Nice place to retire to. Scrubbed down the RV, dogs, and myself. Eating well from crock pot: mexi-chicken, pot roast, and tomorrow 3 bean chili with mole sauce (yum). Today will find a beach and a trail to walk, play guitar and drink beer.
Went on a joy ride up to Hansville with Don. Checked out Buck Lake, Skunk Bay and the Northern entrance to Hood Canal.
Nice place to retire to. Scrubbed down the RV, dogs, and myself. Eating well from crock pot: mexi-chicken, pot roast, and tomorrow 3 bean chili with mole sauce (yum). Today will find a beach and a trail to walk, play guitar and drink beer.
Found my way through Poulsbo right to Don Kott’s place in Suquamish Reservation. Met Don through Michael and his ex-wife Rimma. Don invited me to visit, camp out on his property for an undetermined time. The Ford 250 had plenty of power to pull RV up the grassy knoll to a spot under a tree that looked flat enough. I got her leveled and set up in half an hour. Dons’ modest house serves him well with its segmented areas. A nice art studio area for painting, drawing, and computer. Living room has a welcoming rustic cabin feeling. Pottery and art aplenty. A small and adequate kitchen dining room area, and two baths. The upper floor has a bedroom and full bath which he has offered as my guest bath. Don is a warm enthusiastic personality and his excitement is contagious.
He delivers one story after another in detail about his years of experience fishing, sailing, painting, wives, girlfriends, and hippie life in the 60-70s. He’s a great example to me at this time of how to move forward. Dons attitude is direct, amiable, and refreshing. Free spirited and generous. He gave me a copy of his memoirs entitled The Sea is for Sailing. His wall is covered with his illustrations of vessels which demonstrate his knowledge and passion for marine.
In the afternoon I met with friend David Harrison. He built an art studio at his mothers house on the north east side of Poulsbo. David and brother Dan are taking care of mother, Ann who is facing declining health. His new studio has 4 skylights, about 15’ x 20’, lots of storage around back and a place to work outside. The surrounding area ‘s well planted with shrubs and garden.
Met David while plein air painting from a bluff in Discovery Park over 20 years ago.
Over the years we’ve had many adventures centered on plein air painting.
David is an accomplished watercolorist. I’ve picked up some great tips from him over the years.
We’ve met on trips to Southwest America, Paris and Cinque Terra. We have many likes in common: French Impressionists, Fauvists, Jazz, Jethro Tull, watercolor, and free-thinking. We do disagree on politics so that is a touchy area! Ann pulled out a photo album. As we thumbed through I was getting a bit teary. There were pictures of us in Italy. Young, vibrant. David so handsome with his dark full head of hair. I was shocked at how good looking I was! Always thought I was fat and homely. Damn I shoulda worked it!!! Maybe not, I got into enough trouble as it was. That’s another blog. David is always respectful and kind. He genuinely likes people. I’m not so sure about people. I’ve invited him over to my camp to check out my rig.
This is the perfect place for the dogs since the yard is large and fenced. There are two friendly goats on one side. I carefully watch the dogs for aggressive signals and surprisingly they show mild interest. If those goats were dogs they’d be lunging to tear them apart. I need to find some local trails to walk dogs and walk my body.
Went with Don to do errands in his sporty red convertible. He made a reference to the old man/red sports car stereotype, shrugged it off with a hearty laugh. Very pleasant ride through Poulsbo and some history narrative from Don. Poulsbo oyster beds are gone due to pollution. Nordic fishing heritage is also gone now except for the tourist oriented branding. Poulsbo is now catching tourists instead of fish. Stopped into Bobland. Bobland is an intriguing creative expression created by Bob and friends in the seventies. It’s a meadow set in the forest with installations of deteriorating art pieces sprawling along an obscure pathway. There are mirror mosaic faces, giant concrete bones protruding from the earth, fertility symbols, tall stacks of abstract forms, fish forms, and more strange unrelated chaos for a mind to assimilate. Robin, caretaker and artist invited me to contribute to his “billboard” with a message or drawing. He has an installation onsite called “Extents”. Funny and thought provoking signs placed in the forest. One example says “Yikes, and Whew”. Don explained that the original intention of Bobland is that all the artworks would dissolve back into the earth. It appears to be on it’s way as there is a feeling of discovering a lost civilization. We got back to Dons place and I loaded up the crock pot for a fabulous pot roast dinner. We ate well and enjoyed a few glasses of red wine.
