Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Old Postcard Wednesday--Mount St. Helens and Spirit Lake

Mount St. Helens with its companion Spirit Lake began the day thirty years ago yesterday looking as they do in this old postcard (except this is an autumn scene, and May 18, 1980, was a Springtime morning). Everyone who lived in the Pacific Northwest at the time and who was old enough to understand the event remembers the eruption that changed the mountain forever. I too remember that day well. The night before, I met this man for the first time and on that Sunday morning he and I were asleep on my futon. The phone rang insistently enough to force me out of bed and into the kitchen to answer it, and on the other end of the line was my mother yelling: THE MOUNTAIN BLEW! Later this week I will post shots from the eventful private plane tour of Mount St. Helens that he and I arranged for my mother's 65th birthday in September of that year.

The mountain and I have quite a history beyond the above powerful memories of a former love and my expression of birthday love for my mother. In 1994 my husband (who wasn't my husband then; in fact, he was married to someone else) and I were both members of the office hiking club. He coordinated a hike to the top of Mount St. Helens, and oh what a climb it was! By the time we all descended safely I was unsafely in love. But that is an explosive story I am not not likely to write about here.

A bit about this gripping and unforgettable video (4:58)    Full text here:
Dave Crockett has been to a place that most of us can't even imagine. 
He has been to hell on Earth and back again.
For weeks in the spring of 1980, Mount St. Helens had rumbled and burped, and KOMO News crews, including Crockett, were at the mountain covering the story. But when KOMO decided to pull their crews from the mountain and let their sister station in Portland handle it, Dave was angry. On May 18 he woke up at 3 a.m. afraid he would miss out on the story of a lifetime, and he knew he had to go."Just call it a hunch," he said. "I just had a feeling something was going to happen down there."When he got there, the side of the mountain collapsed and the massive eruption began.  . . .

Tree stump is shown in front

**FOR USE AS DESIRED WITH MOUNT ST. HELENS ANNIVERSARY** In this May 7, 2010 photo, a tree stump is shown in front of Mount St. Helens, in Washington state. The volcano erupted violently 30 years ago on May 18, 1980. Read more ..The Future of Mount St. Helens 30 Years Later»
(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)



the watercats said...

I've loved reading this! and that fella who filmed the eruption.. what a special, peaceful aura he emits... just stunning!

Lydia said...

the watercats~ That makes me happy for you to enjoy the post so much and to mention the photographer's aura. You are right! I noticed something special but didn't think it through the way you did.

Owen said...

What an incredible piece you've put together here... love of volcanoes paired with volcanic love... !

Too bad we won't get the full story, would be good reading, I'm sure...

Love the postcard, "Especially charming under..." A little less charming under millions of tons of mud and ash and logjams of downed trees... But such are nature's ways... There was a good story in this month's National Geographic about how the area is already making a comeback.

Owen said...

PS the video really is amazing, unbelievable he was able to hike out from under the black cloud descending on him.

And we get a pizza ad to start off with, to whet our appetites as it were...

Kittie Howard said...

Thank you for posting this amazing video. I hadn't seen it in its entirety before. I felt like I was in a surreal moment, such a powerful moment it doesn't seem like 30 years ago. And Crockett has such a serenity!

naomi dagen bloom said...

Lydia, The link to the post about Michael took me to a place before we became acquainted in this space. Once again you amaze me with your candor and strength and humanity.

Amy said...

Wow, Lydia, it's hard to believe it's been 30 years. My youngest was just a few months old then.

I read your post about the man you met just before the eruption. I was very moved by the story - it took me back to a day in the early 90's when I learned of the death of my first love. We'd lived together for 5 years when I was in my early 20's so I hadn't seen him for 17 years. But, still, the grief was real. Against the wishes of my husband I decided to attend his memorial and it was the best thing I could have done. His son was there (the same age as my oldest) and it was so comforting to know that this wonderful human being would live on in a sense. My husband got over his anger and jealousy - we actually separated that same year and "remarried" 4 months later. Sometimes loss and grief can cause a positive shift.

You write very well - thanks for such an interesting and informative post.

Erika C. said...

I love your post card .So beautiful. I read about your friend's death on Melinda's blog. My thoughts are with you.


Kim said...

I can't wait to see the pics of your tour later this week.

Phivos Nicolaides said...

Amazing photos and wonderful text! Hugs.

Lydia said...

Owen~ I bought the issue of National Geographic you mentioned--excellent.
Got a kick out of your comments. :)

Kittie~ Yes, those thirty years went by fast. It really was interesting to see the film in its entirety and to get to know the photographer behind those iconic scenes.

naomi~ Oh, that is so kind of you to say to me. Thank you for reading the other post.

Amy~ So your youngest has this claim to fame of sorts; how fun.
The similarities of our stories is so interesting. I love the part about you and your husband growing through that time.

Erika~ Thank you for coming to my blog after reading comments at Melinda's. I'm glad you liked this postcard.

Kim~ Good! I won't have them ready to post on Thursday I don't think. Friday is my target. :)

Phivos~ Glad to have you here and pleased you enjoyed the post. :)

Magdalena said...

Hi Lydia...
incredible is our mother nature...beautiful post!

thank you for your visit and kind words at color sepia...



Lydia said...

Magdalena~ Thank you for being here and commenting so kindly! It is always a pleasure seeing your work at color sepia. :)

earthtoholly said...

Wow, amazing story by another adventurer named Dave Crockett!
"...the out of doors has always been my church..." Amen to that.

How nice to have such a vivid connection to one of nature's spectacular events, Lydia. Thanks for sharing the video and your personal story.

ValGalArt said...

amazing post! my mom lives in Bellevue so i happen to remember alot of this! So nice to hear from you and i hope you are so well ;)
i always love your postcards :D

Lydia said...

earthtoholly~ You know, I had absolutely not connected Dave Crockett with Davey Crockett! :) That's cool that you did!

ValGalArt~ I was in Bellevue once for a seminar.....pretty place. Thanks for the visit, Val. xo



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