The Painted Hills and Sheep Rock Unit (both in the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument) are exquisite. A perfectly timed brief mid-morning thundershower made the colors even more vibrant.
A Unique Find in John Day
In the town of John Day, we visited Kam Wah Chung State Heritage Site, a perfectly preserved 19th-century Chinese apothecary. The building also housed a general store, cookhouse, bunkhouse, and bootleg liquor/gambling enterprise.
Two 18-year-old Chinese immigrants bought, lived, and did business for more than 50 years in the ramshackle structure. One became a doctor renowned for his healing abilities. The other was a businessman with a generous, community-minded spirit. It was a tough life, but they ended up earning the respect and affection of the community.
A bear paw on the apothecary counter. A desiccated orange and sticks of incense on the family altar. A box of Wheaties in the kitchen next to a bottle of soy sauce. It’s a fascinating place, a slice of exotic history in a barren, remote locale.