Community Comment

The Art of the Ramble...

Just south of Ione, looking at the mountain's reflection in the river. (Dave Laird / Dave Laird)
Just south of Ione, looking at the mountain's reflection in the river. (Dave Laird / Dave Laird)

Good morning, Netizens...


Report upon a good ramble...


I suppose I need to admit it from the onset that my wife was right, that I had been stuck behind the desk, in the Great Chair, for far too long. Even after I knew beyond a word of doubt that she was correct, that I had become frumpish and withdrawn during the long Winter, as if clinging to something inanimate in my daily routine, I agreed to the concept of our Ramble, as we have come to call it, and shortly after 9:00 AM we were off.


The rules of the ramble have always been the same: we climb in the family Hootmobile and simply try to our very best to get ourselves hopelessly lost. The only rules by which we declare a Ramble in play is (1) we pick a direction of the compass and (2) we drive until we see a road, highway, dirt path or what-have-you that looks interesting at the time. Repeat until either exhaustion or time has expired. I do believe the longest Ramble we ever took was a circuitous trip from Coeur D'Alene to Headquarters, Idaho via Dworshak Dam Road with various side roads far too numerous to name in Clearwater County and from thence back to Spokane. The total time elapsed was over 12 hours start to finish. It was delightful.


Our Ramble this weekend consisted of a trip to Ione, Washington and beyond. Why Ione? Why not? All winter we have been muttering imprecations about the snow in Spokane, while Ione had an equal or greater amount of snow and yet you never heard a word about it. That's because it is a sleepy little burg where no one minds Mother Nature; they simply tighten their lips and proceed onward.


While we were Rambling around Ione, we stopped at one of our favorite roadside attractions, a place along Highway 20 called The Outpost where, once upon a time we used to listen to several of our favorite bands playing music beneath the stars. We had driven by it once, because the sign said “CLOSED”, but the second time around, we saw people sitting on the lawn next to the river and thus we learned it is under new ownership.


We stopped, got acquainted with the new owners, studied them in our own time-proven methods of character assessment, and after only brief thought, have promised we will return once they finish recovering from the vagaries of winter and the previous business's closure. They are nice people, with good business backgrounds. It takes a lot of guts to buy a down-at-the-heels resort during bad economic times, a fair amount of capital and some luck.


Once we found a peaceful pull out along the road, we took this tranquil picture to remind us that one can always find peace and tranquility. Sometimes all it takes are two people committed to the game known as a Ramble, and a commitment to each other.


Dave




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