David stopped by for a visit to check out my rig. He met Don and enjoyed hearing Don’s fishin’ stories. Turns out David worked a few months on a boat “The Tempest” which at a different time Don captained. David commented on Dons’ book collection, pointing out the Beat writers. I realize that would be a perfect read for me now, so am going to revisit Jack Kerowac, Allan Ginsburg, Ken Kesey, and the rest of gang. Also available in the Don Kots library is Jack London. So many marine titles its mind boggling. This place is a treasure chest! Maybe this is a good time to start smoking. Its never too late to start smoking.
Walked with David over to Bobland and he was bubbling with boyish enthusiasm. David left wanting to know more about Bobland. Since he’s local maybe he’ll return for another dose . It’s about 10 pm so I read from Dons’ fascinating memoirs before hitting the sack.
Still planning to get the ladder and scrub down the RV as I didn't get that done today. Two months of dirt is starting to show.
Set up camp yesterday at Twanoh State Park on southeast side of Hoods Canal.
A popular place, arrived on a Sunday and it was 90 degrees. Beach was packed with families. Most were young families. Nice views of Olympics. Very windy and refreshing on a hot day. Clam digging is closed, oysters still harvestable.
JP loves the brook that babbles into Canal. I saw a sign about disturbing creek bed (spawning salmon) so I decide to let them romp in the breaking waves.
I enjoy strolling as it allows me to be in the moment. Not planning or rehashing. Just observing and ongoing dialog with immediate happenings. Mostly waves breaking, sea-gulls, dogs, puttering people. A boy pushing his baby brother in a small black stroller races by. Funny, cute, and dangerous! I look around for parents but none in sight.
Those boys were having pure fun! My parents would not have allowed that for a second!
Sun is going down so I head back to campsite #46T. It was a challenge backing the RV in earlier. It didn’t help with a guy with 2 dogs standing close by and watching. My dogs were going mad in back while I wrestled with the rig. Seeing I was having trouble, a nice man came over and spotted for me. I tried at least 5 times before getting RV positioned. A tight fit. The RV including the truck is 44’ (measured by Washington Ferry System).
Still, my backing up abilities are improving.
Ran out of dog food. The dogs are accustom to Kirkland brand (Costco) dry food and Evo canned food from Mud Bay. This will be an ongoing issue. I am chained to these brands! I had to make a 40 minute drive to Silverdale to get dog food. I could change brands with a transition period of mixing the old and new together. If one doesn’t do this there is a likely smelly disgusting repercussion.
Discovered my Runes and did a reading. Runes were spot on!!!
Think I’ll make a regular practice of consulting Runes to help focus on this ramblin’ journey. I hope to identify a new direction for my artwork to take.
A very thin Korean boy named Bailey came over to my site and befriended JP.
He likes to yap and ask too many questions. At first I’m happy to answer but realize this is not going to stop. I make an excuse and exit gracefully into RV. They are camped next site over. I hear him shouting to each person that comes within range, kid or adult. Bailey is a little ham. I have little desire to be social right now. This blog is my social involvement. I seek solitude as the sounds of nature are soothing as rose water to my urban anxiety. Looking forward to exploring the trail that follows the brook up the hillside with dogs.
