Every Town has its Ghosts

_DSC2186Ghosts are good for business, and Port Townsend, Washington has its fair share of stories. Manresa Castle is haunted by a heartbroken woman, whose love never returned from the Great War, and a Jesuit priest. A Lady in White wanders the grounds of Point Wilson Lighthouse and is, allegedly, a bit of a snoop; she is forever rummaging through drawers of the keeper’s quarters. Fort Worden has its orbs and Man in Blue. I imagine if you started inquiring, every building downtown would have some sort of strange occurrence or shadowy figure. Sensitive people claim to “feel” their energy.

Whether the stories are true or not, they add an element of mystery and adventure to a trip, and this is one of the reasons I love visiting Port Townsend. I only ever feel “haunted” when I’m in the town’s antique stores, though. There’s something about being surrounded by the wares of a thousand departed souls that really gets to me. Maybe one of these days when I’m wandering around with my camera, I’ll catch something other than a landscape.

Here are a few shots from my last weekend trip. Anything look out of the ordinary to you?

Point Wilson Lighthouse and Grounds





Fort Worden







Port Townsend

I spent most of my time at Point Wilson and Fort Worden, so I didn’t have many shots of town. What did fascinate me was the Tarot card reader who is parked along the main street. Her boots are just visible beyond the door.



Back on Whidbey Island and safe from ghosts!

Woodinville Lavender


When planning your winery tour of Woodinville this summer, add Woodinville Lavender farm to the itinerary. The fields are in full bloom and worth a stroll. My friend Sarah and I stopped by yesterday, and despite the scorching temperatures, we had fun clipping a couple small bundles of lavender.






Lavender Fields


Just when you thought the Pacific Northwest couldn’t possibly get anymore beautiful, lavender shoots up and rolls like great purple waves across Washington fields. I am not sure why I haven’t paid any attention  in previous years, but apparently I live within a couple hours of some very stunning fields. Lacking the time to find any of them this weekend, I made a short day trip out to Lummi Island with a couple of friends and found a small farm to take a few pictures instead.

The Sequim Lavender Farm Faire runs from July 19 – 21… It’s a bit of a journey from where I live, but it may be worth it to get a few late afternoon shots of some fields later this month. Anyone out there have any favorite fields either along the I-5 corridor or on the Olympic Peninsula?


Along the Lummi Shore

Some days I feel like I’ve thoroughly explored everything along the I-5 corridor with my camera, so when I wake up feeling shooty (to steal my friend Oona’s word), I often find myself wondering where to take the old Nikon.

I called my neighbor Andy on Sunday morning and asked if he felt like a photo walk, which of course he did. I was hoping he’d have some location ideas, which of course he didn’t. Brunch and several cups of coffee inpsired nothing, so we just decided to get in his truck and start driving.

We ended up on the Lummi Indian Reservation, which runs along the coast of Washington, just north of Bellingham. When most people think of beaches, I imagine they envision white sand and sunshine. When I think of beaches, I think of what the Pacific Northwest has to offer: rocks and clamshells crunching under foot, cold wind, and eagles perching quietly in the gnarled, bare trees above the shore.

I have more pictures not posted here (one of an eagle!) which I still need to look at. I have a four day weekend coming up, and I’m going to use some of that time to get caught up on photo editing. My Smugmug account is now permanently closed, and I have to work on re-creating all of my albums on Zenfolio. But, I consider that a good opportunity to purge photos I never really liked and to whittle down to only the best ones.



The Parable of Insensible Shoes

I love shoes.  One of my favorites is a pair of purple-soled Kensies I’d purchased for my first trip to Europe several years ago.  I happened to be wearing those this afternoon when I decided to take the long way home from work with my Nikon.  If they’re good enough for Rue de Paris, they’re good enough for Larrabee State Park, right? 

If I’d stuck to the trail, perhaps. 

I spotted a musician perched on a boulder, overlooking the water with his guitar.   And what was I supposed to do?  Walk barefoot over the rocks to get to him?   And after I’d finished photographing him, was I supposed to ignore the girl who found the starfish on the rocky beach below?

Thank God I have great balance.

I think the moral to this story is to always keep a change of shoes in the car.  The sun actually does come out in the Pacific Northwest on occasion – one must be prepared!

The tunnel that leads to the beach
The musician that lured me to the end of that boulder...a little bit to close to the edge for my comfort (in heels), but I got a great photo!


And who could resist the slight curl of his lip and the gentle stroking of that guitar? Not me!


I had to balance across hundreds of slippery stones to get this. Worth it?


Rock heart someone thoughtfully left for me to find!


Me and my Kensies...taking a little break.


One final snapshot on the way back to the car. The lighting here was darn near perfect!

Living in the Pacific Northwest

As I walked away from breakfast yesterday morning, hot coffee cup warming my hands, camera bag on my back, and raindrops collecting on my eyelashes, I smiled.   To live happily in the Pacific Northwest, one must learn to accept the ever-present clouds and look for something beautiful to photograph on all of those gray days. 

The quick trip I made to Port Townsend this weekend for my friend Erica’s birthday not only afforded a few snapshots, but a few chance meetings and new discoveries.  It was a great weekend.  And because I need to save my energy for the two American Lit papers I still need to write today, I’ll stop here and just show you the pictures….

Eagle sighting distracted me, and I missed my ferry by five minutes. I was actually okay with that!


A little red on the gray-blue horizon
A glimpse of a lighthouse behind a colorful hillside
A little bit of color along the road
At Fort Worden State Park


Rust, peeling paint, and a shallow DOF...this is what I love!

Be Happy

I was socializing and shopping tonight, so I didn’t take any photos.   I’d say that’s okay once a week.  🙂

The sun has been a scarce thing in the Pacific Northwest recently.  Big surprise there – it’s December.  So, when I was going through some photos tonight, I found this – actually from just a couple of weeks ago.  It made me happy to see what the world looks like illuminated by sunshine.  It reminded me that no matter how much rain falls, how windy it gets, and how long the grey skies last, Spring will eventually return. 

There is one story I’d like to share from today, though.  There isn’t a picture to go with it.   As I was driving to work this morning, I realized I’d left my ID badge, driver’s license, and debit card at home (since they’re all together).  I was too close to work to turn around, but I was nearly out of gas as well and knew I’d need to refill to make it home .

Two cool things happened.  First, I found a $25 gift card to Fred Meyer at work.  Not only does Fred Meyer have food, it has a gas station.   But, even if I hadn’t found the gift card, my good friend David basically offered me $50 to get through the day.    I really do have to say, I have great friends.  I’m sure that no matter what happens in my life, I’ll always land on my feet because I’m surrounded by the best people on the planet.  🙂

I’d also like to throw in a Happy Birthday to my stylish, fun, and pretty much all around awesome friend, KIM who is turning 40!  

Have a happy Friday everyone!