I traveled home to Michigan this month, leaving Portland early on a Saturday and touching down in the middle of a cornfield that afternoon. My dad was waiting at the gate, and he drove us the 90 minutes or so back home, where a mini family reunion of sorts was already underway. It was two such occasions I took part in during my week at home, so I got to see nearly all of my extended family.
As much as I anticipated the trip, my time at home felt easy and natural, rather than exhilarating. We watched the Olympics most nights, caught a local semi-pro baseball game and enjoyed time on Heart Lake — a place I missed dearly.
See more from my trip below.
These people are in love with the wild, and yet also caught in an unwinnable war with it—for $17 to $24 per hour. But they keep fighting so I can have the thing I love most: trails.
— Backpacker Magazine, on Olympic National Park trail builders
Narmin’s nightmares began almost as soon as she landed in the United States in December 2013. Eventually, to feel safer, she dragged her mattress into her parents’ bedroom and positioned it next to her mother’s side of the bed. A night owl, she often stayed up later than her parents, then sneaked into their darkened room to lie down. She kept her cellphone close, so if she needed consoling, she could silently text her boyfriend in Baghdad.
— The Baltimore Sun, on a high school that was home to immigrant students who speak a cumulative 24 languages
He had never aspired to be a cycling prodigy. Not really. He just loved riding. He had loved riding even before he got his first road bike, when he was eight years old.
— Bicycling Magazine, on cycling phenom Lachlan Morton
They reach the peak at 5:30 in the morning. They can stare for miles in any direction, but they aren’t here to admire nature’s beauty. They are here because of its power.
— The Seattle Times, on a death on the beautiful, dangerous Mount Rainier
‘‘Is there someone where you’re going who might hurt you?’’
‘‘Yes,’’ replied the farmer, removing his hat and rubbing his face with his hands. ‘‘But I have to risk it. I have nowhere else to go.’’
‘‘So you’re afraid to go there?’’
‘‘But you’re going there?’’
— The New York Times, on a Honduran deportee separated from his family in the United States
I read Anthony Doer’s “All The Light We Cannot See” this month. The novel won the Pulitzer Prize last year, so my heaps of praise mean little. I buzzed through my rented library ebook copy in less than a week. It’s a fantastic read about World War II, as seen through the eyes of a young German soldier and a blind French girl of approximately the same age.
You should listen to “The Arctic,” an episode of NPR’s “Embedded” podcast. A journalist reports from Greenland, examining why the country has the world’s highest suicide rate.
I recently reported about education activist Malala Yousafzai‘s visit to Portland and an arrest video that shows police wrestling a man to the ground, raising some questions, among them: Was the use of force necessary? And if so, why?
As always, thanks for reading.