Sunday, August 31, 2008

Sights from Olympia

Where I spent my summer holidays.....

I spent my summer sleeping in a terrarium with a view of the stars and moon, spent my days on the ocean sailing past fjords and stepping over old lava floes in the cold waters of the northern Pacific.

Ok, so I didn't spend my whole summer doing that. But I did spend a week doing precisely these things - does that count? Of course it does!

We went to Olympia, Washington on August 8 for my sister-in-law Jodi's wedding as well as to pay a long overdue visit to my sister Kay, whose been inviting me to see that part of the world for the last 30+ years. I would have gone a lot sooner if I'd known just how special it really is! I truly felt at home here - I joked that given another 36 hours in Olympia, I would have opened a dog/human yoga and art studio in downtown and started serving berry cobbler from organically grown vintage raspberry bushes.

I met so many wonderful people, ate some of the best food (always a big vacation make or break area for me - I LOVE food), drank some good beer, and just relaxed in nature. I've been wanting to go to the ocean for a while, but it's not really something you want to do here in Florida during the summer - too hot. I loved that the ocean is just a normal part of people's lives up there, you take a ferry as a viable mode of transportation. You can see the ocean, and the mountains, and the tall trees around every turn. It's also a very environmentally and politically conscious place - when you go to a wedding where everyone brings their dogs, there are people of many races, ages, and circumstances and they're just people together without judgement, and there are readings from Native American, Buddhist, Christian, and Sufi philosophy as well as a sing-along in Sanskrit, well, I've found my people.

But enough words, this is an art blog, so I know you want to see pictures. The picture you see at the top of the post is the view from the guest room (aka the terrarium) at my sister's house. I'm calling it the terrarium because the bed is built into a window that juts out from the house into the forest that is her backyard. At the foot of the hill is a small lake that we went kayaking on after a breakfast of the shiniest plumpest Ranier cherries, organic cheeses, and fresh baked pastries from the local farmer's market.

Speaking of farmer's market! Olympia is reckoned to have the "second best farmers market in the state" - presumably after the rather better known Pike's Market in Seattle. I've been to both, and I have to say, I liked the Olympia one better. Beautiful produce and flowers, handmade clothes, soaps, organic everything, a jazz band, it was awesome. Here are some local blueberries - don't you just want to grab a handful?

We also went to visit my sister's property out on the south Puget Sound - next time we visit they'll have built their weekend beach house out there - clean rain-swept wind, ocean mists and wildflowers...
Here's a few images from my sister-in-law's wedding - it was a very informal relaxed wedding by the shores of Capitol Lake in downtown Olympia, followed by a reception at their friend Tibor's farm (two pastures over from their house). They live in a small house in a wooded valley with a little stream rushing past the farm and fields that eventually ran to the Puget Sound.

Jodi and Doug had a beautiful day - it was rainy in the morning, but right on schedule at 4 p.m., the heavens cleared, the sun shone, and Jodi was married under a canopy of silk banners and hand-painted batik windsocks with a carpet of wildflowers and lillies at her feet.

Enough for now - got to work on my art journal - in the next post, I'll continue with my adventures in the Pacific Northwest with our visit to Vancouver, Vancouver Island, and Saltspring Island, plus my visit with Nick Bantock.

1 comment:

...Cindy... said...

It's so weird - the photos of the wedding are EXACTLY how I pictured it in my mind. It's great to have the visuals confirmed. I'm looking forward to more photos!