Thursday, July 4, 2013

In Dustin's own words, July 2005

A day in the life of Dustin, July 2005, in his own words, plus some photos of him taken 7/4/2011:

“I took a grueling bike ride to Beacon Rock State Park yesterday, hiking four miles to the top of Hamilton Mountain then down again for the ride back.
Beacon Rock from Hamilton Mt 8/12/12 (Anniversary Hike)
The route consists mainly of level ground from here [Vancouver] to Washougal then proceeds over a series of smaller hills as it approaches the [Columbia River] Gorge. The most arduous part of the trip is about 1/3 of the way into it when the road winds up into the mountains. The river, recently so near, is now hundreds of feet below. Eventually after reaching the end of the this climb, I enjoyed a long coast back down the other side of the mountain, though the knowledge that I would be obliged to climb back up again made it quite bittersweet.

“As usual, the Hamilton Mountain hike was awesome. I was, initially, slow-moving, being worn out from the ride but, just as the going got really tough, the Gatorade and two corn dogs I bought from a mini-mart kicked in, giving me a second wind.

Bonneville Dam from Hamilton Mt 8/12/12
“I don’t believe I’ve ever seen so many butterflies. One fluttered along in front of me for a good twenty-five yards…

“Upon reaching the summit, I beheld a panoramic view of the gorge adjacent to Bonneville Dam. I was a little dismayed by the smog level. I stood wondering how beautiful it might have been when none but the Indians lived in this land.”

He then continued with some thoughts about himself, in an ongoing attempt to boost his self-confidence and also to determine where he needed to make changes (per other journal entries):
Dustin 7/4/11, Mt Adams in background
“Things I like about myself:
“I am intelligent and contemplative, with a good command of English and an amount of knowledge not typical my age.
“I am thoughtful, with a desire to do good and see people happy.
 “I keep myself in good shape and hold myself to a high standard of fitness.
“I am good-looking in the face.

 “Things I dislike about myself:
“I am stern of countenance and appear unfriendly to people.
“I am reluctant to talk to girls for fear of rejection.
“I am irritable and sometimes temperamental.
“I allow myself to eat large amounts of food, compromising my fitness.”

I am so proud of my son and so happy that I had 28 years with him. 28 years to see him grow into such a caring and dedicated person, a man of high integrity who was true to himself. He is not only my motivation but my inspiration. He was not afraid to speak up for what he believed in and that is what I strive for as well. Because of him and my other children and husband, I hope to save lives by telling our story and sharing other devastating and preventable stories as well. "Drive safely" is not just another way to say "I love you."
Dustin with Bigfoot, near Mt St Helens 7/4/11

Dustin with 2 siblings, Logan and Jenna 7/4/11

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