Chernela Mount New Year's letter Jan. 1, 2007

We wish you all a happy new year.

Dear Friends and Family,
In the spirit of the New Year letter, we report our comings and goings.  We recall with special pleasure our spring trip to the Pacific Northwest where Janet attended the meetings of the Applied Anthropology society (SfAA) in Vancouver.   Fortunately, our spring break coincided with these meetings, allowing us to visit relatives and to take a hiking trip on Vancouver Island.  Although we are admirers of rain forests, we had never visited a temperate one.  We were disappointed at  the extensive deforestation, but, even so, we found the remaining forest islands to be truly magical.  We hiked the rugged Pacific Rim trail and discovered a small but ancient stand of old growth cedars and Douglas fir, known as Cathedral Grove, not far from Port Alberni.  We hope you can experience a glimpse of these very magical sites in our photos (on Flickr: Pacific Rim Trail and " Cathedral Grove ").   We were also moved by a memorial visit to the area where our friend Susan Golla conducted fieldwork among the Nuu-Chah-Nulth (Nootka) in the late 1970s. Once in the city we spent many enjoyable hours with the Vancouver branch of the Mount family --  cousins Jeff and Brian and their families Cathy, Maya, and Greg.  We look forward to the next reunion.  Janet's meeting went well and she was pleased to be invited to join the new Human Rights Committee of the SfAA.   Steve had an especially productive writing year .  While he was busy working, Janet took a nearby jaunt  to Bird-in-Hand, PA, with our long-time friend Sheila Dauer. In retrospect, no one is sure why they opted for the "Amish Country Farm Tour"  with its visit to a winery.  Once free of the tour, Sheila and Janet visited an animal auction where, in shirtsleeves and tipped hats, elderly Amish bellowed auctioneering riffs while bidders vied for horses, mules, and ponies.   Once Steve's deadline were past, we took a  trip to Asheville and surrounding areas in North Carolina.  There, unlike the Pacific Northwest, we were surprised by the vast amount of protected forest in a state with recent population growth.  We stayed in Black Mountain, where Steve had a Go tournament.   Steve's Go tournament ( photo ) made international news when the laptop on which the move-recorder was working exploded.  (The following day Dell announced a battery recall.)   We enjoyed discovering Black Mountain and its impressive history, including Black Mountain College, a short-lived arts college/colony/experiment that involved (among other participants) Ben Shahn, Merce Cunningham, Martha Graham, Robert Rauschenberg, John Cage, Willem and Elaine de Kooning.  Today Black Mountain is a summer camp, and we slipped in momentarily to get a glimpse of the original Bahaus studio buildings.   In Asheville we visited a number of wonderful spots, including the North Carolina Arboretum designed by Frederick Law Olmstead.  That extraodinary landscape includes an area of absolute preservation as well as several formal gardens, including Olmstead's  tribute to Appalachia, "The Quilt Garden" ( photo ).   Now we're back on track, working from one due date to another, and enjoying time with friends and sights between.

                       We wish you much happiness in 2007!  
                                Janet and Steve

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