Sanna's Bag

“I never seem to have what I need when I need it. I’m going to make a belt-bag that’s bigger on the inside than on the outside, and just carry everything with me.”

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

cozy re-do

I don't often do this, but the tea cozy just wasn'[t working out, so I ripped it out and started over with a simpler pattern which reads much clearer, and suits the pretty nature of the new teapot.

Thirty years ago today, Mt. St. Helen's errupted. The entire top of the mountain blew off. It was a sunny Sunday and I went to a function on the Lewis and Clark campus. There was a porch on the mannor house with a great view of the mountain. People were lined up, eager to see the spectacle, laughing and excited. People leaving the porch were stricken and somber. Seeing that mushroom cloud of ash dwarfing the mountain, spreading inexorably across the sky, was the sort of thing that will put a sense of perspective into your soul. You may be successful, beautiful, smart, and rich, and you still are at the mercy of nature. You think you have it all together? It can be snatched away in a moment, and there's nothing you can do about it.

Having learned that, I resolved to enjoy what I have while I have it. If you're going to have some chocolate, ENJOY that chocolate! If you're going to kiss someone, kiss their socks off! Dance like no one is watching. Appreciate your warm, dry house. Rejoice in the health you have. Share with those less fortunate than you. You are incredibly lucky. Appreciate it.

I don't remember hearing the boom when the mountain exploded. I do remember the earthquake about a week previous. Just a small one, but enough to make the floor shake and the hanging lamps swing.

And then, I remember the ashfalls. Ash got into the ATM machines and made them inoperable. Ash covered the city more than an inch deep on several occasions. Mixed with water, it settled like cement. Car windshileds were scratched by it, and people could exhaust the contents of their windshield washers in an hour. The Rose Parade that year was dry and overcast, and I remember the little kids lined up on the curbs wearing their particle masks. All those annonymous masks got pretty creepy pretty fast, and soon people were drawing smiles or writing greerings on theirs. If you ever try this, do not use a red sharpie to put full scarlet lips on your mask, then wear the mask before the ink has dried. Your head will get all swimmy and you will need to sit down for a while. It's not fun.

Ash filled the gutters on houses, and with the first rain, it set up and clogged the drains. I remember seeing a friend on his roof and asking him what he was doing. He dug out a handful of thick grey mud, dropped it into a bucket on the ground, and replied, "Oh, I'm eaves-dropping."

May you never be under the volcano.


  • At 8:45 AM , Blogger Willow said...

    Thanks for writing your memories of the St Helens explosion. I have a little bottle of ash that my mom collected and saved to give me. My parents were in Portland and I was in Indonesia, the land of a million volcanoes, and I was worried that the Pacific Northwest was going to explode ooze off the map and I wasn't there to shield them from the lava and volcanic ash.

  • At 10:02 AM , Anonymous Benita said...

    So, do I ask how you know that red marker fumes make you woozey?

    Scott uses a lot of Sharpies (filling in large black areas) on his art and there are times it practically knocks me backwards when I walk in the back door at night. Can't be good for his brain cells.

  • At 10:48 PM , Anonymous Lisa Nowak said...

    Thanks for sharing your memories. I was 14 years old and sleeping in the morning it happened. I remember the antenna of my radio rattling against the window and wondering why it happened. Later, I realized it must have been a very minor quake when the mountain blew.

  • At 5:36 AM , Blogger KnitTech said...

    Dad and Uncle Dave were working on Bonniville Dam during that time. Dad came home that weekend, we lived in Redmond at the time, but Uncle Dave stayed. He got up about 1530 noticed the sky was a bit hazy but didn't think anything of it. Went to the bar where he spent most of his free time anyway and finally figured out the mountain had exploded. He slept through the whole thing.

  • At 10:03 AM , Blogger Alwen said...

    I've never been near a tornado, but I've had experiences that make me say "Don't wait!" too! Tell 'em you love 'em, eat the darn chocolate, and look at that sky, it's gorgeous!

  • At 3:15 PM , Blogger Donna Lee said...

    I remember the photos of the trees blown down and it filled me with awe. We are so small.

  • At 5:24 AM , Blogger Amy Lane said...

    I didn't have to live through the ash, but I do remember the news footage... *awesome and terrible* all of it...


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