Sometimes it seems that there are only two types of cars here in Little Bay Root: Subarus and Prius. There are usually a couple of each parked on any given residential block and the roads are just lousy with them. My hiking buddy Z just bought himself a Subaru, the quasi-official vehicle of hikers in the Pacific Northwest. Really, you can’t park at a trailhead without picking a space beside a Subaru. It must be a law or something.
I’ve just spent the last six days with my offspring. He’s a wonderful little man and we often get along just fine, but it rained most of the week so that we only left the house twice during those six days. That’s right, we were locked inside fortress Portmandia together for the better part of a week. I’m not sure how I managed it without drink, and only time will reveal the enormity of the coming therapy bills for the boy’s PTSD.
February wasn’t much of a blogging month around here. I’ve been swamped with feral catalogs at the book mines, dealing with a sick boy around the house and feeling a bit of general restlessness. I just haven’t had much meaningful to say. Last week I made some changes to my routine. Mrs. Portmandia picked up another part-time job, so I am responsible for taking the little man to his child care two days a week. I also started running again, managing to go for three short runs. I think that all the extra activity might be finally shaking me out of the winter doldrums.
I’m finally recovering from my first major illness of the season. Being sick is one of the worst things about becoming a dad that I never expected. I should have, I’ve always known at the back of my head that kids were germ factories, but somehow I imagined that that would simply lead to a sick kid. Sadly, my stunted imagination has shown its optimistic limitations and I’ve spent the last few winters ill. In some cases deeply so.
I’ve been thinking about writing a lot, ever since Mrs. Portmandia started writing her novel. I’d like to write more, but mostly I procrastinate my writing time away. As a result, more daunting projects never really get started (though I do have a few notes for a post-apocalyptic hipster novel). I’ve been trying to blog as much as possible, figuring that writing is writing, and that any time that I spend writing will help me build skill and be better. Last week it occurred to me that I might want to write for kids.
This last Friday, Portmandia Jr. and I rode our bikes up to Forest Park for a walk in the woods. There are a number of smaller parks embedded within the bulk of Forest Park and this time we were visiting Macleay Park, one of the first parks in Portland. We rode to the end of NW Upshur and locked up our bikes by the bathrooms. On a nicer day we could have stopped and eaten some lunch at the picnic facilities or the big lawn.
So once again, Portmandia Jr. and I biked across town and into Forest Park to take a little hike. The previous week, we had spied a trail leading up and away from the fire road, but since we were already very near the limited range of my son, I decided to go back on another day. This time we simple rode our bike into the park and locked up at the trail head.