We hiked up those trails. There were a few steep inclines and ledges which caused me some concern for JP. He has gone over ledges a few times. One time in Robe Valley where I thought he was a goner for sure! Took me over an hour to hike down and recover the little rubber dog. He bounced down a sheer cliff through thick brush, rocky clusters, and fallen logs.Thought I’d find a broken up dying pooch but instead found a dog whole and intact, an expression as if nothing happened. If that were a person he/she would most certainly be seriously wounded or dead.
I especially like the forest trails here. This park is beautiful but a bit too crowded with noisy campers (kids) for my liking.
Last three days have been absolutely soul cleansing. Dow Creek Campground is empty and I have the whole place to myself! So I extended one more day. Been playing my guitar and realizing why I didn’t follow a career in music. I love to compose a song like a loose sketch. It amuses me to create ideas in sound. Don’t know how to refine it and it when it starts being too much like work I get confused. So many options!!! I like it when its fun. Maybe I need to go with first takes and let it stand instead of trying to polish. Just play how it comes out and leave it at that.
So private here at campsite #49 during the week I’m walking around in my underwear! I have seen but three people in three days. Mosquitos a different story. Not as bad as Dosewallips where my legs were covered with itchy bites, but the little vampires keep me from sitting out too long. Wish they came out only at night.
Hiking trails has been our big activity. Took them to Lake Cushman yesterday. Hiked trails for three miles.
Thought of the old black and white picture given to me after my mom died in 1995. The picture of mom and her girl friend in a row boat laughing. She must have been 21 or 22. The picture says August ‘55, Lake Cushman in pen on the back. It is not my moms writing. She must have been pregnant at the time with me in her womb. The picture is one reason I wanted to visit Lake Cushman, 59 years later. I feel a bit emotional looking across this invitingly pristine scene. It must have looked a lot like this when my parents came here on a camping trip that summer of 1955. Memories of my mother flood my mind. She always carried lemon drop candies. She smoked many years and she died too early of breast cancer at age 64. She laughed a lot and was kind hearted. She believed in a higher being and she did astrological charts for her family and friends. She’d call when I lived in New York and let me know if the stars were agreeable or when Mercury was retrograde in my chart. She said she was republican. She really didn’t understand politics. It was because her father was republican that she called herself republican. She enjoyed playing golf. Mom would be very proud of me now. She always told me she was proud of me though I “march to a different drum” is how she put it.
She claimed to believe in unconditional love yet was quick with comments of approval or disapproval.
I think of the small family I had and most are passed on now. Started my new family with two dogs. They love me unconditionally. JP also loves the water. Can’t say he loves swimming because he’s in his own world. He doesn’t really swim. He paws at the water, digs mud or rocks (doesn’t matter whats on the bottom) splashes around in circles, and after about 5 minutes will belt out a yelp, like he’s treed a coon. Yelps continue every 10 seconds, at which point I pull him out. When in water JP doesn’t hear me no matter how loud I call. GG won’t go in the water on her own initiative so I’ve been tossing her in on hot days. Her reaction is not skiddish or of fear. I think she likes it. Shes a natural confident swimmer.
I’m getting more adept at the leash. Since I have two leashes tied to two units with independent noses. Leashes are always crossing and will be tangled if one doesn’t keep up with the weaving back and forth. Retractable leashes are great for one dog but when you have two there are management issues. Walking on trails with dogs is a very active experience. One must look ahead continuously and be ready for the right adjustment. Sometimes when there’s a sharp turn and a bush or tree if leash is extends further than 6 feet its going to rub or get caught. Rubbing is not good as it will wear down leash and thus need replacing. Tangling is not good because you have to stop walking flow. Should be an Olympic sport. Like every activity there seems to be an acquirable skill set necessary for enjoyment. I’d say you’ve advanced when you can hold both plastic handles in one hand and travel a dozen yards without an adjustment.
I’ve discover naps. An afternoon nap makes all the difference. Such a luxury and joy to wake up from a nap and feeling so refreshed. Seeing sharp detail in focus with new eyes. All I need now is a Lawrence Welk DVD to play during nap time.
