Thursday, June 25, 2009

Truly west

Hi friends,
We are camped high on a bluff overlooking the Strait of Juan de Fuca at Dungeness Spit Wildlife Refuse in Washington. We can hear the sounds of the waves pounding the shore 100 feet below us. It is, by the way, definitely sweater and hat weather. We have been travelling in spurts and now are planning to rest here for 5 days before heading up to the Bellingham area.

Spokane was a welcome resting spot for us as our first stop in Washington. We have found a great park, Riverside State Park which overlooks the fast moving Spokane River. An osprey was building her nest directly across the river from our site, and Winnie enjoyed some early morning jaunts along the trails on the park. We did put our kayak in Long Lake nearby, and enjoyed an afternoon floating around in the water expressing our inner sea otter nature.
Driving through eastern Washington, we were again in vast dry scrubby plains. I keep wondering how the earliest people had the strength to walk this whole way. The vastness of the whole thing is incredible. We have driven and driven and driven, and still aren't to Bellingham. I mean, endless miles of plains, rolling hills, mountain passes and infinite vistas, and we still haven't reached the end. it makes me think of how vast God must be also. Really vast. This is just one part of one country on one planet in one constellation. Here's a picture of some windmills on the horizon.

I digress. We did get some sneak views of Mt. St. Helens as we drove west. Lynne and I have visited Mt. St. Helens two times before but never got to see "her--she was always hidden in clouds. I was glad to get to western Washington and be among the big trees again--the beautiful tall Douglas firs that make you tilt your head way back to see the top. We also love to hear the Swainson's thrush sing, a hallmark of these forests.

We had a beautiful drive along the Hood Canal on the way here from Olympia, where I finally got a set of fingerprints done to satisfy the Washington State Police. Many of you know that I have sent four different fingerprint cards from three Kentucky law enforcement agencies as part of my attempt to complete my application for Washington Teacher Certification. I started in October. All of them were rejected for various shortcomings (not enough ridge detail, slap prints not in correct order, etc.) So this morning, we went to the mother lode, Washington State Patrol in the capital, Olympia, and the very efficient fingerprint technician had an outstanding set of prints and sent me on my way in 15 minutes.

We are hoping to meet up with our friends Grace and Alan here on the Olympic Peninsula.

We are out of touch again--our cell phones have spotty reception and we have to visit the local Safeway here in Sequim to get internet access (take that, Krogers!)

I love hearing from you all, and as always, miss you dearly.

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