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Monday, January 19, 2015

The Four Elements - Reno

I've been thinking about Reno now and then since Cory and I visited it back in the spring.  Why?  I can't get that Truckee sourdough bread out of my mind.  I haven't had a slice of bread to rival it since we left there.  Truckee Sourdough Company products can be found throughout Northern California and Nevada, in a wide variety of grocery stores and restaurants.  If you live in that region or are traveling through make sure to locate some and try it.  Oh, and pick up a loaf for me and pop it in the mail, would ya?

They've done a great job of supporting artists in Reno, and I even found a link that lists the location of some of the public art in the downtown area.  At the park across from the place we rented when Cory and I were there last year was a mural depicting the four elements.  It was painted in 1998 by Youth Artworks.

WIND- Something those of us in the upper Midwest are very familiar with!  Something we always seem to be battling at home and while we're on the road, wind has its uses, and I always enjoy seeing the big wind turbines along the highway and knowing that they provide clean energy.  No, they might not be gorgeous but they look a heck of a lot better than billboards...or nuclear power plants.

EARTH- All good things grow from the earth and we need to take good care of it.  I'm a big fan of recycling and it always breaks my heart when RV parks don't participate in a recycling plan because Wayne doesn't want to "drag garbage around" so it ends up in the garbage. Sometimes I think it's an area-wide issue and it's something I'm trying to remember to look into before I make reservations.  Besides recycling here is a list of 10 Things You Can Do to Help Save the Earth.

FIRE - It's interesting that the artist chose to use a Native American in this representation as in general they did not have the four elements as part of their folklore.  Of course fire has been important to all cultures for heat and cooking but Native Americans focused more on passing along fundamental cultural truths in their use of symbolism.  (Any inaccuracy in this statement is wholly mine and I take full responsibility for my ignorance if need be!)  On a personal note, I've been very interested lately in the effect fire has on our ecosystems and how staging controlled burns can improve wildlife habitat, control invasive plant species, and reduce wildfire potential by keeping forested areas cleared.  Less fuel for the fire means fires that are less intense and less likely to spread far.  Native Americans did use fire purposely to keep land clear for growing crops and to stimulate berry growth as well as to keep forests clear for easier hunting.  Cool fire mythology story link to "How the Coyote Stole Fire" here.

WATER - All I drink is water along with a daily cup of decaffeinated tea or the occasional Starbucks decaf soy mocha. Access to clean water is something we take for granted in this country.  I recently bought a Brita water jug for the refrigerator and always walk around with my own reusable Nathan water bottle as well.  Want to know more about how other countries' water quality fares?  Click here.

More hippie-esque ramblings another day, I suppose.  See other murals at Monday Mural.  More Yellowstone Flashback posts to come, just thought I'd mix it up with a mural since I haven't posted any in awhile.


  1. A neat addition to this basketball court. Tom The Backroads Traveller

  2. Bring on the hippie ramblings, I love them. Love the mural as well and thumbs up to how much better the wind turbines look than billboards or nuclear power plants. If we honored the 4 directions more often, perhaps we would be more mindful of how very important they are to our very lives. Earth,Air,Fire and Water. We're sunk without them all.

  3. Brilliant Mural love the detail in it

  4. We live across the state line a few miles in Nevada City, California, but love to visit (and even camp on the Truckee River) in Reno. Great bike/hike trail along the river, too. And the best news? Truckee Sourdough bread is available to us in our local stores. Yum Yum!

  5. I appreciated your discourse on each section; it helped me attend to the details. Looks like it's still in pretty good shape for its age. Thanks for contributing to this week's Monday Mural.