OXYMORON: LAWNMOWER

Sorry I’ve been gone for a couple of days but this is the first morning in three days that it hasn’t rained. I find it difficult to find things to take pictures of with my rain hood up. Also my lens gets wet which isn’t good either. To further exacerbate the problem I don’t like walking in the rain so I don’t walk very far so not much interesting to see.

I’m glad to say that my Brother Ron has started up his “Walking Fort Bragg” blog again. He’s the one that inspired me to walk and blog around Coupeville. He finds many interesting things along his North California costal town that I think you’ll enjoy as well. Check him out at WalkingFortBragg.com.

But today there was actually some blue spots between the clouds and no rain, good weather is on the way. Here’s a shot of the wharf with a patch of blue in the distance.

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So with that I posed a question to myself, “When  is a lawnmower not a lawn-mower?” I offer the following;

When you don’t pull the cord!

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When you don’t turn the key!

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When it or the owner is too old to push it!

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And then I saw this oldie and I believe it might just still work.
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And finally, “What’s wrong with these pictures?”

This our gray cat Ms. Kitty Kitty sitting in the middle of a gray street on a gray morning, nothing wrong here!

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I’m afraid someone is not having a good day as I believe they might be up the proverbial “Creek without a paddle”! I saw this floating way out in Admiralty Inlet all by itself.

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So that wraps up this week, have a good weekend.

COUPEVILLE ODDS AND ENDS

This mornings walk through Coupeville, across the Ebey Prairie, over to Admiralty Inlet and back yielded nothing specific in pictures. So without a theme today I offer the following.

I’m guessing but I think after a night of grazing on our decorative plants in our front yard these deer needed and nap to digest the feast.

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Next I saw this sign in someone’s window that made me laugh.

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Just after I passed the hospital I heard a helicopter and it looks like someone is having a bad day. Our hospital is very nice but not what you’d call a “full service” hospital so quite often they will transport people who are in trouble by Airlift Northwest to Seattle hospitals. Oh and don’t worry about the power lines and trees, that’s an illusion from the telephoto lens.

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On the way across the prairie is saw what I’d have call “true free-range chickens”. This guys are free to roam anywhere, there is no fence to keep them around. They must be happy there because I never see them crossing the road, but then why would they? 😉

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Within this group of chickens I saw these Guinea Hens which I think are really cool looking.

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When I got to the water on the southwest side of the island I spotted two large cargo ships, one coming and one going. There is a lot of commerce that goes through Admiralty Inlet.

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Heading back across the island I notice that the crops are really starting to come in. This one was next to the old Ferry House at Ebey Landing.

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And then there is this farmer that appears to be growing “Seagulls” 🙂

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I snapped this shot of a beautiful 1892 farmhouse that looks like it could have been built yesterday it’s in such great shape.

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And finally, as I had just crossed the highway that divides the prairie and Coupeville, the sky opened up enough to give me a great view of the Cascade Mountains and Glacier Peak. With the telephoto lens they look like they are just east of the island but in reality they are 75 miles away.

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Enjoy your short week ahead after a nice three day weekend for many. Of course for us retired people it’s just another day.

MEMORIAL DAY

Today is the day we celebrate life and liberty but more importantly it is a day to remember those who gave their all to protect our freedoms and the way of life we have all come to enjoy. So this Memorial Day take a few silent moments to pay respect to those fallen solders. Also if you have the opportunity take a few minutes to thank a veteran who has served this great country.

Todays walk was out to the Sunnyside Cemetery to have my moment of silence.

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As I was walking this morning I couldn’t help but notice all the American flags around town so being Memorial Day that became my “subject for the day”, enjoy.

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Every year the local Lions Club line Main Street with American flags. It really makes for an impressive drive into Coupeville.

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And finally on this Memorial Day, as the United States is at war and under attack by radical Islamic extremists, just like this Eagle is under attack by a murder of crows, he remains vigilant and determined to stay the course and not waver. That’s pretty well defines the resolve of the American people and the fine solders who protect us. God Bless America.

