Friends…. June 10, 2017
We’ve been here one year today. It’s been an amazing experience moving about as far away from the Texas Gulf as possible and still remain in the USA. I was worried about the weather and whether I would like it. I’m part lizard and love the heat. But I had to admit the combination of heat and humidity in Texas was really hard to live with. Add a million mosquitoes to the heat and Summer was really no fun in Texas – we lived in air conditioning all the time, and kept the windows closed. Here it’s all different. We’ve had the hardest Winter on record, and it was fun. A few really cold days, some snow, and a new coat – not a big deal and not painful. The climate here is amazing. The Ocean modulates the temperatures – our high is around 70, and the low is 50. No wind at all, which is one reason this temp range is extremely comfortable. We’ll hit the 80’s this Summer, but the nights cool off and the evening breeze is welcome. So, the windows are open most of the time, and the house smells fresh – it’s great sleeping weather. The Sun is up at 5 am, and we get 16 hours of sunshine during Summer days. That’s one reason everything grows like crazy here. It is cloudy a lot, but the rain here is gentle and doesn’t interfere with shopping and getting around. We have four different cities close by including the big city, Bellingham, pop. 190K, just 15 miles away, where we can get everything we need. There’s not much in Blaine, but Lynden and Ferndale have stores and restaurants and lots of color. Both cities have huge baskets of flowers hanging from the light poles on all the main streets. Leslie has been doing her share of planting flowers around here. Two pots of yellow Margarite daisies, blue lobelia, orange marigolds, and miniature white daisies sit on each side of the garage. The front bed has nasturtiums lemon thyme, delphiniums, snapdragons, chives, and radishes flourishing. In the back yard, Leslie created a new flower bed against the fence and planted ivy which is growing up and covering the fence. Petunias and impatiens also planted there are in full color with bright faces. So, you can see that Washington agrees with Leslie and she is in heaven tending her garden and flowers. And driving the backroads with me. We are in two lane heaven and always drive into Ferndale using just quiet country roads that cut across the ridge tops and dip into valleys with miles of green fields and cattle grazing.
The strawberry crop is coming in now; it’s late as we had a cool Spring. The raspberry vines now look like huge bushes with twice as many leaves as last month. Hundreds of white bales of hay dot some fields. Farmers wrap a bale of hay in white plastic sheets so it will not get moldy and can bet stored outside in the rain. In the distance, these white bales look like huge marshmallows covering the hillside. And at least one, and usually two or three dairies will also be snuggled in between the raspberry fields and the long arms of the dense forest that never gives up the right of way. It’s an unusual mix of land use, topography, and natural scenic beauty – we always leave the map at home, but Leslie is a superb navigator and rarely makes a wrong turn as we explore the back roads. Lots of new roads left, and that makes me happy. I actually like the weather here. When the Sun is out, it is glorious. The rain is gentle, and it’s never cold. The people are friendly and generally happy to be here; the two safest cities in Washington are Ferndale and Lynden – our area. We are really lucky to be in this part of the state, thanks to Pete, Leslie’s Son, for leading us here. Seattle is not too far away but of no interest as we get Seattle tv stations and see the traffic and hear about the gang activity. We like living in the sticks and driving the back roads into town.