It’s the end of the trail

End of the Oregon Trail Interpretive & Visitor Center, Oregon City, Oregon

It may feel like the end of the trail, somedays…but don’t take me too literally. My final scheduled book reading and signing of My Music Man will be at the End of the Oregon Trail Interpretive and Visitor Information Center on Saturday, March 2, 2019 at noon. 

I’ll be serving chocolate chip cookies. Want to know why? It would have been Dad’s 89th birthday. And this…

TWO MONTHS AFTER Dad’s death and just a few weeks after his memorial service on the steamer Portland, Russ and I caught an airplane for a long-before planned trip to Ireland. It had been so hard for me to get excited for this trip after Dad died—even though visiting Ireland had been on my bucket list for a long time. A week before leaving I baked chocolate chip cookies for our good friend Kelly to thank him for filming Dad’s service. I felt so much responsibility to stick around for Mom in Dad’s absence.

As I mixed eggs and assorted ingredients, I kept asking myself how I could possibly leave on vacation. Suddenly—alone in the kitchen—I began crying. I felt Dad say to me, “Deeder, your mother will be fine. You have done so much. You need to go.” I laughed and cried—of course! I hadn’t been able to figure out why I hadn’t yet dreamed about Dad, but certainly, I should have known! Chocolate chip cookies would bring Dad back to me! (We always teased Dad that he was a lot like our dog, Oscar, when food was involved.) I felt comforted that the trip would work out okay.

The Writing of this Book
My Music Man

Oregon City was founded in 1842, and not long after was named as the First Territorial Capitol of Oregon. Although my great great great grandparents, Chloe Clarke and William Willson, lived there as early as 1842, it was within a few years when emigrants began to arrive here at the end of our famed Oregon Trail, looking to establish land claims in this region. If you’ve never visited this End of the Trail Interpretive Center, reserve some time before or after my talk to learn more. CORRECTION: You must pay admission to the Center to attend my talk. Admission for viewing the Center’s offerings ranges from $9-$13. Learn more about the End of the Oregon Trail Historic Oregon City and the Oregon Trail.

And if you are somewhere across the country or world, and can’t join me, but would like to learn a bit more about Chloe and William, my talk last week on Oregon’s Birthday at our Capitol has been recorded and can be accessed here. I thank the Oregon Capitol Foundation Speaker Series.

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