A Journey Complete

WOW Award Badges

Last Wednesday, Anna completed her first Girl Scout Brownie Journey—Wonders of Water (WOW). I’ve tracked her progress on the blog this summer. Here’s a quick review …

Love Water. Date Earned 7/28/14

Loving Water.

Anna completed the first part of her journey by following water of the Willamette River from one of its sources in the Cascade Mountains to the Pacific Ocean, collecting samples at four specific points along the way, and tracing the journey of a single water drop from a raincloud over Waldo Lake to a beach on the North Coast.

Then she created a water map following her hypothetical drop of water.

Starting at Waldo Lake, Anna traced a line in blue highlighter following the North Fork of the Willamette to where it meets the Middle Fork outside Oakridge, then following the Willamette through from Eugene to Portland where it empties into the Columbia, and then down the Columbia River, into the Columbia Estuary, and the Pacific Ocean.

She learned about water. Now it was time to care for it.

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Saving Water

A seagull at Nye Beach

A seagull at Nye Beach (© 2014 by Anna Ozab)

As part of her Brownie work this summer, Anna is taking the Wonders of Water journey. She earned her Love Water Badge last month and now she’s working on her Save Water badge. To earn it, she read about how all animals (including people) depend on water, and how scarce and valuable a resource it is. Then she had to come up with a Save Water project that would help at least some of the creatures who depend on water.

Her inspiration was a simple question in her WOW Book. “How Do You Carry Water?” (Wonders of Water, p 52)

When you camp or hike, do you carry bottled water or do you use a canteen? Canteens and other containers that you can use again and again are better for the planet than plastic bottles of water. Why? Because plastic bottles are thrown away after one use and they often don’t get recycled. Some end up floating in the ocean, where they harm sea life!

That last sentence stuck with her.

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New Gig

Olde English Flea Market

Photo: Julia Ozab

My first article for MyEugene on the Olde English Flea Market:

Old England meets odd Eugene at the Olde English Flea Market


Eugene Flea Market held Sundays, 9 am-4 pm, through August

Seven o’clock on Sunday morning. An empty lot. Cars begin arriving one by one, slowly lining up aside a row of trees. Car trunks pop open. People pull out tables and unpack boxes filled with trinkets, knick-knacks, and collectables.

An hour passes, and more cars arrive. A second row of tables lines up alongside the first. A lady makes tea and scones, while her husband greets vendors, collecting payments and directing each one to an assigned spot. He looks up at the grey sky and hopes the rain will hold off until the evening. More cars enter. A third row of tables, and then a fourth assemble as another hour passes. Everyone’s ready. The event begins as customers file in.

This could be any one of a countless number of English “car boot sales” (boot being the English word for trunk) that Graham Timmins remembers from his native Manchester. But this parking lot is six thousand miles away from Manchester, in Eugene Oregon, and Graham and his American-born wife Zeeta aren’t customers—they’re the proprietors of The Olde English Flea Market, open every Sunday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., through August.

“We’re trying to make it really, really fun,” says Zeeta, “and bring a little bit of ‘English’ to Eugene.”

Of course, the cultural exchange goes both ways as evidenced by some of the more unique vendors.

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