Saturday, November 17, 2007

Big windstorm

The most enjoyable thing I've done this past week
Drive around Joseph and the north end of Wallowa Lake on Monday morning with my son taking photos for our newspaper of a wild, wild windstorm. He was driving most of the time, while I was trying to get photos out the car window, but it was blowing and raining so hard, even in the car, I could hardly keep the lens clear. There were gusts from 100 to 78 (depending on where gauged), with limbs and trees toppling, one barn fire, wires down ... Nothing like a natural disaster (no one hurt) to get the journalistic adrenaline churning.

The worst thing that happened in the past week is that my trusty digital camera suddenly quit working last Saturday night, while I was covering the annual Healthy Futures dinner/auction given by the health care foundation (to raise money, this year for a new ambulance).
It's a Fuji S5000 with a 10X optical zoom that I bought on-line for less than $300 almost four years ago, in preparation for my first trip to London. I carry it everywhere, use it for work and easily take an average of 100 photos a week.
One minute it was working at the dinner; I turned it off for awhile, and then it wouldn't turn back on. I changed the batteries .... nothing has worked. My theory is that after 3 1/2 years of hard use, it just wore out.
For Monday's storm, my boss had left her camera home, and I borrowed a Cannon from the ad department; it has a lot more bells and whistles, but I had trouble adjusting during the heat of the storm. I know I could have take even better shots with MY camera. Alas. I think I'll be going on-line to see if I can find another, just like the one that quit. Unfortunately, there are no camera repairmen within 200 miles of my end of the road location.

Aftermath of the storm - We didn't drive up to the head of the lake, the resort area, during the worst of the storm, where it turned out the most damage was. Trees fell on cars, houses ... The state park lost about 30 big trees, which is sad, but amazingly no one was hurt. It was very dangerous, so it's probably a good thing I missed it. Geoff from our paper went up the next day and got some very good photos. He put together a really good slide show for our web site. (

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