What Up, Pierce County?

I’ve posted my last “Today in Enumclaw” story as the temporary Local Editor of that site. Which means I can go back and work in Pierce County! WOO! (Well, I didn’t completely abandon PC this week. But I missed it a lot.) Being an LE meant spending three days in Enumclaw, a city I’d never been to before this summer, drinking coffee and iced tea in Mountain Aire Mercantile, getting yelled at by a cop just for taking a picture (although I’ll give him that the truck that crashed into the electrical pole would probably have killed me if I touched it), feeling awesome for posting a breaking news alert, spinning out content as fast as I could, procrastinating and staying up late just like in college (and getting up early), and analyzing the business landscape of the city. It also meant dealing with pinning stories on the site… not fun at all.

My favorite story was about a blueberry farm a ways outside of town. A couple started the farm a few years ago and has just opened it for picking. I made a video and wrote a story along with it. Dave let me try some of the blueberries – they were so good and fresh! Hopefully the birds don’t get to all of them – his wife, Sue, had to drive around the fields in a golf cart to scare them away. But I don’t blame them for wanting to eat the berries. It was a lovely morning visiting the farm.

I’ve also had to do a couple pieces on Enumclaw’s economic development. The city recently drafted a plan to help boost the local economy, which has suffered in recent years, and I wrote some “talker” pieces to get citizens to generate ideas about what to do. One woman, who used to own a local business on the main street, said that people are just opening the same kinds of shops over and over, so not everyone can find what they need in Enumclaw. I just hope that the comments people have given us on the site will be directed towards city management so they can consider it equally as I can. I have no clue what the answer is, anyway.

Lastly, on Thursday I stayed late to cover a meeting about this new non-profit for reducing bottled water use. I learned some shocking statistics about what the plastic used for the bottles does to the health of both people and animals. Did you know that it contains antimony and bromine? Uh, yuck! I think I’ll use my own water bottles from now on… But the upside of that experience was meeting two very active Patch users. Being an LE means connecting with your communities and knowing the people on some level, and that’s just what I did. I’ve made a bond with Enumclaw, and unfortunately I can’t stick to it as strongly as I did this week. Unless I come back someday to run the site for good… but let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves.

Besides working my tail off, since a week ago when I last blogged I went to Belfair twice to visit my aunt, uncle, cousin, and friends. It’s beautiful out there – their property is right on the Hood Canal and it’s easy to go swimming and catch crabs and oysters. They don’t actually live there but they spend time up there every year. My family and I have gone with them several times. This time it was just me, for those two days a week apart from each other. My cousin Laurel is 2.5 years older than me and we talk about just about everything, so it’s always great to catch up with her. Plus her boyfriend, Colin, was there too, and he’s going to Honduras for six months in September. He’s a friend of mine as well, and I was glad to catch him one last time. I don’t know when I’ll be back to Belfair next… hopefully next summer. And I had coffee with an old high school friend today. We joked around about the MIHS newspaper and all the fun times we had.

Well, I’ve got a book to finish and probably another crazy week ahead of Pierce County madness. I also have to order my textbooks at some point… which I don’t want to do. I want to delay school as long as possible. (I also want to stay 21 forever. I hate time. MAKE IT STOP!) But I need to get back to Decorah at some point, too. 

Cheers,

Brita

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