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CAPTAIN WHIDBEY INN

I wrapped up this week by walking 6.7 miles out Madrona Way to Captain Whidbey Inn and back. An interesting thing  about the name of the inn is I can find no historical reference where Joseph Whidbey was ever a “Captain”. He was a “Master” and was credited with many discoveries around Puget Sound while exploring with the Vancouver Expedition in 1791 – 1795. Captain Vancouver named Whidbey Island after him.

It was a beautiful walk and I thought the lighting was striking looking back over the mussel rafts to the wharf and Cascade Mountains.

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I also spotted this beautiful two masted sailboat reflecting in the cove.

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The Captain Whidbey Inn sign is on Madrona Way and  the driveway goes in a ways to get to the inn.

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The main lodge was built in 1907 and is much as it was back then. The rooms are restored just as it would have been in the early 1900’s. There is also a “fine-dining” dining room and a tavern that severs lunch.

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If you want more modern accommodations there is a hotel like building that is also very nice.

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These are the grounds looking out toward one of the Twin Lagoons that I talked about in an earlier blog.

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It’s a great place to kick back and relax while visiting Coupeville and the surrounding area.

Back in Coupeville it looked like they are getting the town ready for the big Memorial Day parade tomorrow. This street sweeper was out early this morning.

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I spotted this “No Parking” sign that talks about the parade. I think it’s going to be really “BIG” if it goes from 6:00AM to 12:30 PM. Actually the parade starts at 11:00 and there is a picnic in the Town Park as well as a concert. If you’re in the area stop by for a nice small town celebration.

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Whatever you do this weekend but sure to take time to think what Memorial Day is all about and give thanks to the vet’s that have protected our freedom’s and given so much.

WEATHER VANES

My friend Sallie wrote, “From chairs to chimneys – you’re raising your sights I see.” Well today I went a little higher. We have some very nice weather vanes around Coupeville and I decided to document them in my photoblog. My brother Ron has a blog similar to mine and he use to do themes and we were just talking about that after I did todays photo shoot. He’s done “weather vanes” in Fort Bragg, California. So here we go.

I won’t talk about each one because they were just randomly shot on top of houses and other buildings. This first on though is on top of our Island County Historical Museum.

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Just to give you a little idea of the lengths I go to bringing you these photos I walked 7.2 miles this morning and here’s the route I took.

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Here’s a picture looking toward Coupeville and the wharf.

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And here’s Mr. Canon’s 35X zoom picture of the wharf from that same point.

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So onward to another wonderful day in paradise, enjoy!

COUPEVILLE CHIMNEYS

While walking this morning I happened to look up and saw this interesting chimney on an old Victorian bed and breakfast, The Compass Rose. That gave me the idea to check out other old chimneys around Coupeville.

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If you haven’t looked up lately to see chimneys on the homes in your town the is more than likely what you’ll see.

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Not very exciting compared to these grand old brick chimneys that were built in the late 1800’s.

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And then there’s the chimney on our 1953 home, still brick but not very fancy.

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And now for something  completely different! Covered wagons were the choice for moving families across the prairies of the west. They were often called “schooners” or “ships of the prairie”. There are no covered wagons  around Coupeville because it’s on a island and the only way to get here was by ship. Imagine my surprise when I saw this ship going across our prairie! It must have been pretty close to shore to appear this big.

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And that was my walking and gawking effort for today. I hope you enjoyed it and if there’s anything you’re interested in seeing from around my wee town just make a comment and I’ll try to accommodate your request.

COUPEVILLE CHAIRS

This mornings walk was cool, 45 degrees F; breezy, gusts to 15 MPH; and raining. It made for an interesting walk that was only 4.8 miles long. When I have the hood up on my rain coat it makes it difficult to look around as usual for photo ops. I did notice a bench and thought that might make for something interesting.

There are a lot of places around Coupeville where people like to sit out and enjoy the scenery. A lot of seats face Penn Cove where you can watch sailboats and other water craft go by. So with that preamble here’s what I found.

This bench sits beside a small pond in these peoples front yard along with a view of the cove.

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This one is interesting as it looks like vines could grow on it but I didn’t see any.

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Here’s a nice place to spend an evening watching the sunset over a campfire.

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I saw this one hanging under a tree down on Madrona Way. It too looks out to the cove.

