A few surprises. I wonder why they read my blog?
Sunday, August 28, 2011
Friday, August 26, 2011
Great hike today with new friends, Susan (left) and Mary (right), both Sunland neighbors in Sequim. Mary drove us up to Hurricane Ridge to the Hurricane Ridge trail. The trail is approximately 5 miles with some healthy ascent. And the views from the top are 360 degrees of the Strait of Juan de Fuca and the Olympic Mountains. Wildflowers and sunshine abundant. Glorious.
Saw three marmots along the trail—about the size of a beaver. Usually quite shy; it was a treat to catch them out and about today. Susan got a great picture (right) of one of the marmots and another of bear grass along the trail. (Great photography, Susan!)
On our way home, we stopped by the Camaraderie winery in Port Angeles. Some of their grapes are from Chandler Reach, near Red Mountain at the far eastern end of the Yakima Valley which is, like, 2 miles from where Mike and I grew up and worked until May 2010. Seriously, it is a small, small world. This winery in Port Angeles has beautiful intimate gardens and sheltered sitting areas with gurgling water features. Very lush. Very peaceful. Susan was picking up wine here for a friend, so it was a quick look; but we will definitely be back.
Looking forward to many more happy trails.
Thursday, August 25, 2011
Why is a ride on the Harley such fun? There is such a thrill when you can feel the temperature changes through the forest (cool), along the ocean (cooler) and pastures (humid/warm). The smells this time of year are fantastic with ripe berries, fresh cut grass, and the mossy scent of the forest. And the devil-may-care attitude that goes with riding a bike.
The road between Highway 101 and Cape Flattery, Route 112, is challenging with many twists and roller coaster hills. The scenery is second to none with views across the Strait to Vancouver Island, Canada, and of course, Cape Flattery. The weather was certainly in our favor today, too.
Catching the views of turbulent ocean waves breaking on the cliffs of Cape Flattery is well worth the 2-hour trip from Sequim. Many mega-ships (oil tankers, cruise ships, large yachts) make their way past this point out into the open sea.
This is one of big reasons we decided to make Sequim our home. During the summer and fall months, Harley riding around the Olympic Peninsula is darn near unlimited with spectacular places to see. The mild temperatures make it comfortable to wear all the leathers (jacket, chaps, heavy boots). Love it.
Sunday, August 21, 2011
Saturday was play day. Enough setting up house for a while. Sequim has a respectable little farmers’ market on Saturday morning with a couple of produce stands, bakery goods (we bought a loaf of sour dough bread), craft vendors and some fun music. The day was absolutely gorgeous—not a cloud in sight and a comfortable 76 degrees.
The Garden Bistro restaurant is across the street from the market and we have been wanting to stop in for lunch for quite a while. All the seating is outdoors with a cute little picket fence outlining the eating area. Everything is made from scratch (including the bread) and it tastes really, really good. I had the hisbiscus cooler and the veggie panini (tomato, basil, havarti and honey) and Mike had probably the best Rueben sandwich ever.
One of the owners was serving and he was about as pleasant as they come. The restaurant was just established in February and seems to be doing well. Hope so, we plan to visit often.
Friday, August 12, 2011
There are few foggy mornings around our place. With only a short distance from the water of Puget Sound (maybe a quarter of a mile), we get a soft blanket of ocean fog. With it you can hear the low sad bass of the fog horn coming from the nearby Dungeness lighthouse. (Usually the low misty clouds burn off and we are back in the sun before mid-morning.)
The New Dungeness Lighthouse was the first lighthouse completed in Washington Territory. Originally, there were two full-time Keepers who lived in the Lighthouse. In 1976, the light and fog signal were automated and the Station was manned by a single Keeper. Due to budget cuts, in 1994 the U.S. Coast Guard withdrew its last Keeper. Plans were made to board up the building. However, the New Dungeness Light Station Association was organized in 1994 with the mission of protecting and preserving the Station with volunteers.
You can become a member/volunteer and have the unique opportunity to become Keeper and live the life of a Keeper for a week, being responsible for the operation of the Lighthouse in the same isolation as Keepers of the Nineteenth Century. Each week, up to six volunteer Keepers who have paid a weekly fee are transported to the Station. During the week, you perform minor maintenance and repairs to the buildings and mow, trim and water the lawn. You serve as tour guides providing historical information to visitors who have hiked the 5 miles at low tide or arrived in kayaks.
Not sure if this is our cup of tea, but it could be an interesting week in a historical setting and certainly with some of the best scenery of Puget Sound. When we start our kayaking trips next summer, this will definitely be a destination.
Monday, August 8, 2011
The house was ready on schedule and we received the keys on July 28th. Our project manager, Larry Loucks, was a joy to work with through the building process, and he met us at the house for turn-over with a big basket of goodies. All kinds of good stuff. We are very happy with Estes Builders including the quality of our home and their staff. A class act all the way.
For the last two weeks, we have been moving from the storage shed with a load or two every day (no more than that so we are able to break open boxes and put everything away), getting delivery of furniture and appliances, installation of television cable, hook-up of internet, set-up utilities, and propane fill-up. We still need to schedule movers for the remaining heavy furniture from the storage unit. Need to order window treatments soon…. A big load to the Goodwill and to the waste transfer station (no landfill here) will head out of the garage before this week is done.
The neighborhood is extremely friendly and we have been invited to dinner with golfing friends, Gene and Linda, in Sunland (our development), attended “John Denver” entertainment (Ted Vigil) and dinner at the Sunland Country Club, Pete and Kelley (long time friends who settled in Sequim 10 years ago) made it over for dinner in our new place, and we participated in a neighborhood progressive dinner. Fun and welcoming. And this was just our first two weeks here.
I will post before and after pictures of the house. And yes, we will be taking some day trips before summer is over. A Harley ride to Neah Bay, a visit to Victoria, Canada, the Olympic Music Festival, Quilcene Art Fair, the Port Townsend Wooden Boat regatta and hopefully the beach!