Travelogue 1: Pacific Northwest Revisited

I am disinclined to travel these days, preferring to remain in the half-acre gardens I have created with my own hands these past five years. Yet on the spur of the moment, I agreed to a three-week house and pet sitting gig for dear friend in one of my favorite places to visit, the Pacific Northwest. Being springtime, I knew the weather might be dicey. But after surges of early summer heat in Hawaii, I was looking forward to some relief.

Lucky for me I adapted fairly quickly, taking a couple of days to rest and acclimate, going from needing seventy degrees indoors to keep my teeth from chattering and my muscles from tightening up to sixty-five two days later, then simply let the temperature be what it would be. Four days from my arrival, the sun broke through predictably platinum skies.

Every day so far, I have gone out hiking. Old growth forests draw me in with their majestic beauty; beaches, though breezy and quite chilly this time of year, offer expanses of space in which to contemplate horizons yet to be realized, literally and figuratively. I never know what to expect from solitude in unfamiliar places, and this journey shook me down further, rattling out fears and patterns not usually obvious in my everyday routine. It’s good to dislodge the demons, to venture forth and discover that life perpetually surprises.

When I travel, I follow my nose whenever possible. Being lost brings me the most interesting adventures. The first place I stumbled upon was a beach in the early morning, a lone older man sitting in a folding chair close to the shoreline, fishing pole propped in the sand, stiff wind notwithstanding. I walked a few hundred feet toward him, but he seemed disinclined to chat, likely preferring the solitude I, myself treasure. As I turned to go, an eagle swooped over my shoulder, seagulls in screaming hot pursuit. The harassment likely annoyed the eagle who was doubtlessly tending a nest nearby. Houses lined the upper portion of the beach, separated by a buffer of driftwood typical in this part of the world. The eagle landed on a familiar rooftop and I knew this because of the streaks of white dribbling from the ridgeline. Anchored in strong talons, she began tearing apart the fish she had caught, and was left alone for a few minutes until one persistent scavenger alighted a few feet behind her. Having had enough at that point, she fled to the tall conifers. And I returned to my rental car, switched on Apple Maps to figure out where I’d gotten to, and headed out to hike a nearby forest trail.

iPhone shots taken from a distance are not ideal. Still, you can see the snow-capped Cascade Mountain Range, a cropped shot of the fisherman, and a crop of the rooftop eagle.

16 thoughts on “Travelogue 1: Pacific Northwest Revisited

    1. As it should, Paul. We are not separate from the natural world. We presume to be at our peril. At least that is what I have observed so far in almost 66 years. 😉 Aloha dear one. Have a great weekend! 💕

    1. Thanks, Eliza. Now if only they would stay purged … aaahhh. I have a full day sail booked for Monday out of Friday Harbor to see if we can spot whales. Going with a naturalist and his wife. Hoping for good weather though the radar app says possible rain. We shall see. 😻🤗🙏

      1. Thank you! 🙏 According to the captain, it’s going to be cold. Headed to the thrift stores today to see if I can find a better pair of gloves that I brought. 😜😘

    1. Thanks, Balroop. Yes, refreshing is the word! I’ve been hiking every day, and barely breaking a sweat. At home, I’d be drenched, if happily so 😉 Enjoy the upcoming week! Aloha ❤

  1. Sounds like you are enjoying your time pet sitting dear Bela.. and oh to have an eagle land on the roof..
    Enjoy your time away dear Bela.. Loved your descriptive post my friend..
    Enjoy ENJOY!! ❤

    1. Sue, I Am enjoying my time here, thanks! And eagles abound, as you’ll see from the photos I’ve just posted in Day Sail. The last photo is of a juvenile Golden Eagle, a rare sight in these parts. ❤ ❤ ❤

  2. So much fun to read this, Bela! Pictures make me homesick for Puget Sound (though our views were usually from the other side, looking west at the Olympics, with the Cascades “behind” us). It certainly would be a climate adjustment coming from Hawaii! Love the photos – especially the one of the eagle. ❤️💕

    1. Glad you enjoyed the read, Betty. Yes, it took about 3 days to adjust. I can just never wrap my mind around how cold it’s going to be once I get anywhere outside of the H islands. I always end up bringing short sleeve shirts and cropped pants, none of which I end up wearing. I end up doubling up on long sleeve shirts and a sweatshirt with a fleece vest, and that usually does it for me. Love the crisp air. I feel quite suited to where we live. Grateful I can come here as often as I do and get my raptor and forest fix. 😎🌏🙏💕

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