Life in Portland Area

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As I was just finishing unpacking and had so many other things goinog on, I decided not to make any ambitious plans for Thanksgiving weekend. Instead I stayed in town and spent the afternoon at Bruce's place (from Active Moving, he was the warehouse manager). He lives in a trailer(s) in Gresham, OR, but it certainly is not your typical trailer as you can see. Bruce's Trailers in Gresham, OR.
While the exterior of Bruce's trailers look very nice (with a sense of permanence from the landscaping and such), Bruce has completely redone the interior so that it is extremely comfortable. Do you notice his American Indian art theme. He does have an eye for decorating. Bruce's Living Room.
There were 17 people at Bruce's for their Thanksgiving get together. Everyone helped out. I brought celery and carrot sticks as well as a Sara Lee cherry pie. However, other people brought home assembled apple and pumpkin pies which were quite yummy. Here is Bruce's daughter, Shania, looking for the napkins. She is so cute. Shania.
Bruce's most recent project was to replace the kitchen cabinets which he just finished the evening before. This picture has Bruce, his mom, and Katie (Bruce's long time friend). Bruce, his mom, and Katie.
Here is the dining area. The kids (mostly older teens) ate at the smaller table beyond the kitchen. Several of the adults ate at the dining table shown here. Bruce, myself and a few others sat in the living room to eat. Everything was very good. Bruce's Dining Room.
I went to the Dollar Tree store just a couple of blocks away and got a little two foot artificial tree. With some lights and decorations I had from previous Christmases it added a little Christmas cheer to my apartment. I also got a decorative stocking which I hung elsewhere (it is on the right on this picture, but not very well displayed. .
On December 10, 2004 I had a hearing in front of the Superior Court, Judge Barbara Johnson. They are really quite informal in their hearings in Washington. In the District Court they don't even take testimony (no one is under oath) for Domestic Violence cases. In the Superior Court in civil matters they will take testimony, but all parties stand behind a tall table (not shown here as best I can tell). There is no real ability to cross examine witnesses and no real control on who speaks so it seemed a little like a shouting match to me. I prefer New York procedures where the take testimony even in Small Claims Courts and each party is formally given the ability to object and cross examine.... Clark County Superior Court Room.
My Motions for Revision were denied as they weren't filed within ten days after the decision, but I filed a Notice of Appeal that same day (you have thirty days to file Notice of Appeals and it was day 29). Whew! Here is the Superior Court Clerks Office where my Notice of Appeal was filed. It is such a relief to get out of the District and Superior Court environment. From my review of the rules of the Court of Appeals, things appear to be much more thorough and decided on the papers in general. That is more comfortable to me as, in New York, most matters are decided on the papers only. Clark County Superior Court Clerk.
So I was back to Clark County Development Center to make copies of my Notice of Appeal at this Konica (only 25 cents a copy versus one dollar at the clerk's office). I am pretty sure that I delivered this copier from Konica about nine months ago when I worked for Active Moving, so it was nice to use this old friend. I think I understand what the main confusing issue was for me. In Washington the statutes say that District Courts can't issue Orders of Protection in cases where there is a shared residence, which would be about a third of all cases by my guess. However, the Superior Court doesn't want to be bothered with all these cases (they are generally messy as with most domestic disputes). So they seem to have appointed all the District Court judges as Commissioners of the Superior Court which really stretches the powers of Commissioners. Clark County Development Center Copier.
The statute listing powers for Superior Court Commissioners doesn't list anything other than issuing temporary orders. However, there was a court case STATE v. KARAS which cited the Washington state constitution where more general powers are given to the Commisioners. The kicker is that the constitution restricts each county to at most three Commissioners, but our county has eight. The Court of Appeals will have to sort that out. Also, the 'Commissioners' are never identified as such (everyone calls them District Court Judges, so it is also a question of whether there is appropriate due process, etc.. Here is the District Court room where Karyn's order was 'heard' but no testimony was taken. It is my understanding that if the witnesses aren't under oath, it is not really evidence, so how can they decide matters based on no evidence? The proceedings were recorded by the camera on the ceiling just to the right in the picture. I may see if I can put a very short excerpt for your review (nothing dramatic, just to give you sense of the quality of the recording). Clark County District Court Room.
This is District Court Number 6 where all the people who applied for Orders of Protection sat and waited for over two hours until a clerk (it seemed) handed out the Orders. Mine was denied, but wasn't signed which is why I am pursuing getting a signed decision from Judge Johnson to lock up the jurisdiction of the appeal (if the unsigned decision was not final, then her order would be). Of course it also raises jurisdictional questions for the decision itself as it can't be determined from the record who actually made the decision and whether they had jurisdction to do so. Clark County District Court Room 6.
Friday evening December 17 was eventful in that Karyn and Alex showed up at Mandarin House Restaurant and I left promptly (only enough eye contact to recognize her and then got my stuff and paid the check and left). It went smoothly. Too bad she hadn't figured that out before. Anyway, I went to Syda Yoga about three minutes earlier than planned as I was to be the Audio/Visual Person. Here is where I sat. I ran the lights (to my right along the wall) and played/swapped the CD's using the mixer, etc.. Syda Yoga Audio/Visual equipment.
Here is my view of the hall. There are pictures of the hall before it was set up as well as while we were painting. The men normally sit in the chairs along the right while the women sit in the cahirs to the left. When I do A/V I get my own private space. Portland Syda Yoga Center Hall.
Here is the reception area outside the hall as decorated for Christmas and with a view of the kitchen reflected in the windows. New Year's eve was Friday evening and so the program lasted until midnight. I helped with the A/V. It was great. I was able to welcome the New Year chanting. So, instead of dreaming of happy chanters (and safe drivers, of course), as we are on the west coast I was chanting to happy dreamers (and safe drivers as always). If that doesn't make much sense to you, you can see an old dialogue about my new year's traditions. Portland Syda Yoga Center Reception Area.
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This page was last updated on October 28, 2007.