Christmas 2000


Around our house Christmas is always such a joy and such a challenge.  Christmas 2000 was no exception.  Kris had made arrangements to rent the wonderful Beachcomber at Orcas for four nights.  We were going to make it a great family affair with no hassle.  No decorations to put up, no parties to organize.  Just hang out on Puget Sound with the family in some of the most relaxing and beautiful environment anywhere.

 We of course invited Bob, Carolyn and the grandkids, who were, after all, the object of our attention.  Of course Vicki, Kris’s sister leaped on board.  All the way from Gloucester.  We had hoped that TOGB (The Old Grey Bear – Kris’s dad) and Danielle would come, but the woods didn’t appeal.


As the date grew close, we decided to take advantage of the event and rent an SUV down here and load it up with some things that had been accumulating in the basement for Bob and Carolyn.  Sort of drop it off on the way - instead of flying to Seattle.  In other words, complicate things.  These "things" turned out to be 2 large bookcases (disassembled), a 27” TV, and about 4 large boxes of stuff.  Then there were the things Orcas bound: 3 boxes of Christmas presents for the grandkids, the huge cooler with the frozen roast and turkey, a case of wine and some things for the kitchen – you know, a hand mixer, 15 or 20 cookie cutters, a complete set of knives, and half of the pantry.  Then there was the set of chains, emergency road kit, and… well, this little SUV looked like the vagabonds were on the move.  It was 2 days from here to Portland mostly in the rain, but it cleared as we were passing Mt. Shasta.  Awesomely beautiful.  Missed a shot of Shasta but caught one of this great neutered cone. 


In Portland we unloaded all the stuff for Bob and Carolyn and learned Carolyn couldn’t get off work so she and Bob weren’t going to make it to Orcas.  Bummer.  Real Bummer.  But jobs are important – especially when it is a new one - along with a new house.  So we repacked the car and at 5:00am next morning left with the kids in a driving rain for Seattle.  I really love passing those 20-wheeler trucks when a tidal wave blinds you for 3 minuets. We made great time, but it was tense.  Vic had come in early to work with some Community Trust folks in Seattle, and we collected her ahead of schedule.  She had about 4 more bags than we had room for, but we squeezed everything in and made Anacortes with plenty of time for the noon ferry to Orcas.  


Waiting for the Ferry, Vic enchants Freya.

So our no hassle Christmas took 3 days just to get started, and that didn’t count the 2 days of preparation back home.  But the joys were about to begin as we got on board the ferry.  Instantaneously the water, the islands, the calm weaved their magic and we know it was going to be a magic Christmas.  Especially with the grandkids who had never been on a ferry, never been on a relatively remote island.  We were going to be rejuvenated by their discovery! 

Dietrich & instant Friend fed their popcorn to the gulls.

 On to Orcas!