To 2006

More Best Wishes for the New Year

January 7, 2006

One week into the new year, our Round Two (and hardly an exhaustive list) of Best Wishes for 2006:

To the Port of Hood River commissioners, a magnifying glass in their search for the best person for the job of Port executive director.

To the Warm Springs Tribes, a condor feather — for the protecting thunderbird — at the passing of their beloved leader, Rudy Clements.

A sharp eye to motorists along Interstate 84, Washington Highway 14, and Oregon Highway 35 — all byways where dangerous rockfalls have occurred in recent weeks.

An instant mental thesaurus to authors everywhere, up to and including Hood River native daughter Virginia Euwer Wolff, whose book “Bat 6” will be the focus of the Hood River Community Reads project this spring.

Quick sales to all those folks who park their “For sale” cars along public roads — in violation of city ordinance.

To the Hood River, Horizon, and Cascade Locks basketball teams, all enjoying seasons peppered with wins and hustling play — a firm grip on those rebounds.

To the Hood River ski and snowboard teams — calm, cold days and steady knees.

To the HRVHS wrestling team — more pins than a tailor shop.

To the HRVHS swimming team — straight dives and smooth strokes.

And, while they are not yet in competition, a wish for lacrosse players (elementary, middle and high schools) for big crowds this spring to see this exciting but misunderstood game.

Thanks and a round of applause in advance for our local students in many other avenues, including (but not limited to) music, drama, robotics, speech and debate, computers, business, agriculture, electric cars, and FFA and 4-H.

They also compete, learn, and entertain, with less attention than they deserve.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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