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Letters 8/31-9/7 

Last week was the last Mt. Bachelor gravity race of the season and it finished with a bang! This unknown rider flies over the last drop to the finish. Photo by Trevor Lyden, follow him on Instagram @trevorlyden. Tag the @sourceweekly in your action shots for a chance to be featured in Lightmeter.

Last week was the last Mt. Bachelor gravity race of the season and it finished with a bang! This unknown rider flies over the last drop to the finish. Photo by Trevor Lyden, follow him on Instagram @trevorlyden. Tag the @sourceweekly in your action shots for a chance to be featured in Lightmeter.

Deschutes River Alliance Fires Back

In your Aug. 24 article, "In Search Of a Cooler River," Portland General Electric spokesperson Steve Corson states, "They (the Deschutes River Alliance) want to go back to the status quo prior to the selective water withdrawal system, and essentially to abandon the reintroduction effort for salmon and steelhead above the dams." This statement is inaccurate and misleading. The DRA has regularly asserted our support for fish reintroduction—on our blog, at public events, and in various publicly disseminated documents.

However, the DRA believes that fish reintroduction efforts shouldn't result in violations of the Clean Water Act. Further, these efforts shouldn't come at the expense of the ecology of the lower Deschutes River and tributaries above the Pelton-Round Butte Dam Complex.

In short, we are supportive of fish reintroduction that is successful, that complies with the law, and that protects the ecology of the Deschutes River ecosystem. The Selective Water Withdrawal facility is failing on each of these counts.

—Jonah Sandford, Executive Director, Deschutes River Alliance

Parking on West Side

Please look for NO Parking signs when parking your car on the west side near Galveston Street. The yellow curbs are deteriorated and guess the city can not afford to update the yellow paint. It makes it very difficult for locals to get down the street to their homes. Just asking for a little respect and consideration.

—Kathy Colombo

In Praise of Great Men

On Friday, Aug. 12 around 3:30 pm visitors were enjoying the patio at a vacation rental on 12th Street in Bend between Galveston and Hartford. Pine cones started coming down and as they looked up a huge pine tree branch as big as a tree came down with a huge crash in the backyard of the neighbor. They ran and one woman hurt her knee and had to go to the hospital but is apparently fine now.

I live next door to where the branch came down. The groan of the branch wrenching free, two loud explosions, lights flashing; (it seemed like they were both inside and out of my house), sparking, and when I saw the four thick power lines come down outside my window facing the Hartford Alley I finally understood what was going on. I thought my house might explode and threw on a dress hanging nearby, grabbed my sunglasses, my cell phone and a hat and bolted through the gates between my landlord and me onto Hartford. I was NOT going to open my gate and face those lines! No purse, no money, no reading glasses, no shawl, no bra, no tincture! I walked around the block in a daze until I saw the branch lying across the owner's backyard, some bushes, the alley and onto a small open garage. One of the two closest power poles had a small fire on top.

I was frightened but not freaked out. The reaction came later that night and the following days, when I was lethargic and spacey; my adrenals depleted. However, I was so shocked I temporarily forgot my cat who was sleeping on my bed and was by now probably under the bed.

Immediately there were sirens and our trusty Fire, Police and Power companies were there in force very quickly. I was told NOT to go into my house, which was obviously good advice I was definitely going to follow.

What was so heart-warming during this ordeal was the concern from neighbors and Fire, Police and Power. The owner of Paradise Produce was the first to call me, although he had lots of valuable produce with no cooling. I walked over to his place which is very close to mine and he gave me $10, unasked, to go have a drink. A neighbor offered that I could stay at his house during the very hot afternoon. A girlfriend living several streets away heard the noise and biked over to check on me. My landlord next door was also very solicitous. My kids were off camping and not within telephone reach, otherwise they would have helped also.

Over the following days I gradually got more and more of the utilities to work. I kept button-holing the various workers in the alley for advice, even dragging some into my house to ask, "Why is this not working?" There were several complications, such as blown surge protectors. On Monday I was told that I should have TV and Internet, but no. Going down the list of things that could be off on the phone with the ever polite and patient people at Bend Broadband, it now seems that one of the black boxes (the modem?) below the TV (I don't speak electronese) was fried during the explosive event, and the surge protector died, protecting the TV. I was told by an electrician that it's a very good idea to sniff any appliances for the smell of burnt "electricity" and to throw them out after they've been through something like this, even if they still work. He said that there could be some unseen damage inside them. Some of them had telltale small black smudges on them.

All the workers I contacted were extremely polite, patient and caring; lots of them offering me ice cold water bottles from their trucks as I wandered around in the heat, looking for shade and answers. I don't drink much but I desperately needed a strong drink to calm my nerves. I finally ended up at the Westside Bar, and boy, are their drinks strong! I had a tall glass of gin and tonic and could only finish half of it.

After 2 hours I was finally allowed to go home. The power lines were still down a few feet from my fence.

My cat was fine; happy to see me.

All night there was activity; lots of trucks, floodlit guys swinging in baskets hanging from those long "arms." It was a strange, unreal and dramatic scene. These guys work so hard! They are the Salt of the Earth!

It's a miracle that nobody was seriously hurt and that there was very little property damage. It could have been so much, much worse.

—Berit Carlsen

Hey Berit – Sounds like quite an ordeal. Come down to the Source office and get your $5 gift card for Palate, where you can get yet another strong drink—of hot espresso, that is. -Nicole Vulcan, Editor

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