Went to Lucky Dog casino last night, just a few miles south of Hoodsport. Lucky Dog doesn’t have Willy Wonka slot machines. Found a Wheel of Fortune clone game that was fun. When three magic symbols line up you get to spin a wheel 3 times for money. If you land on ADVANCE, you advance to next larger wheel with higher money amounts to win. There are 3 or 4 consecutive wheels until you arrive at the Mega wheel. That’s where jackpot goes to 125K. I got to spin for that JACKPOT five or six times. Exciting! I ended up winning a $430 jackpot. After checking wallet I came out +200. Not bad for 2 hours of fun. I can see how some people want faster results and play cards or other casino games. There is not a lot of interaction with other people when playing a machine. Is that why I like it? Lucky Dog food is good and beer is good. There aren’t many choices when one is hungry or looking for place to relax with a brew along Hoods Canal, west side. Guess everyone wants to be in nature.
These small towns along Hoods Canal are not what I expected. I thought there would be more modern facilities interspersed with a few relics. I’m surprised that most towns like Quilcene, Brinnon, Eldon, Potlatch, or Hoodsport are dilapidated and not so much in a charming way. These small towns typically have 2 restaurants serving burgers fish, shellfish or fries. Beer selection is sadly thin.
There is usually one small country store with an array of junk food to select.
Hoodsport has IGA which seems huge by comparison with other towns mentioned. IGA offers some fresh produce. I bought some salad makings and cherries, which brought yumminess relief.
Internet connection, wi-fi, and phone is somewhat unreliable depending on ones carrier.
I have Verizon and sometimes cannot connect. I use personal hotspot and works most of time at this location. Have had to increase data plan. Previous camp spots have had signal issues. I’ve come to not take any of these connections for granite and plan my internet time and location as part of routine.
Below is a clip from my jackpot win at Lucky Dog Casino.
Knew nothing about this place on Hoods Canal before coming here. Got a great site on the Dosewallips river. No problem backing RV in. No electric or sewer. This side of campground is best for privacy so count me lucky. Last spot available in entire Washington State Park system, according to rep.
Said hi to very friendly neighbors here with Yorkshire. Everyone I’ve met has been super friendly. Made a beeline for the river. JP loves water and I let him do his “I dig water” dance. GG watches on with indifference. We follow the river South. There are a few pools for JP to practice swimming. I gently throw GG in and she does well swimming back to me, seeming to appreciate the cool water without resentment. Soon trail becomes blocked with brush and logs. We head back to camp and I feed the hungry beasts. Shut them in and head to the only establishment around with a bar. It’s packed. Goeduck Restaurant and Lounge is the name of it. There’s one stool at the bar so I sit down. Order an Angry Orchard Cider and side of fries. Three old faces, two men and a woman are busy chatting but are curious about me. The older woman slurs her words and obviously intoxicated welcomes me. She notices my sketchbook and asks if I did the drawing. Yes, its my dog JP I say. She wants to know more about my dogs. I ask her about Brinnon and all three proceed to offer their own two cents. They talk about how they're featured on channel five Evening Magazine (google Goeduck Restaurant Lounge). Esquire magazine ranks it #163 best bars in the country. The three ambassadors of Brinnon tell me the clam and oyster digging is great but make sure you cook shellfish well. They mention Rocky Brook Waterfall, and the viewpoint at Mount Walker as must sees. A younger friend of theirs sits down and proceeds to talk about his friend who bought a fiberglas jeep. He was flabbergasted and went on and on about the fiberglas jeep. There’s no place to ground it.
Of course your going to have electrical problems he insists. A very handsome gent, salt of the earth type. I just sat in awe and listened. They were pleased to have an audience. Whenever they asked anything about me I changed the subject. They are much more interesting! Slept well and in morning took dogs up to Rocky Brook Falls, just a 3 mile drive up the mountain. The guys at the bar said it was at the 2 mile mark but its actually at the 3 mile mark! If I see them again I have something to raz them about.
