling!ReplyDelete
Glad you made it to Molbaks, it's big (and a little "gifty") but also has a lot of cool plants.
I kind of thought the same thing...now I have an even better reason to go to the Fling this spring! I thought the same thing about Molbaks...there seems to be a HUGE amount of space given to tchotckes, doesn't there?Delete
Two important things struck me hard about today's post!ReplyDelete
First, I am a cat owner, so your devotion to Gordon the (female!) cat gets 10 stars. But secondly, I just received rain chains for my (70th) birthday and so zeroed right in to your final photo! Can't wait to have them installed. Hmmm, I wonder whether they'll survive our Canadian winter. Perhaps I'll take them down in a few weeks and put them back in early spring. :)
Lovely, lovely grasses, lovely Seattle. Long time since I've been there.
OMG...yay for your rain chains!!! I got mine for Christmas a few years ago and absolutely LOVE them. It might be a good idea to take them down if you're worried about snow weight pulling on your gutters...then again, they might be ok out there.Delete
They are installed! See http://gardenbugworld.wordpress.com/2012/10/13/yay-for-rain-chains/Delete
Lovely pictures as usual. Hope the cat is on the mend.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Spiky...Gordon is feeling much better now :-)Delete
Glad your Gordon is doing better, I worry when pets aren't feeling well. I have one with a swollen eye right now. He keeps wiping it, will keep an eye on it for a day or so, sometimes they take care of it on their own.ReplyDelete
I like having a 'home' vacation sometimes...take advantage of what is around you.
Oh no, Janet! You're so right...sometimes they sort of snap out of it...we usually give it a day or two...as long as they aren't obviously struggling. Our other cat had the same thing happen to his one eye...we had to put an antibiotic salve in it for a few weeks. Oddly, he was pretty good about it...thank goodness!Delete
I can certainly relate to this, our pets are like our children, they are a priority. Sometimes things happen for the best even though we don't know why right away. I love the Molinias also, so wispy and see through, need to move one though that I think is in too much shade from other plants.
I find some of our best vacations involve exploring what is close to home. And as you say, any day not at work is a good day. Amen!ReplyDelete
So sorry your plans were thwarted, but I love that you care so much for your cat. Seattle is cool--brilliant backup plan, with vacation days to spare. Rain today at last!ReplyDelete
We got rain in Kansas also. Enjoy your vac as it will probably go too fast.ReplyDelete
It was nice to take a look at Seattle as I lived there for 8 years as a child. I am sure the city has changed so much since the 70's. I laughed at your comment about sleeping until 8:30...totally relate! Sounds like a great vacation despite the change of plans...relaxing, museums, Chihuly and gardening...sounds pretty good to me! Glad your kitty is doing better!ReplyDelete
I haven't been to Seattle in many years so it was nice to tour with you. Here we have fog today so it is more like San Francisco! JackReplyDelete
Oh Scott, you are a wonderful cat daddy! We would have done the same thing in your situation. Glad that you got to visit Seattle though. You really should come north again sometime as there are lots of cool nurseries to visit!ReplyDelete
I have four dogs one of whom is diabetic, blind, and has thyroid disease so I know what's it's like to be tied to the house. Scout, the blind dog, got lost in a perennial bed earlier and was just wandering aimlessly. It was actually pretty funny. I'm glad Gordon is getting better and you were able to make the best of a frustrating situation. Your garden looks great. :o)ReplyDelete
Slow, meandering vacations are my favorite. I'm so glad you made the most of it and that Gordon is improving!ReplyDelete
What we do for our animals, eh! Glad you made the most of your time anyway and enjoyed reading about your trip.ReplyDelete
I love your photographic work Scott. Your garden looks great. Not sure what the climate in Oregon is actually like but many plants identical in your garden and mine so I imagine you have a dry climate garden.ReplyDelete
My best vacations have been replacement vacations where original plans went awry. Yours sounds perfect.purrr.ReplyDelete
Hi Scott - catching up on your blog, I missed a ton! Your yard is looking spectacular (if it is even possible to look more spectacular than it always does!) Your love of grasses shows - fall is yours! But more importantly, happy to hear your kitty is feeling better :)ReplyDelete