A New Year and time to start planning for the next stage, getting beyond being a nomad and perpetual couch surfer. This last year has taken me from the Pacific Northwest and British Columbia to California and Mexico, and across the Pacific to Tahiti, Australia and New Zealand. Campervan life is starting to look like a very good option for me.
Summer, that is!
The past four days have been gray, misty cold in the mornings and a little sun - occasionally in the afternoon. Heat on in the mornings, for sure and today, for the first time, on all day. Summer is definitely over.
I can't complain though, because we have had a glorious run of wonderful weather. Now I just have to adjust my thinking to "inside" and "gray" days. The trees are still turning but leaves falling like, well...leaves! Pretty colors still, before the really dark days.
It's fun have Betsy here; nice having easy company and as we are both working, we aren't making a lot of day trips. And both of us are on tight budgets which also slows down the field trips. We went blackberry picking a couple of times and plan on going to the Farmers Market tomorrow, provided it's not raining. Then to Danelle's new house which I haven't seen yet. And on Monday, we are going for coffee at Betsy's friends' house who live up here.
However, we did have a little dinner party last night with Susan, Dan, Mardelle and Jim. Very low key with fresh salmon which I did in the oven with dill, red onions and lemons. Delicious, even if I say so myself. And today, I made a whole big batch of kale crisps.
It sounds like ecology is kicking into gear - at least we are feeling hopeful that the funding is progressing and with the big board meeting tomorrow, we should know more. It will make life a lot easier, that's for sure. And having a regular income will allow me to take periodic trips to SoCal and get out of the weather. That helped so much last year, then I can handle the gray until I can afford to rent this place out and find somewhere sunny to put down some roots.
I found that even the warm days here were almost too warm for me; I understand from all my MS reading, that heat is not good - and neither is cold! So I need a place of perpetual spring, where the sun shines most of the time and temperatures are comfortable all year. Costa Rica highlands? Ecuador? So my dreams of living on the beach in a tropical climate might end up not being practical for me. But I will most likely try it out to make sure - I know I would be as happy as a clam living in some remote, sunny place where I can have a garden, go swimming in the sea every day, and which is within an easy flight of the kids.
So I am keeping my options open - and feel pretty confident that very soon, I will actually have some!
But the days are definitely getting a lot shorter - and despite the moderately warm days, the nights are decidedly nippy. As the sun drops closer to the top of the hill, the temperature drops ten degrees - instantly.
Mornings need the heat on and windows closed until mid-morning. And oh the colors, though! Morning warm colors lighting the trees across the estuary, and the air so still the water is like glass with barely a ripple.
Betsy arrived on Tuesday and every day has been perfect. She is saying if the weather doesn't change, she is never going to believe my whining about the gray, the cold, the damp! I just looked at the forecast and it looks like the next two weeks are going to be good with perhaps the chance of a shower or two. But the telling factor is the falling night time temperatures; down to the 30s in two weeks. Bbbbbrrrrrr....
We've been out and about a bit - this morning at the farmers market (photos) and then lunch at the Blue Moose Cafe with a beer at the brewery after that. More activity than I normally have, but we are both on very tight budgets so watching pennies. Tomorrow, if we don't go out to Port Angeles to see the house and tenants, we'll go back up to Port Townsend to watch the Kinetic Skulpture Race - a typically bizarre Port Townsend event.
I added a new title to my list of jobs - Editor of Harbors Magazine and Around the Pacific Northwest magazine. Both are run by the same publisher who is local in Port Townsend. Both are quarterly mags, so there isn't a huge amount of work although from the first drafts of some of the articles I've seen, it might take me longer than anticipated! Some of the writing is atrocious! Anyway, it should be fun and I hope to get a couple of trips out of it, which will add to the benefits. A seaplane flight up into the islands would be good!
Ecology is still waiting... and waiting... and waiting. The BIG investor meeting is supposed to be next Saturday which apparently is the make it or break it point, so we are holding thumbs that something comes of it. I REALLY want it to work as it feels like the right place for me to be. Then, when that back pay comes through, I can get the repairs on the house done and get it rented out and maybe out of here by the dead of winter. At least that is the current plan but it all hinges on ecology. Otherwise, looks like I will be here for the duration.
If that is the case, then I will unpack my boxes (still stored and hidden away) and hang all my pictures and put out all my stuff so it feels like home.
The sun is out, it's above 60 during the day, the flowers are daring to bloom and I can leave the windows open! Now we just have to believe it will last more than a couple of days. And to top it off, it's crab season!
The 4th of July was the summer kickoff with a barbecue at Bill's property and then to North Beach yesterday for the first potluck of the season. People coming out of hibernation, ready for the Vitamin D. Grab it while it's here!
The potlucks are so much fun - it was the usual bunch of people and it doesn't seem to matter what food anyone brings, it always works so well. The drink of choice - at least with the girls - has changed from wine to gin. For me, wine seems to acidic and for the others, I don't know really. So there was a variety of brands and a lot of sliced limes! A true taste of summer, with the spare ribs, salads, chicken, appies and desert. And fresh corn which went straight on the grill and I have the leftovers and need to figure out something to do with them. Corn pudding?
This place is amazingly beautiful when the sun comes out. The air is clean and clear, the colors pop and everywhere people are smiling.
This is when every visitor says, "Oh, we should move here!" Then winter rolls around and reality sets in. Give them two years and they head south again. Just like I will do as soon as I can.
But while it is good - you just can't beat it.
My latest eBay adventure is turning into something more than I had anticipated and it's all good. My friend Bill, the same Bill who has loaned me a car is a collector of MANY things and he and I are going to list his stuff on eBay and other auction sites. Stuff ranges from old collectible cameras and car manuals to enormous boat engines, props and cars and trucks. Lots of collectibles and my favorite so far, an old dynamite blaster like you see in the old western movies! It is a classic and I know I am going to be constantly amazed at what is hidden and stored out there. His 10 acres is a veritable treasure trove as he has been saving and collecting his entire life.
Next week, I will be spending three days in the Kangen store which I think is going to work out well. I get customers and while no one is there, can do any other work as there is wi-fi there. And it gets me out of the house so I am not so isolated. A good thing all round. Pat said last night how well I look and I can only attribute it to the water - because really nothing else has changed. There are still the usually stresses (minus one giant one) but still my life is not a bed of roses yet. So it has to be the Kangen water!
The house is clean, the yard semi-done but this time of year, it seems like it constantly needs care. The main reason I am here, the kitties, are fine. They were sort of freaky when I first got here. I think Chris was not here much at all - from their behaviour and the state of the place.
It is just amazing to me that someone can spin out like that, be totally illogical and paranoid. This episode is far worse than any I have experienced around him - and I have seen a lot! All because he didn't want to sign a rental agreement! Oh well, his loss.
So I have a roof over my head and a place for the summer. Then who knows?
It's been raining for the last couple of days and not getting much above 55F (12C) so not pleasant at all. However, this hasn't stopped the osprey from fishing. Every evening, around 5 he shows up (or she, not sure!) and cruises and fishes the estuary. The image is shot with my new camera, zoomed to 600! Pretty amazing for a little camera like this! Love it!
I keep hearing that ecology is going to produce and keep holding the vision but my enthusiasm for the project is waning. So once again, looking for something else to do! But it is very discouraging - same reasons as always - bad economy, wrong age, wrong industry. But will keep on keeping on.
I think when the weather improves, I will feel better.
On a more cheerful note, Ryan is doing fantastically well as is Cody! So then I think - what else really matters?