Rocky Brook Falls are beautiful. Jetting water breaks into eight or ten streams that pass in and out of each other. I guess the flow is lower than normal but it gave a satisfying rush. Maybe its the electrons. I can never remember if they are positive or negative from a waterfall.
There were a few others arriving as we were leaving. I took a picture for a proud father so he could be in front of the waterfall with his family. He sounded Indian or Pakistani. From there I headed towards Quilcene to Mount Walker viewpoint. Then a four mile drive on a twisting gravelly dirt road. One false move and one goes tumbling off to certain death. That alone made the excursion thrilling. When we arrive at the summit South view panorama was spectacular. Misty fog was lifting and shifting. One could see the valley and Hoods Canal stretch out below, framed by rhododendrons and 100 year old Douglas Fir. Not visible are Seattle and Mount Rainier, which could be seen on a clear day. Drove around to see the North viewpoint and it was a blanket of fog. Nothing visible but a lovely opaque milky gray. I wanted to see Mt. Constance the third most prominant peak of the Olympics. I could see it from my neighborhood in Fremont so it’s a landmark for me. I’m surprised at all the campsites along Highway 101. Good to know. If you don’t get a reservation, don’t let that stop you! I count 8 campsites within the Quilcene/Brinnon area. Only two of them I could find listed. Theres only two little grocery stores. Think quick stop with camping gear.
I have two journeys going on. The outer journey; tangible, physical, planning course, supplies, battery power, dogs, etc. Journey to be self-reliant. Then there's the Inner Journey, understanding my artistic, intellectual self. No handles to grip. How do I handle that? Massage it. Clean it. Reveal it. Follow the path. I hope experiences along the way stimulate action. The inner journey is what I hope to nurture most. Hiking trails all day is terrific. Beer is delicious. Days meander by. I love the slow pace. Sweet birds and gentle breezes. Am I being guided? Sometimes it seems so. Perhaps one must believe there is something more in order to find something more. Can my imagination fleshed out enough for others to participate? I must trust that these are my own thoughts and not some programmed hype. Still have duties to perform as in urban life; about as minimal as possible unless one has a servant or two. No one to interrupt thoughts.
I’m stunned by over the top beauty of natural landscape on the Olympic Peninsula. I have already found in the past how copying a landscape from a photo is fun. Fun like making a puzzle is a challenge. It is impressive to a viewer who is not adept at copying a landscape and they immediately heap huge praise on an artist who produces a photo derived landscape painting. Ultimately, the natural scene cannot be surpassed by a painting or photo. There are artists out there who believe these praises and walk around all puffed up with their own falsified identification. On the other hand, Plein Air painting holds more promise. One paints an impression of the scene before him/her. That experience is rewarding to the artist as time and light are experienced as one. There is no time to render details, one must paint quickly and confidently as the light changes. The best plein air paintings in my opinion are fresh, untampered, and unrendered. The viewer can be moved by a plein air painting but often the image falls flat to the uneducated eye. The ignorant eye demands detail. The inner eye knows when a suggestion is well realized. When standing in front of nature in all its glory it’s hard to resist producing 'the inferior copy'. One must remind oneself, merely copying a scene will not extend reality. Copying nature will make the artist a mimic and offer nothing more to the world but inferior replicas. This is why I am called to develop my inner eye. I want to use creativity, not just as copyist. An artist has a chance to extend reality with expression.
Adult coloring books are very popular now. It is satisfying to mindlessly fill shapes with color. I would suggest to you artists who are copying photographs consider using coloring books as it accomplishes the same thing. On the other hand, its pretty easy to make a living copying photographs! Having said all that, I do love images. Even bad ones end up confirming assertions.
