In the early pre-dawn hour I reach from my bed and switch on the heater, it was colder than usual. I know the science behind the cold weather; east winds and clear skies. For now I cuddle under my blankets with my two dogs. As I drifted back to sleep I was thinking it will be a sunny day at the lighthouse. I will enjoy it if I dress warm enough.
It was a glorious day. Friends, sun, and the beach. We walked to the beach enjoying each other’s companionship.
We relaxed on the beach and Peter spent time taking wonderful photos. The following photos are contributed by Peter. Thank you Peter. Continue reading
Julie and Peter came to visit today and are staying in a yurt. The yurt comes with electric light and heater, almost all the comforts of home. Peter’s only critique of the yurt is that without some jerry-rigging to the beds, pillows slide onto the floor all night long. Peter fashioned a headboard for the second night to keep the wandering pillows in place.
I’ve read the lighthouse material, listened to three docents give their spiel and given three tours myself. I am now qualified to be on my own. So you may wonder: “What do I do”? I drive to the parking lot wearing my muck shoes or muck boots and I grab my daypack full of extra clothes and I start walking up the hill. I’ve already learned that the weather changes frequently here. Rain, then sun, rain again, wind… It just keeps changing. So I try to be prepared for anything.
I started the day by taking the dogs to the beach in the morning. I checked the tide table and learned that low tide was 7:00 am, so I left the campground early with most of my fellow docents and hosts still sleeping. I definitely have not slipped into the retirement routine. We had the beach to ourselves, the dogs running and enjoying themselves.
After my visit to the beach I went for my orientation. I thought I would be eased into the job. Silly me. Two hours of orientation then a couple hours at the lighthouse learning the spiel, the security stuff, and hearing stories about difficult people.
A sunny day on the coast has to be appreciated outside and today it was sunny. My fellow docents told me that it has been raining everyday this month stopping at Christmas. Some were leaving at the end of the month for dryer climates and others bought better rain gear and are staying. Michael wears shorts each day, perhaps to confront the rain gods and provoke them, letting them know he will not let them steal his happiness.
With advice to go buy a dehumidifier and rain gear, I drove to Florence to go shopping. I bought some essentials and then was swayed by the sun to stop the shopping and start exploring. I headed north. Stopping at the Carl Washburn beach the dogs ran like they had been caged for a year. Pure delight; they ran, smelt everything and retrieved. And I smiled. The beach extends for what seems to be miles. I have four weeks ahead of me to walk and enjoy this beach, watching the dogs run. Life is good.
I drove into the campground and immediately had a good feeling. Trailers were lighted with Christmas lights and people were out walking their dogs. I introduced myself and was immediately accepted into the volunteer family. Michael offered to back up my trailer into my space – hooray. The trailer is now parallel to the pavement, it wouldn’t have been without his help. And I was invited to Christmas dinner, it would be served in half an hour. My first day couldn’t have been any better.
I’m off for a month, to unwind and to forget about work; to stop dreaming about work. A time to slow down and forget about deadlines, meetings, and the ever present MS outlook schedule that rules my life.
Hecate Head lighthouse, here I come. I’m going to be a lighthouse docent for a month.
I had celebrated Christmas with family and friends last weekend. So I left driving on Christmas Eve. Yes, WSDOT indicated I would be driving during the worst traffic. And there was traffic, but orderly and kind. I wish I could have taken a picture of a Santa I saw driving down the road. White beard with a red hat.
The next morning Santa gave me a good present this year. Rocket my dog, ran and retrieved like his old self. He has an autoimmune disease that flared up recently. I’ve been working with the vet trying different drug dosages and recently we changed drugs. Progress. He will have fun running on the beach playing in the sand and water.