Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Seattle or Bust

After our overnight in Anacortes (which has a boater's dream walking-accessible full-service close we went twice, just because we could), we decided to head for Oak Harbour on Whidbey Island. To get there, we cut through the Swinomish Channel. It's a dredged shipping channel servicing La Connor, one of my very favourite places in Washington. It was a destination favoured by my Nana and I remember many a trip to La Connor via Chuckanut Drive with my grandparents. I was a little surprised by how much being there again made me think of my Nana. It was an interesting change of perspective to arrive by boat, however.

Okay, so those of you who know me...a quick quiz. If I go to a quaint little town like La Connor, where am I likely to spend the most time?

Alright, half marks if you said coffee shop.

Full marks if you said lovely, little independent bookshop. Ding, ding, ding.

Here we are outside of The Next Chapter, possibly top of my list of my "turn-over-the-keys-I'll-take-over-from-here" bookseller fantasy.

Lucas met a friend. Also named Lucas. I can't blame the kid for glomming onto a dog. After all, what is the only non-literate in the family going to do while the rest of us browse books?

Another quick quiz...who, other than me, was the most reluctant to leave the store (which had already closed)?

If you said Molly, give yourself a bonus point. She found a book she wanted badly. I told her that I wouldn't buy it (I had already bought her two books for the trip, although in full disclosure, I hid one of them after I realized it was about the Titanic...who gives their eight year old a book about the Titanic to take ON A BOAT TRIP? I sort of owed her a book, but whatever...). I told her that if she wanted to borrow the money to buy the book, I'd loan it to her.

We bought the book, the first in a series by Erin Hunter called Seekers, and then Molly proceeded to read it all over La Connor.

The picture below was only taken after I insisted that she put the book down for the camera. Her expression is one of tolerance by the barest of margins.

If I didn't ask her to put down the book...this is the sort of picture I got:

I ended up leading her by the arm around the town. La Connor doesn't present much of a traffic challenge, but you have to be a little bit aware.

Once we got back to the boat, we lost her completely.

Only that's not quite true. It is funny how seeing my girl off in her own world can make me feel like she's in mine. I remember my dad yelling into the backseat of the car, telling me to stop reading and enjoy the scenery. I would put my finger down in the middle of a sentence to mark my place, then look out the window at...farmland, or a forest, or a little non-descript town in the middle of nowhere. All I wanted was to be back in whatever century or mystical place my finger was holding for me.

It's funny because I love traveling and seeing new places, but a book can give you the identical experience. It can suck you in in a way that a highway simply cannot. Or a boat trip, for that matter. Molly was in the north with a polar bear. And I was right there next to her, enjoying the scenery. 

I am writing this blog at 12:45 pm in Shilshole Bay, just outside of Seattle. Tomorrow we will take the lock into Lake Union. If we have wifi, we'll update tomorrow.

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