Took a nice hot shower in Coupeville marina, 6 minutes for $2. Stopped into Toby’s for Penn Cove Mussels and a beer. Back to camp and opened guitar case for first time in long while. Got it tuned and started strumming, trying to remember a song. A booming roar suddenly engulfed me. I thought the exploding sound alone would strip the top off the RV like a sardine can. The sound was way louder than a rock concert. I counted 18 jet passes within 30 minutes and quit counting. One jet after another for 2 hours. Put my guitar down and adjusted my brain to consider enjoying it as an event; a continuing Fourth of July Independence Day celebration. Hope my dogs hearing was not damaged or my own. Not all love and peace in the forest. Makes me understand how our jet practice in the sky and sonar practice in the oceans can harm wildlife. Still have a ringing in my head at noon next day.
Going to meet Jana at her studio. Maybe she’ll teach me her smoke rings song.
If I can get the jet ringing out of my ears! Last day in Rhodie State Park. Had a great conversation with a local named Bill. He mentioned there use to be a caretaker who lived on site at this campground. He camps in his van, very simply. Collects leaves for bouquets and sells them to florists for a little spending money. Rhodie State Park is right close to Naval airstrip he explained regarding the waves of sonic booms. Jana says this is controlled at Federal level. There is a campaign by locals to ban the jet runs.
Started out the day with text message saying ferry service to Port Townsend for day was cancelled. Bad news. Grabbed the map and began revising agenda. I could go North, back up through Deception Pass and ‘round Mountain Loop through North Cascades. I was about to take off on new course when I called Washington State Ferry info. Word up; ferry service just started again! No lineup and I could get in on the 2:45 instead of my reservation at 3:30. I ended up getting to Port Townsend an hour earlier than planned!
Fort Wardon State Park campground was full. Staying at nearby Jefferson County Fairgrounds. Grass area with full hookups. No privacy. Got a party of noisy girls next to me. Can turn up TV to not have to process their dumbass comments. They are here for horse riding event. JP is staring at me like he wants to walk. Need to find some trails around here to walk dogs. Theres an undeveloped lake I can check out. Do you have a blog to share with me?
This adventure is a mystery since I really don’t know when and where I’m going.
Today I’ll stroll through Port Townsend and take it in. Tonight I’ll check the map for next destination.
This would be a great place to live in the summer. From what I’ve gathered
winter can be worse here than midwest. Had a few drinks with a Townsend native who turns out to have grown up in Maple Valley, near where I grew up. Tried some of the smoothest whiskey ever; Basil Hayden's Kentucky Bourbon. I’ve made a reservation at Dosewallips State Park for four nights. Near Sequim Bay in Brinnon. I'll check if it's true what they say about Sequim rainfall.
It’s drizzling in Port Townsend today. May get my first experience packing up in rain. This campsite has filled overnight. I’m ready to roll west.
Need to start looking into boondocking. Camping in state parks is too expensive as an every night expense. If I can boondock for a week of every month I can bring that rent down. Remote solitude is something I need to experience more. I hope to accomplish this for 2 weeks at a time.
Arrived at Fort Ebey State Park about noon. Two young deer were at turnoff point so I stopped and snapped a quick one. Found site #50 and backed in without too much trouble. No hookups at this site. Got setup pretty fast. One leveler required on the side. Made lunch and took dogs for long walk down a trail to defunct gunnery. Fort Ebey was part of a defense system to protect Puget Sound from invaders. The guns dismounted in the year of my birth, 1956. Walking along such a historical site makes one feel like walking on eggshells. I felt that way again, being so high on a ledge balancing on a craggy path 2 foot wide. Hanging on to leashed dogs pulling me this way and that is a bit uneasy feeling. This cliff must be 80-100 feet above the water. Signs say: Falling can cause death. oh really?
Trail looped around to a great group campsite. Perfect for gathering of 20-30 people. Got a bit lost but consulted GPS. Found the right path back called Kettle Trail.
