A Good Family Visit
May 13, 2005
|As you can see from the photos above, we did get our computer fixed and back up to speed (we're pretty sure). We have added some pictures to the previous two episodes to complement the narratives. If you want to take a minute to look back there, we'll wait for you to get back before moving on. (To look back, go to the bottom of this page and click on the left arrow labeled "Previous." You can move back as many times as you want, then click the right arrow to return one episode at a time.)
Ah, you're back, so here we go.
Last time we met, we had just arrived at Lost Lake RV Park near Olympia, Washington. This is one of the parks we can use for a few dollars a night because we have exchange membership privileges. It's a beautiful park high on a hill among evergreens, Scotch broom, and other flora. The campsites were spacious, allowing a sense of privacy without isolation. The park is changing its orientation, however, and seems to be downplaying the short-term camping in favor of deeded lots. The only negative we found about this park was that their electric power was unsteady, and not always up to the level we needed. Thank goodness we have a Hughes Autoformer, a very heavy electronic gizmo that boosts low power and protects against surges.
We made three round trips from Lost Lake to Tacoma in getting the computer repaired, and on one of those trips we decided to tour Fort Lewis, which was established during the time of the First World War. We weren't prepared, however, for their tight security. To get onto the fort at all we would need to take a number, sit and wait, then present photo ID, proof of citizenship, proof of insurance, proof of financial capacity, and an invitation from someone higher up the ladder than the Emperor Claudius. We asked if we could at least mosey about the old main gate, built at the end of WWI to look like early-day forts built during the campaign to eradicate the original citizens of this country. That we could do, but don't take any pictures or we'd be clapped in irons and our cameras would be confiscated. So you won't see any pictures of Fort Lewis today.
The next stop on our journey was to visit Suzy's cousin Sheila Halligan and her husband Bob. They have a beautiful cabin in Lakebay, WA, right on the shore of Puget Sound, surrounded by massive hemlocks, Douglas fir, vine maple, big leaf maple, native huckleberries, and magnificent rhododendrons. We hadn't exchanged much more than Christmas cards with Sheila and Bob for over twenty years, but it was like we were best of friends. We parked our RV on their property, after a harrowing struggle making some extremely tight turns in narrow passageways. Suzy drives the motorhome very well, and I stand outside frantically waving my arms. She says she can't do it without me, but at one point I figured she'd like to try.
The Halligans have five acres here. Their cabin is open and airy inside, with large picture windows overlooking the Sound. It's a short stroll down to the beach, where they often sit and contemplate the world. Clamming is popular here, and they can harvest rock crab just a few feet from their property line. Bob pointed out a heron and a kingfisher out on the water, and told us they often spot eagles. We were disappointed not to catch sight of our national bird during our stay.
We felt very much at home with Bob and Sheila, having dinner one night at their table, and they joined us for dinner in the RV the next night. We stayed an unplanned third night. Sheila and Bob had gone back to their home on Mercer Island, and they gave us permission to stay and use their dishwasher and laundry facilities.
Thursday we arrived at our next stop, Lake Sawyer at Black Diamond, WA. Again we are surrounded by trees, are not far from the lake, and are comfortable in our rolling home. Our plan while we are here is to do a little sightseeing (Green River Gorge and Flaming Geyser are the likely targets). We had thought about dropping down to visit Mt. St. Helens, but that's a 200-plus mile round trip, and the weather report isn't promising. We'll save that for August when we get back from Alaska.
Tata for now. We hope you continue to enjoy following us on ... Our Life on Wheels.