Thursday, August 15, 2013

roche harbor, san juan island

San Juan Island. It felt like Hannah's Woodland meets the island from Moonrise Kingdom, with a hint of Abbey's lake. When we got off the boat from Seattle in Friday Harbor, one of my first thoughts was how Canadian it looked. I mean, I have never been to Canada, but I think that this was very close. Friday Harbor was like a Canadian version of Richard Scarry's Busytown. It was small and cute but we spent most of our time on the other side of the island at Roche Harbor. We stayed in these cabins which also made it feel like camp. It reminded me of a lot of different places, clearly. 

It was really beautiful. These pictures don't even come close to showing that, but that's just one of those things you have to live with as someone who takes pictures.

We saw deer and dogs and horses and bald eagles (#merica). We roasted s'mores (favorite summer tradition). We walked into the little town (that's probably a little generous) and all the way to the end of the dock, past $7 million boats and the terrible smell of fish. We (some of us) biked 22 miles one day to go whale-watching. It was all beautiful.

But the most beautiful thing I didn't get any pictures of at all. It was the last night. We ate dinner at this restaurant, that white building with lights around the roof. It was a nice restaurant and I had a delicious meal of vegetables and mashed potatoes and lots and lots of bread. Since we were a large party, I guess, we had a whole room upstairs and a balcony all to ourselves. Every night, down on the docks they had a flag-lowering ceremony (another reason it felt like camp) where they played the national anthems of Canada, America and maybe England as they took down the respective flags and shot off a canon and at the end all the boats in the harbor would sound their horns at the same time. We watched this on the balcony before our dinner came and then watched the next display: the sunset. It was one of the Top 10 sunsets I've seen in my life, probably. It was so pretty that the next morning, our taxi driver asked, "Did you see the sunset last night?" The sky was streaked with the most outrageous shades of pink until at the last moment it got dark. And when it was dark, walking back to the cabins in the cold, we could hear the music from a wedding reception across the street, drifting over. It was a good last night.


  1. Reading your writing is always such a treat, and I'm not just saying that for flattery's sake. You're real, good, and honest. The pictures are the cherry on top of the sundae.

  2. Eeeeee! It always makes me happy when somebody finds themselves out in the San Juans. We're Orcas people (we have a nineteenth century farmhouse out there), but all the San Juans are beautiful. This year we took the Interisland to Friday Harbor, too. Ahhh, the San Juans just make me happy. :) And I now I want to make it to Roche Harbor, after my mom's stories and reading this!


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