Ate dinner at Toby’s in Coupeville. Most of the town was shut for the day. Had the mushroom burger and it was great. Service was good. The waitress radiated a genuine smile I thought I knew her. There was some cool money origami pinned on the wall. My fave was the dollar bill dress shirt. It was short sleeved and had a collar.The pin-wheel dollar bill was cool too. Not impressed by their own brew, but I drank 2 of them anyway. June weather has been so good (one of the sunniest ever) that I’m in no hurry to head south or east. Think I’ll linger around Washington for another month.
There’s an owl hooting thru the forest as I begin drinking my morning coffee.
Owl hoot sounds like a soft bamboo flute with 2 distinct hoo hoos, a slight pause, then a third hoo. Repeated over and over sounds like a pop song.
We’ll be spending the 3rd and 4th of July in Freeland, how appropriate. Independence Day. My mind takes off on the meaning of independence. Not beholden to any other country or person. Free to make ones own decisions. That is a concept close to home. Self reliance is a positive responsible characteristic for an individual and a country but I believe we are all interconnected. Independence as a country is something we can collectively celebrate. The truth is, we are dependent upon each other. A related question is What does personal independence mean? This is the question I’m struggling with. Today I’m taking dogs to Podilla Lake and after a drive thru Whidbey Islands Prairie, which is actually rich farmland sprinkled with barns.
A pack of young girls on bicycles glide by. One bossy girl yells out several times “we have to find a birds nest”. Her tone of voice is whiny, loud, commanding, and irritating I picture her nagging her future husband “you have to empty the garbage”.
I head off with dogs. We spot 3 young eagles at beautiful Podillo Lake. They fly straight over head only about 30 feet up. Too fast for me to get a pic. Inspiring. The filtered light on lake reminds me of Monet. We made it to Fort Ebey Landing and hiked through the heat to the sandy bluff. On the way back we stopped for water at Sarah and Isaac Ebeys original homestead. There is a little museum set up there and a very sweet woman held the dogs while I got to peek inside. A big feeling comes over me whenever I come in touch with real history. I signed the guest book. The blockhouse from handcut timbers is the real deal. Here is a great example regarding the meaning of independence. The Ebeys come west and start farming on this prairie. What imaginations, faith, and bravado this must have taken. I’d like to be less reliant on others, organize my life and do more to take up the reins for my own happiness. Made it to Fort Casey and visited the lighthouse.There was a newborn fawn standing at edge of meadow, quivering as it stands on new legs (oh so cute). Too far for phone picture. Quite amazing site with the remains of gunnery built in thirties. A nice windy open place for flying kites. It occurs how the dogs on leashes are a lot like flying kites. They cross back and forth in random arcs, tugging against the string. Today my artist eye was pulled back into the landscape by the awesome Ebey Prairie. Damn! thought I was ready to move on from landscapes into exploring mindscapes. Can I do both?
Time for bed. Tomorrow I drive south to meetup with the amazing independent free thinking spirit Jana Szabo.
Stopped into Payless at Freeland to get salmon for dinner with Jana. Is it just the holiday or is everyone here friendly? Smiles and chit-chatting in the aisles. People actually acknowledging my presence as I walk to the meat counter. Been four or five years since I visited Jana. The indigo blue bay is in view with twenty or so sailboats like glowing jewels from setting sunlight. Jana stepped out as I am parking the truck and greets me. Cool, collected, and casual. Her dogs greet me at the door. Rosie and Bear. Jana explains Bears troubled past as he pretends not to watch from a safe distance. Later Bear pops in under the table when he decides I’m ok. Along with the creative spirit Jana and I have in common, dogs. Jana asked me about travels and how I’m doing in general. We talked about Pike Place Market, getting older, love interests, living alone, and life on other planets.
Laughter and sadness at the same time. After an amazing dinner and Freeland fireworks show I rambled back to Rhodie State Park to campsite.
GG and JP were happy to see me (even with other dog smells) and they had no accidents.
This morning I make coffee without electricity by boiling water over gas stove and pouring thru Mr. Coffee. So simple, why didn’t I think of that at Deception Pass?
An extreme fire ban is on, so no campfires or even charcoal barbecues.
