The cruising season will be soon upon us in earnest. Our current plan will be to make our way North to the San Juan Islands and continue our explorations up there. Our itinerary is rather loose and will begin with the circumnavigation of Lopez Island sampling the many anchorages that surround that part of the archipelago. Driftwood beaches, wooded trails and riding our bikes along the meandering 2 lane roads that weave through the farmland of the interior will be our exercise both for the body and mind. After that, it will depend on the weather, which way the wind is blowing and how crowded it gets. The Canadian border is still closed so the concentration of boats in the San Juans is higher than normal.
When the anchorages start to fill up in the summer we will return to Port Ludlow for a refit of food and water and then make our way to the skinny waters of the Southern Salish sea East of Ketron, Anderson and McNeil Islands.
Over the past several weeks we’ve been busily bringing Great Northern back into cruising fitness. We have new Lazy Boy recliners in the salon. After all, GN is not a sailboat. We recently took the carpet off the back deck and power-washed it on the dock. What a chore! The pantry is being topped off. The wine locker is filling. We re-positioned the skiff on the flybridge so it is now facing fore and aft to make it easier and safer to launch, retrieve and secure. It also has new numbers, a chart plotter with depth, and we lengthened the cover of the old skiff to fit and it is now protected from the rain, the sun, and seagull bombing runs. Nearly there. We only have a few more things to do: Figure out bike storage on the flybridge, make a final trip to storage to retrieve the paddleboards and the flybridge cushions, and finalize food / booze acquisitions.
In my spare time I’ve been playing with words. It is something that I enjoy doing and I thought I’d share my latest invention. When I started this latest poetic project the spring weather still exhibited a wintry component. We had experienced a series of storms, the last being quite belligerent with winds to 55 knots registering on the freak-O-meter. I included sustained, driving rain. I read Les an early draft and she commented that it was quite dark and depressing. Well… it was and perhaps I was… being subjected to the rigors of early spring weather in the Northwest.
Then we had a patch of sun with temps hovering just below 70 degrees. In the Northwest there is a saying. If you don’t like the weather, wait fifteen minutes, it will change. This morning there is a fog shrouding the view out of our starboard windows. It is dense and still, but slowly dispersing. I can now see a tiny bit of definition where there was once a blank gray palate. Les and I have decided that we like the winters up here. Yes it is cold and damp. But the views are magnificent and when the sun does break through the clouds it is glorious in a way that the continual sun of Southern California can’t match.
Time for a morning walk. Hope you enjoy reading my latest word-fest which follows…
Cold Wet Windy Grey Mist
A lingering meander Traversing a beach Cobbles, gravel, and The skeletons of trees Blocking the casual
An ancient carcass Home to moss And others A Backrest For the creature Sealed in wondrous Weather shedding polymer Legs splayed out
Deadpan stare over open water Leaden wavelets Tap the beach Never more Never less Filled with ease
Mists flow inward And through the edges Sight bemused by distance Restrained by inner fog Bound by illusion
Sun bleached driftwood surround Totems of the past Plucked from the soil Carried by the currents Stranded by the tides
Diving birds Fly through the water And the air And disappear Only to return
Stands of evergreen Prick the horizon And the imagination Whispering to other sentinels Framing the sky
Flotsam Floats Past Always moving Prisoners Of the tide and current
Deadpan stare over open water Releasing its grasp Giving way To Calm Serenity And Belonging