Weekending: Stuart, Summer’s End Sail

Summer is flying by:
statement is a bit overused but 100% 
the honest truth.
We just had to go on a boat trip
after this week’s
off island mall shopping trip, food poisoning, hideous head cold, and
a visit from dear friends-like-family
our week was everything
especially full
but we just had to go on a boat trip
and when a boat’s mooring broke free, sent her tide-ways 
drifting into our boat amidst heavy winds
with an initial call that left us thinking the worse
we weren’t sure we’d be going anywhere
Luke said, it’ll all be fine
he was right; I really need to just listen to him and not worry
after all my worry, it was only a bent prop blade
a few lovely islanders saw the boat heading towards our Three Little Birds
held off the big, blue motorboat
Islanders are awesome:
statement is a bit overused but 100%
the honest truth.
Stuart Island here we come,
giggled and yelled the girls
who really are happiest at sea
By the time we rounded Spieden Island
there wasn’t any wind to sail
so we turned up the Steve Earl CD we’ve had aboard
ever since we bought the boat
electric guitar above the engine’s emphysema purr
I sprawled out
stuffy sinus head cold and all
on the bow with Dall’s porpoise
to either side
with little current or waves of any kind
our littliest sailor took the tiller
and it wasn’t long before Betty Rose
joined me up front
just in time for State Ferry’s wake
where our hands clenched the shrouds
our bottoms airborn above the hatch.
Yes.  We screamed more than we laughed
as Lucy May felt like she’d missed the ride
and in the crossing to Stuart’s Reid Harbor
huge swell met large wake
hands clenched the shrouds
and I held onto Lucy
as she giggled and squealed.
Once ashore
we hiked up the steep hill
searched for fairies
listened to Lucy’s song
about believing in fairies
wanting to be a fairy and wanting to spy on a fairy village
while we all collected large leaves
we wondered if we’d turn green
in the moss-thick forest
with crazy-interesting trees
as Betty said, the best swings are after a sail, a row ashore and a hike up the longest,
steepest hill.  She’s right.
This one is pretty darn special.
And at hill’s top
it was so very nice to be back
since our last trip here
we picked books from the library
and read them in the grass of the late afternoon sun
before walking down the steep,
thick-green hill to the harbor.
We piled into the rowboat I owned as a little girl
and named it Sea Pup
it’s a different color now
as our girls think it’s such a fun way to move about
in the stillness of the oars
trailing seaweed, bull kelp behind the stern
Yup. I’d row anywhere with this guy
and it’s clear the girls would too.
We rowed beside the rock wall of the harbor
dreamed of rock climbing from the dinghy
and painting the landscape
as reflected in the salty sea
so once back at our linear,
a floating dock in the middle of the harbor,
we sketched and painted
all before 
dinner and s’mores 
three Wildwood chapters read aloud once we were all zipped in sleeping bags.
The very next morning
after eggs and coffee and a bit more Wildwood
we rowed ashore
walked to Prevost Harbor
the other harbor
Betty fell in love with Madrona trees
which is easy to do
I used to love Birch trees
but a Madrone tree really is something in hue and history
Olive kept saying,
I like the hangy bark ones
but mostly I think she liked the spider web hammoks
that hung on the bark
and mostly I liked the time we could spend
noticing the tiny details of things
in our slow Sunday morning
we hiked a little over a mile
above beaches, over tree roots 
giant hills
the girls really did great
even with their sometimes tearful pleas to get to trail’s finish
I’m certain they had a blast
peeking under ferns for fairies
looking up evertall evergreens
pointing out a giant mushroom, a bird carcus
and our tiny boat in harbor’s center
from atop the highest hill
far above the rocky cliffs
this weekend was so, so good
I’m just so thankful 
we call these islands home;
we call the three little ladies our own.

how was your weekend?
joining Amanda


  • Tracey says:

    Food poison and head cold? Ouch, I do hope you are better.
    I love seeing all the pictures of your islands and the trees in your world, so very different from my own. I have spend a lot of time on and in the water this summer and it has renewed me. I promised myself months ago to take advantage of where I live and it's one of the best promises I have ever made.
    My favorite cake? Hands down it's tiramisu served with a hot cup of coffee! I would love for you to come and share with me.

  • ~ko says:

    Oh my dear! What a full and wonderful trip! The pictures are breathtaking and your words captured the moments so beautifully! I even sent my husband the link so he could read 🙂 We need a final summer trip like this! Have a wonderful week and that your healthy and whole!

  • WOW! beautiful photos…makes me miss the west. coast

  • swanski says:

    love the fairy seeking adventure that you and your family experienced. All that fresh sea air should have eliminated a head cold and food poisoning! Lovely photos 🙂

  • This is a beautiful post…and such a lovely illustration of how slow can be simply what is needed!

  • jenletts says:

    I've always wanted to sail your part of the world. So different than the FL Keys! Water, no matter where we find it, it soothing to the soul.

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