Valley woman flings broccoli

Late next morning I followed my son, husband, nephew, assorted few other persons, and a tour guide through the main quad at a university north of our home, which should not be named aloud due to its competitive relationship to our hometown U of O.

My nephew Nick is a senior at afore-unmentioned university and would love it if my son decided to attend there a little more than a year from now. We discovered the beauty of the tree-bordered campus and heard about interesting offerings, such as geo-science degrees my son might consider. But final decisions are a long way off from his perspective. A passing student’s glowing sales pitch regarding the school brought few words and a pale stare. He needed food.

So we found the lunch area. Small, fast restaurants served the guys hamburgers and shakes, while I sought out the Panda Express. Behind the counter a lady spoke quick, Asian-accented phrases. I had to ask her to repeat them several times. People in line behind me looked annoyed.

I caught on to my need to order either a two or three-piece entrĂ©e, with one side dish. “Mixed veggies,” I tried to intone quickly, “with chicken broccoli and, let’s see…” The woman blinked hurry-up in Morse code. “Teryaki chicken, please.”

At our table, watching my nephew inhale several Carl’s Jr. spicy meat sandwiches, I tackled my mounds of chicken and bushels of broccoli. Huge florets defied attempts to be divided by a plastic fork. I bit in.

“So Nick,” I said, swallowing, “you want to hike Mary’s Peak with us?”

Our son counted on this next adventure, not far from our present Corvallis location, and Nick agreed it would be fun for the afternoon.

“Great,” I said, flinging my fork and a huge limb of broccoli into the air. Gravity pulled it back to connect with my shirt and the chair beside me before it rolled a foot or two along the lunchroom floor.

Though tempted to act as though nothing had happened, I bent and retrieved the large, green item and made a show of wrapping it in Tim’s napkin. For some reason, he always grabs extras and they end up near me.

The view from Mary’s Peak hid somewhat in the haze, and we’re not sure what story explains the dragon’s eye*, but our time above the valley was a good one.

*Nick gazes with some concern into the "eye."


elixir said…
I hate trying to eat firm broccoli with a plastic fork. I love your composure.
You weekend outings look delightful! I am looking forward to hiking trips this summer with Soren on Dad in the backpack, and our new little one snuggly overheating me in the bjorn. I hope we can find something as intriguing as your dragon remains.
Patti said…
Wow, gorgeous photos and scenery! I liked the beach photos also. It reminded me of our old "beach days" when we lived on the California north coast.
LeiselB said…
Oh what lovely photos and what a delightful time for you all...thank you for sharing. :-)
Deanna said…
Thanks for commenting, Elixir, Patti, and Leisel. You know I just have to go crazy with the new camera for a bit. Should calm down at some point. Maybe.
Anonymous said…
Dragon's eye? Huh? What am I missing?
Deanna said…
Anonymous, hope the update helps. And who is this? What am I missing?