An Alpine Wonderland - Leavenworth, Washington
May 29, 2005
|NOTE: We have added some pictures (above) from the Beauty and the Beast play we saw at Black Diamond. These pictures were taken by the brother of Lindsey Halverson, who starred as Belle. Thanks to Dad Greg who sent them to us.
Our RV Rally was held in Cashmere, Washington, the home of Aplets and Cotlets, the neat candy made from apples and apricots with chopped walnuts. They make other kinds also, but these are the favorites. We toured the factory, had some samples and bought some boxes for our grandchildren. Cashmere is a small town that hasn't done a lot to make itself famous (like the neighboring Leavenworth), There are a couple of respectable restaurants, the county fairgrounds and the Wenatchee River, but it's one of those towns that you've gotta be going there to go there.
At the rally, we both got involved in a cribbage tournament. Suzy won her first round and I made it through two only to lose to a little lady who had trouble counting her cards. Being a nice person, I helped her and made sure she got all the points she had coming to her. That was my mistake. I suspect all her other opponents had done the same thing. At any rate, she got better cards than I did, and that's how the game is won and lost. We enjoyed the match.
Following the rally we moved on to Leavenworth Thousand Trails, one of our membership RV Parks. This is a campground that could be a model for others. We're camped among fir and pine trees with well laid-out sites, full hookups (at least in our area) and fire pits. This is Memorial Day weekend, of course, and the park has filled up, but the first part of the week was quiet. Our friends Steve and Cheryl came in and parked near us, so we shared some good times with them.
The smell of campfires brings back happy memories, and when your neighbors are cooking bacon over the open fire ... oh my! Like many of the Thousand Trails parks, Leavenworth is very family friendly. There are lots of young families with children, from infants through teen years. It is delightful to hear their happy laughter.
Right now it's Saturday afternoon. While I'm writing this, we're listening to music from the campsite across the way. The band that's providing country dance music in the lodge this evening is holding a practice session and stirring up tapping toes all over the area. Tomorrow, Sunday, the Wenatchee Youth Circus is putting on a performance in the big meadow out front. There are tents and booths and high wire riggings already waiting. It'll cost us $3 each to attend. Another blessing of the RVing life!
We did some touring in the town of Leavenworth. This is a quaint Bavarian-themed village nestled in a bend of the Wenatchee River, and encircled by the alpine mountains of the Cascade range. The townsfolk rescued Leavenworth from the pits of despair in the early 60's by asserting the Bavarian theme. Today by city ordinance, all new commercial buildings must meet strict Bavarian architectural and structural requirements.
One of our first stops in Leavenworth was at the hospital so Suzy could get a blood test to be sure her coagulation chemistry was satisfactory. This may become a regular part of her life since she developed a blood clot following her knee surgery. Everything is fine, by the way, and she'll get her next test in Seward, Alaska.
We heard some live music and wandered down to the Leavenworth main park where students from Meeker Middle School in Tacoma, WA, were performing. Three busloads of kids and their adult escorts were in town. The school choir and the band performed some delightful music, then swarmed through the town buying snacks, gifts and souvenirs, all very well-behaved.
Have you ever just decided to turn off the highway and take a little side road? We found Camp 12 Road, which both starts and ends along the small highway between town and our park. Camp 12 Road called us, and we turned westward to see where it would lead. The first 100 yards or so were paved, but it was uphill most of the way from there. We got some great views of the Wenatchee River with snowcapped peaks in the background. We also learned that our Suzuki works very well in 4-wheel drive. The road was deeply rutted in places, but it was in crossing the rockslides that we got our first real test. With the Suzuki tilted sharply toward the downside and wedged tightly against the upslope we hardly slid sideways at all. [For a great description of backroad driving, read Patrick McManus' essay "A Road Less Traveled By" in his book The Night the Bear Ate Goombaw. It is a panic.] Camp 12 Road delivered us safely to the town of Plain, with its Just Plain Grocery and Plain Hardware stores. We'll be sure to tell Granddaughter Renee about Plain, as she is engaged to marry Adam Plain this fall. Maybe they'll spend their honeymoon in Plain, Washington.
Next Wednesday morning, come along with us as we head directly north toward Canada and the Alaska / Yukon adventure of ... Our Life on Wheels.