Pandemic: Road Trip Week 3

From the 15th floor of our home on Skinker Blvd. in Saint Louis we overlook JFK Forest of Forest Park. We can see a golf course to the north, the Chase Park Plaza, the Cathedral ,the Wheel, and the St. Louis Arch due east. The park is full of walkers, runners, bikers, skaters, golfers, Zoo attendees, History Museum buffs, Boat House guests and more. The noise of the city is evident by police and ambulance sirens, rap music blasting from passing traffic, loud motorcycles nightly and occasional screeching of brakes just prior to another car accident at the intersection.

From our Guemes Island cabin we hear nothing. Occasionally, we can hear a motor boat sound in the distance. We hear birds singing often but that pleasant sound goes on without much notice. We see sail boats, tug boats, huge oil tanker rigs, fisher men in boats of all sizes but most are two-man vessels.  We see a few people as they walk the beach. We see their dogs. We see the deer, porpoise and seals. But we hear quiet. Quiet has no sound. Silence is silence.

So, tell me again, why do I want to go home?

Our life is pretty much dictated by when we get off this island and when we get back on it.

This week Brian and I drove down south of Seattle to Tacoma where we picked up our grandson, Fisher, who lives in Portland, Oregon. His mother brings Fisher northbound on Highway 5 as we head southbound. The mid-point is Tacoma. It will be cool to hang out with Fisher, Amaya, Rumi, Teo, Sienna and Sebastian this week.

BTW. Fisher is sixteen. As you can see, he has grown quite a bit!

I got a surprise call from my friend and former colleague at Nine Network, Emily Height. She and her husband, Scott and their two boys are vacationing on Orca Island. They came  over on the Anacortes Ferry at 2:30 Wednesday afternoon. So, Sandy and I provided ice cream for six  which we all shared at the Anacortes Marina. Then, we sent Colson and Teddy home with a bag full of Jelly Beans. Emily is pregnant with a baby. girl due this fall. Congrats Scott and Emily!

For the fourth day this week we spend a few hours at the local skateboard park. It is not up to Portland, Oregon standards but it works in a pinch. Fisher is really good. It took him 40 plus tries to land a complicated landing but with tremendous persistence, effort and angst he finally landed it! Pretty awesome.  

Amaya has no interest in skateboarding but she loves her animals, plants, creative drawings and her friends especially Nut Brown and Bella Beautiful. And, she is quite the creative artist. Below we are designing oiur very own drinking cup.

For my friends Terry and Jo, living in Las Vegas and all of our friends and family living in St. Louis while you are enjoying temperatures exceeding 100 degrees we are turning on the heat for morning coffee and we need a sweatshirt and a fire for the evening on the beach.

Pandemic: Road Trip Week 2

From the cabin on Guemes Island this is our view of Cypress Island that welcomes us as we have morning coffee. This morning its overcast, low clouds, temp. in the 50’s.  Just west of Cypress is Blakely Island and Orcas Island. To our north is Sinclair Island and Lummi Island. Southwest of us is Lopez Island and San Juan Island. And, then further southwest is the Canadian borderline and Victoria of Vancouver Island. These are all islands worthy of exploring by boat and hikes. And, we have been fortunate to have visited most of these islands multiple times since we first start coming out this way because our children moved out here. With Brian, Kelly and Kerry all living here permanently with spouses and children (our grandkids) we will be traveling here for as long as we are in good health.

Monday, Emily had successful foot surgery in Seattle. We had Amaya for two days including a sleep over on Guemes. We had a great time until bedtime when Amaya missed her own bed and her mom and dad. So, she got comfortable only after crawling into bed between grandma and grandpa. It’s been a long time since I have had to sleep with a six-year old. They may kick you where it hurts. So. sleep facing away from the kicker.  

We leave the Island every day to help Emily. We pick up Amaya and visit Kerry and her kids or Kelly and her kids. This weekend we may hangout with all of the families for a meal or two.

Every evening we try to get back on the 4pm or 5pm ferry. So, we have time to sit on the porch enjoying the view as Sandy prepares another great meal. We have fresh garden salads almost every night because the garden salads come directly from one of the kids back yards. Each of the three have ample supply. The deer in this area usually drop by every evening around our dinner time so we have this special wildlife sight on the grounds as we search the sea for seal or porpoise. We have seen Orca whales in these parts in years past but nothing so exciting this time. Occasionally, we see an eagle or sea gulls but this year the wildlife viewing has been slim.


I have three  projects this week. The weed-whacking around the cabin was fun. The wall paper removal, not so much.  UGH. And, Kerry’s grass needs to be cut again. So, back on the tractor ;awn mower. We are about to enjoy a beautiful Sunday on Guemes. Hope you are having a great day too.


Pandemic: Road Trip Week 1

June 30-July 5

For those of you who have followed our five-day road trip you know we made it to Guemes Island by July 4th, as planned. If you followed each day you had to scroll down from the original document to find days 2-5.  Because I was writing new content and editing the original document each day there were times when the blog was published, unpublished and then published again. This was a bit confusing for some readers who let me know.

So, now that we are here for a few weeks I intend to publish new content weekly with a separate blog header which denote weekly updates. Therefore, less need for you to scroll.

To summarize the past week, I must report that we felt very safe throughout our travels. Every hotel was extra-ordinarily clean. The front desk people all wore masks and special protocols were in place to insist on six feet distance and ease of registration. There were no gathering places for people and limited seating arrangement. All buffets were closed offering some form of boxed take-out breakfast food. We ate at three outdoor restaurants even though we had planned not to do that. We felt safer in the outdoor eating establishments than we did in the Cheyenne, Wyoming grocery store.

We crawled into bed by 9:30pm last night and didn’t wake until after 8am. Sleeping in the cabin on Guemes Island after five days on the road was peaceful and restful. We had been rising at 6am and then hitting the road by 8am. So, apparently, our bodies needed a long night sleep  which has become unusual for both of us, especially Sandy.

Today, Sunday, we left Guemes by ferry at 11:30am. The ferry line was exceptionally long. We arrived to the ferry at 10:30am and found to our surprise that we were the 55th car in line. The 10:45am ferry took 21 cars. The 11:15 ferry took 20 cars. Thankfully, the ferry chose a double which means we got off the Island at 11:30 with another full load of 21 cars.

We picked up our granddaughter Amaya and said hello to Brian and Emily. Emily has been quarantined for few days prior to her foot surgery scheduled for Monday. We have Amaya for a few days which is an absolute delight. She is six years old going on sixteen. She is full of questions and answers. She is smart and beautiful. So much fun to be around.

We spent the day at Kerry’s farm hooking up with Sienna and Sebastian. The kids were fully occupied. I jumped on the riding mower and cut the grass, about two acres. This little job is one of my FUN activities that I look forward to every time we come out to visit. Sandy worked in the garden’s so she had FUN too.