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This setting is next to one of my favorite heritage homes in Coupeville. It looks like a nice gathering spot with a campfire and glass of red?

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It’s unfortunate that the perspective doesn’t show it but I think Lilly Tomlin lives in this house. This chair is about eight feet tall, just like the rocking chair Edith Ann use to sit in.

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And just in cast you aren’t fortunate enough to live in Coupeville and have a chair there are numerous benches around town where you can enjoy the view as well. This bench, provided by the Lions Club, is in Captain Thomas Coup Park.

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So come visit Coupeville. If you do be sure to wave or stop and chat with us on our front porch where we sit and watch the tide go in and out.

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Thanks again for reading my blog, I hope you enjoy it. Please share the fun with your friends and family.

DARREL IS BACK!

Today’s walk was going to be called “Art Walk” but while out and about I noticed Darrel, a retired Methodist minister from Lincoln Nebraska. He’s one of those hearty souls that winters in Nebraska. Most people from the island winter in Arizona.

Before I show you Darrel I want to give you a little background. Most mornings I walk around 7 miles. My 72 year old brother Ron walks 3 – 4 miles and rides his bike 10 – 20 miles every day. So Darrel rides his bike three blocks, big deal. He walks down three flights of stairs, ho hum. He goes for a swim in Penn Cove at around 48 degrees F, burr. Then he walks back up the three flights of stairs and rides the three blocks back home. So what’s the big deal? He’s 93 YEARS OLD!!! He’s a delight to talk to and sharp as a tack.

I saw him while I was out on the wharf so the light wasn’t very good and he was a long ways away, but here he is just as he was diving into the water.

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So now I’ll continue with my “Art Walk”. First up I spotted this yard art that’s pretty cool. It’s like a “What-is-it” playing a horn. It’s made from all kinds of interesting things.

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A little further on I stopped at the Pacific NorthWest Art School. They have several interesting pieces of art and paintings. Here is a small sampling.

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And then I spotted this metal tree on the side of a house and it looked really neat in the morning sun.

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GOING TO CHICAGO

Yep this morning I walked all the way to Chicago and back, a total of 11.5 miles round trip. This blog will be a little long but with an extra long walk that’s what you get.

First stop before I got to Chicago was this beautiful old barn. It’s a little run down but still in use.

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The first look I got of Chicago was from a hill looking south. The pilings lead to Keystone Spit where Chicago was going to be built. I’m talking about the little sticks crossing the lagoon. More on the history in a moment.

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In 1890 the North Pacific Land Company had hoped to make a booming townsite on Kennedy Spit. A railroad would link “Chicago” with Coupeville and Puget Sound communities. The pilings across the lagoon were to support the railroad tracks. The “boom” never happened and the railroad never arrived.

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Model homes were built in “Chicago” in the 1970’s. Built for speculation, the model homes were only two of hundreds to be sold on the spit. Years of battle between the community and spit developers ended with a land exchange  between Olympic National Park and Washington State Parks. The spit was preserved by its inclusion in Fort Casey Historical State Park. In 1988 firefighters conducted a controlled burn to remove the buildings. Here’s the kiosk at the park.

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This is the original plat of Chicago Island Company submitted by the North Pacific Land Company.

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There are still several houses on the spit that must fall just outside the park.

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As I was leaving Chicago I noticed this neat mailbox and you know I love mailboxes.

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I also spotted this metal and canvas art piece. When I first saw it I wasn’t sure what it was but upon closer examination is see it’s a whales tail.

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At the west end of the spit is a boat launch where it looks like there are a bunch of people playing hooky at 8:00am on a Friday morning. The salmon are running and these are all boat trailers.

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Just west of the boat launch is the Coupeville ferry terminal. The Kennewick ferry was just loading cars as I was walking by getting ready for the trop across Admiralty Inlet over to Port Townsend.

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No matter what way you get onto Whidbey Island you’ll see this sign. There is one by the Deception Pass Bridge, one at the Clinton ferry terminal and here at Coupeville.

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So on that happy note, come visit Whidbey Island via Scenic Isle Way. Have a great weekend and come to the Penn Cove Waterfest.