Had lunch with Jana at Kims' Cafe in Coupeville. I imagine running a restaurant for a second but the thought quickly passes. The place is surprisingly empty when we arrive but all tables full when we depart. I had the garlic prawns and Jana seafood stir-fry. We were both pleased with food and service. I bought a funky cool beach bag to tote my sketchbook, glasses, and phone. Jana approved. I have an iphone 6 and let me say a word here. My phone has become essential to survival. It makes traveling in an RV possible. I would not be confident about traveling with such a big rig without making reservations for campsites ahead and knowing something about where I’m going. The plus is that the phone is fun. I take a hundred pictures a day, whenever something strikes me. Sometimes I take pics for information. There are so many apps! Find gas, food, anything you need!
Back to thoughts on independence. Often people have an illusion of independence until networks one relies upon are revealed upon examination. If you use a cell phone, of course you are using a network of thousands of people, maybe millions, I don't know. If you use tools or utensils, are you independent since others ingenuity is being utilized? I suppose one can be an independent thinker, but even then it's a struggle to know how much of what you think and believe is programming and what is independent thinking. I respect those innovators whose creations allow us more freedom and move humanity forward. Sometimes ugly junk comes with freedom. Another discussion for later.
A keen observer with solid judgement, Jana’s a good one to bounce ideas off. I invite her to my camp at Rhodie State Park. She meets JP and GG and they instantly bond. We take one of many trails through the dense forest. We click on a few creative ideas that tie in with my travel adventure.
Sunday would not be a good day to take Port Townsend Ferry with RV for the first time. Wednesday around noon would be perfect to avoid mass messes. I extend my time here by two days, filling out the form, money into envelope and envelope in the slot.
Had a wonderful day with Jana in music studio. She was kind enough to play a few songs for me. Sang two of her own compositions, bringing tears to my eyes, so heartfelt, original; beautiful. She played a couple Joni Mitchell songs and told me about the time in New York she met Joni. It was shortly after John Lennon was murdered. She remembers being told to refrain from approaching Joni but Jana is brazen and wouldn’t let that stop her at the intimate club, important for finding new music acts. She said Joni was courteous enough. I heard Joni is having health issues now and want to say right here, Joni is tied with my personal top five all-time best musician artists. (John Lennon, Jethro Tull, Pink Floyd, Bob Dylan, and Joni) I wish her well and would like to tell everybody how important her voice has been to me, throughout my life. Words cannot express how Blue continues to resonate. Teenage years I sat in front of the record player, thrilled by her delivery of each and every magical phrase. I will always love her music. I wonder what it might be like to spend an afternoon with her though she may be pretty cranky by now (she’s earned it!). Hope she lives to meet her.
I imagine sitting at a table outside on a gray NW cloudy day with Joni Mitchell and Vincent Van Gogh, seeing who could make Vincent laugh. Know any good homo-erotic ear jokes?
Jana generously pointed out a few music and communication apps which could serve me well along my travels. She assured me after I sang Big Yellow Taxi for her that I could carry a tune and had me work on a range below and above my own comfort zone. How many times has someone said: “You can’t carry a tune” or when drawing, “you can’t draw a straight line”. Don't believe them. Believe in yourself, at least until practicality sets in! Understandably ya gotta pay your bills. Shared a nice lunch whipped up by Jana took the dogs for a walk and headed back to camp.
Started up the generator since batteries are under the 2/3 charged mark. I wonder if I should let the batteries drain to close to zero before charging them?
It’s amazing how much gravel I find stuck in the tire treads on my truck. Its become a regular event; picking the gravel out. It can’t be good to let that gravel dig in further, or let it fly out when I get on the freeway. What are you people doing with all the gravel getting stuck in your tires? It reminds me of flossing. I already have enough flossing to do, now gravel removal too?
Solitude develops a rich inner life. Yes, I believe that. Thats part of what I'm doing out here in the forest.