Monday, May 31, 2010

Mt. St. Helens

I remember reading about it a few years after Mt. St. Helens erupted. I was in elementary school. You remember the "Weekly Reader"?

People who lived through it have some amazing stories to tell - there was a lot of innocent death, as my former editor, who won a Pulitzer for the coverage, told me.

I remember an argument with literally everyone in the newsroom arguing except me - over whether to spell out "Mount" or write "Mt." in a headline. I don't remember what everyone decided on eventually, but I thought, "What a fucking ridiculous argument!"

I finally went there today - more than 30 years later, the place still has a hazy, haunted, barren look. It reminded me of T.S. Elliot's poem, "The Wasteland."


It was in the 30s 4,000 feet up. Snow!

It was so foggy that we couldn't see much, but it was still breathtaking, eerie. The air almost seemed to glow.

We froze our asses off, but it was worth it. (And no, my hair did not cooperate, so please don't look at it.)

It was - well, the word that comes to mind is magnificent. I'm not a big fan of the great outdoors, but this was just amazing.

Our friends from NYC were visiting and we took some pics along the warmer bits of the drive. Are they cute or what?

20 comments:

Senorita said...

Nice pics. You all look great !

G said...

Trust me, I'm not looking at the hair, just marveling over the fact that I can connect the blogger to an actual person.

Great pics just the same.

Fireblossom said...

The Weekley Reader!!! I remember that! Of course, when I was reading it, the stories were mostly about English tyranny, and how to make a good stout barrel.

Mount...Mt...Mnt....that place in the pictures looks stark. The man you are with reminds me of Vladimir "Blacky" White, inventor of the dryer sheet. Of course, when he first invented them, he didn't understand what he had done, and sold them for years as ladies' handkerchiefs. He also invented the stick pin.

JLee said...

I do remember Weekly Reader! Those pics are very haunting and beautiful.

Lynn said...

That sounds like quite an excursion! And you and Mr. RK are cute, too.

Logical Libby said...

I had a friend in elementary school who claimed her Dad flew over the volcano in a plane and reached out the window and scooped up ash.

Fucking liar.

Ily said...

The pictures are beautiful! I remember hearing about Mt. Saint Helens (or was it MOUNT St Helens)? I think it was Mt. SAINT Helens! Anyway, yeah, I'd LOVE to leave the flatlands and be 4,000 feet up! How cool is that??

mac said...

Those are great pictures!
Yes, the volcano looks nice too :-)

Sadako said...

Such gorgeous pics. What an awesome looking trip.

Aliceson said...

What a fun trip! The temperature change must be wild especially this time of year!

LL Cool Joe said...

Great photos and both you and your friends look cute. :)

Riot Kitty said...

Thanks everybody! Glad I'm not the only one who remembers the Weekly Reader. I'm sure my school-age siblings would give me blank stares if I mentioned it...

Riot Kitty said...

PS Libby, I am laughing my ass off about your friend!

Darth Weasel said...

I remember 2 things; 1) everyone outside Oregon thinking my home was buried because I lived in St. helens, even though Japan literally got more ash than we did because of the direction it blew...

and 2) the "experts" saying it would be centuries before anything grew, only to have to backtrck when signs of life appeared the next year.

Beware the experts...they do not know as much as you think they do.

RA said...

It's beautiful in a haunted way. You can still see, or rather feel what happened. Thanks for sharing. :)

Mike_D said...

WEEKLY READER!!!

They had those in CA too, eh? I also remember the book catalogs and I was upset because my friend got the Mr T book and I didn't!!!!

Wow, i haven't seen Andrew and Heather in so long!! They look great!! Can't wait to see you guys soon!!!

Riot Kitty said...

Darth: Experts aren't all that they're cracked up to be, eh? There are even plants and grass growing right where the lava explosion took place.
RA: I thought so too!
Mike: They had them in Texas! I lived there from first - sixth grade. Can't wait to see you guys, too!

Green tea said...

Oh yes the weekly reader..they even had that back in the olden days.. :)
I think I enjoyed reading my kids copies as much..
What a cute couple..and so young :)

Shionge said...

Hey :) This is the first time I take a good look at you & Mr. RK - Both of you looked great!!!

Riot Kitty said...

GT and S: Thanks! :)