After a week away from Bellingham because of the snow and cold, I was in real need of a long walk on the boardwalk this morning.
I was looking for music to play on my drive up there, and found a CD – still in its hermetically-sealed wrapping – sitting in my car’s driver’s door pocket. I don’t know how I came by this CD. I don’t even know how long it was sitting in there. Years maybe. And the writing on it was too small for me to read (without glasses) who the musician was or what kind of music it might be. But what the heck, right? I was open to whatever came out. I slid that baby into my car’s CD player and started on my drive – curious to hear what treasure I’d found. Would it be some blues by Joe Bonamassa maybe? Or maybe John Prine or The Grateful Dead or Jason Mraz or Alison Krauss?
Hymns. Hymns came out of the speakers. The rousing old ones I used to sing in Sunday School. And I found myself tearing up at the inspiration I felt from the music flowing around me. Of course, I had to sing along: “He leadeth me, He leadeth me; By His own hand, He leadeth me…” (Joseph H. Gilmore)
So I got to Bellingham, parked by the Fairhaven Green, and started on my walk. It was amazing up there this morning – the lighting was incredible. My usual friends were there – the crows and seagulls and goldeneye ducks. I ordered my almond milk mocha from one of my favorite baristas at Wood’s (“Do you want whipped cream with that?” she asked, and I almost said “yes” automatically until I remembered that I’m trying to go vegan. “Good try!” I laughed, “You almost got me that time!” And she laughed, too.)
I sat down at a picnic table and sipped on my mocha and took pictures. A jogger in a red jacket stopped and pointed out a seal swimming in the bay to me, and I pointed out a sailboat just coming around in front of Wood’s. We smiled at each other through our masks (you can tell when someone’s smiling through a mask now, right?) and wished each other a good day.
I finished my mocha and started back along the boardwalk. The boardwalk was empty as I started my return trip and I started singing, “He leadeth me, He leadeth me; By His own hand, He leadeth me…” And just then the man in the red jacked came jogging by me. He startled me and I was a little embarrassed that he’d caught me singing. But he turned around ((for those concerned – he was about 10 feet away at this point), smiled a big grin as he went past, and said he likes to meditate on the boardwalk, too.
Everyone was so nice and friendly and kind this morning in Bellingham. It felt good to be back up there again.
Found things to make me smile in Bellingham, Washington, this week. Elise was wearing the Finnish Sami hat that she bought in France one year during Christmas; Raven the Pup was out and about with his humans, enjoying being petted by new friends; and a heron did a fly-over for me…
Gave a test drive to 2021. On the first day of the new year I ventured out onto the boardwalk in Bellingham, Washington, and on 2021’s second day I took a walk on the Padilla Bay Dike in Skagit County. No calamities, catastrophes, or chaos to report thus far. Fingers crossed.
Bellingham, Washington this morning: The wind was gusting, the waves were crashing, the ducks were ducking, and Koda the Dog (and fashion-plate) was sporting a very dapper trashcan bag to fend off the rain…
Photos from the last week in Bellingham, Washington: The Alaska Ferry glowing in the sunshine; the bay reflecting the sky; Trumpeter swans flying over the Alaska Ferry; the last of the autumn leaves; a rainbow in the fog; the boardwalk; and an empty coal train rumbling under the ramp to Taylor Dock, and Sockeye the Pup coming up to greet me.
This week I walked down to a part of Bellingham that I haven’t visited for a while – the area near the Alaska Ferry Terminal and Marine Park. I remembered bringing Dad (Dee Molenaar) down there a couple years ago when he was 100 or so. He sat on one of those concrete slabs by the water and let me take his photo. I touched the concrete slab where he’d sat, and remembered that day with him.
I saw a woman balancing on a curb in the Alaska Ferry terminal – enjoying herself – and I smiled as I watched her. I recognized a kindred spirit. Later, as I was walking out of Marine Park, I saw her coming my way and I smiled at her and asked her if she was the woman I’d seen balancing on the curb earlier. She laughed and admitted it was she. I told her we were kindred spirits, and she laughed again and we introduced ourselves – she told me her name was Victoria.
The colors were beautiful in Bellingham last week. I went in a quest for gold and rubies and found them in abundance. – Karen Molenaar Terrell
Here are some recent photos of herons in Skagit County, Washington. All of these photos caught a moment – or series of moments – that was, for me, out of the ordinary. I felt really blessed to be where I was, when I was. (Photos by Karen Molenaar Terrell.)
I forgot to tell you about the deer I saw on the trails of Bellingham, Washington, this week! It was magic, my friends – pure magic! I was walking on the path between Boulevard Park and downtown Bellingham, snapping photos left and right, and suddenly this couple walking towards me stopped and pointed into the woods. Whoah….
For the next five minutes the little family of deer you see below calmly grazed on the trees and bushes on the side of the trail and let me take photos of them. They came really close to me – completely unafraid. It wasn’t until a barking dog and his humans approached that the deer decided it was time to cross the trail and exit into the woods on the other side. They came within feet of me as they moved off the trail.
I felt such a beautiful peace in their presence. Here are some photos…