28.6.21

When You’re at a Crossroads: Take It from Me, It’s Okay to Feel Lost (Notes from the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest)

In this post, a high school English teacher gets lost in the forest of northwest Washington.
I am stuck at a crossroads — which way to go? Following the course of the Foss River in the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest, I’m allowed to be lost, a wanderer. I’m happy I found a rock to sit on so I can gather my thoughts, drink some water (from the mountain creek, of course). If you don’t hear from me, it means I’ve taken up residence in the forest. I’ll come out when I’m dang ready.
Foss River
The Foss River


27.6.21

That Weekend I Stayed in a Small Mountain Town in the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest (along the Cascade Mountain Range in Washington State)

In this post, I write about why fantasy for the rustic life is really a sham. I'm not made for the mountains. But I liked my visit to Skykomish, Washington.

Greig Roselli
"Sheeeeeeshhhhh!"
The Amtrak Empire Builder Passes Through Skykomish, Washington
The Empire Builder 
passes through
Skykomish
I found a rock to sit on to do some writing. When you arrive in Skykomish, Washington — you're in the middle of the Cascades Mountains. Because a railroad tycoon by the name of Stevens, built a railroad from Spokane to the Puget Sound — the place is smack dab in the middle of train history U.S.A.
Crotchet Fishbowl in Skykomish, Washington
Fishbowl

By the 1890s, the United States had already built a few transcontinental railroads — thanks to the unsung contribution of cheap Chinese labor — which the government tried to put a stop to with the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882. Even though Washington D.C. put a smackdown on immigration from Asia, the economy begged to open more portals to the West. A direct train route to Puget Sound. Open more trans-Pacific trade. But a train through the Cascades would prove to be a more difficult challenge. The mountains are a formidable presence — up to about 4,000 feet above sea level, which for a Louisiana boy, is a lot. I'm breathing air at high altitudes, refilling my bottle with water from the Foss River. 

Greig Roselli hikes along an interpretative nature trail near the Maloney Creek in Skykomish, Washington.
Shoes Made for Walking?
Loving being outdoors — but dang, it's uncharacteristically hot today — the high is 90 ° F. Even the people who live here say that’s hot. Sitting by the river — I don't jump in, but I feel the coolness of the rock, and the water is ice cold to the touch. 

What’s your favorite picture that I took?

Rock outcropping over the Foss River

Foss River in the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest

Great Northern Railway Coffee Cup

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22.6.21

All Aboard! The Capitol Limited is an Overnight Train between Washington, D.C. and Chicago (And Where I Hung Out with Mennonites)

In this post, I wax lyrical about the joys of long distance train travel via Amtrak. Also, I’ve started a travel log of sorts.

All who wander are not lost. If you know me you probably know I like to travel by train. It's been a bucket 🪣 list of mine to traverse the United States on every @amtrak route in the United States. 


So far, I've relegated train travel to the South and North East regions. But, hey. Now that the country is opening up a bit more after a year or more of Covid-19 restrictions, I'm venturing West — along with the Capitol Limited, to Chicago — and stay tuned; later this week, I'm boarding the scenic Empire Builder train. Yay.

And of course, I've already met some fabulous folk. Lonnie is traveling from West Virginia after spending time “with his woman,” and Burke is a college student studying Chemistry. And it appears, this morning, I've just run into a gaggle of giggling Mennonite women just outside of Toledo, Ohio. 

What should I do for my four-hour layover in Chicago? See y'all real soon, boo. Sprinkles!

Toledo, Ohio
Some Mennonite Women