Today is Friday, Feb. 12, 2016

Off the Wall
Feelings about the Methow winter run hot and cold

Feelings about the Methow winter run hot and cold

By Bob Spiwak It’s the first day of February and we’re surrounded by snow, and the forecast is for colder weather. Yesterday, while looking for old copies of the Goat Wall Street Journal, I came across a calendar from 1982. In those days I did not use a journal, but important things like covering the...
Shades of yesteryear: change is the only constant

Shades of yesteryear: change is the only constant

By Bob Spiwak The snow is still falling and I am stalling when I should be mounting the tractor and pushing the snow around. Ms. Gloria is writing a letter to an old friend, Gretchen Gibford, who lives in Millwood, near Spokane. Both women were active in what was then The Methow Valley Artisans, a...
Getting into outages with the right planning (and attitude)

Getting into outages with the right planning (and attitude)

By Bob Spiwak There were two power outages a couple of weeks ago. Fortunately, they were planned, and we were alerted well ahead of time as to their time and duration by the electric utilities (Okanogan County Public Utility District and Okanogan County Electric Cooperative). This was helpful and considerate, for when outages occur suddenly,...
A cautionary tale about getting lost in the Methow

A cautionary tale about getting lost in the Methow

By Bob Spiwak It was sometime in the mid-1980s, during hunting season. Darkness was upon us, along with a heavy rain. There was a knock on the door and I pulled the curtain aside to see a man and a dog. Both were dripping wet.  The man, who we’ll refer to as Victim, asked if...
History of the car count: driven to distraction by holiday traffic

History of the car count: driven to distraction by holiday traffic

By Bob Spiwak This month we will examine the semi-annual holiday car counts we have done for many years, and the advances made at the counting site in West Boesel, which now include a boost from the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT). The car (actually vehicle) count began as a lark. Bored one morning,...
Visible progress on Methow River salmon recovery project

Visible progress on Methow River salmon recovery project

By Bob Spiwak In a previous column we touched on the Yakama Nation’s salmon recovery project on the Methow River near the Weeman Bridge, and since the end of July things are moving apace. From a quarter-mile up the road from our West Boesel location, there is the daily concert of high-pitched beeps as various...
Do I have an obsession? You can count on it

Do I have an obsession? You can count on it

By Bob Spiwak It is not unusual for people from all walks of life, and rides of life as well, to ask me if I am doing a car count on Highway 20 during busy traffic weekends in the valley. The query seems to be coming up more often as the years go by. The...
Island hopping with my golf bag

Island hopping with my golf bag

By Bob Spiwak One of the perks of being a golf writer is travel, especially when it is on someone else’s dime. In that case, there is usually a quid pro quo (something for something) involved, so it is expected that nice things will be written about whoever is picking up the tab. In this...
Just a couple of fishing fools

Just a couple of fishing fools

By Bob Spiwak When Ms. Gloria and I moved here in 1981 our primary activity was going to yard sales and auctions. There we met lots of people, and after a few weekends encountered some of the same people we had met and gotten to know. However, after several months of buying or bidding on...
How the old Weeman Bridge ended its span life

How the old Weeman Bridge ended its span life

By Bob Spiwak It was John Hayes’ idea that we should have a gathering to commemorate the demise of the old Weeman Bridge one evening back in 1984. What you read here is a combination of my memories, my wife’s recollections and the Methow Valley News of Aug. 23 that year. Quoted sections and photo...