Detail from "Rain Dance," an original quilt by Sherrie Spangler

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

A storm at sea ...

Crossing from Whidbey Island to Pt. Townsend, WA, on the ferry.

Your intrepid reporter got confused on the last post. I thought I had told you about the storm at sea, but I didn't. So here is my dispatch.

We arrive at the ferry departure point on Whidbey Island, reservations in hand for the ferry to Pt. Townsend:

That's us in line with the kayaks on top of the Toyota Venza. Have you seen the TV ads for the Venza, the ones where the grown kids worry that their empty-nester parents will be bored without them? Then the ads cut to the parents laughing as they unload their outdoor gear from the Venza and take off on their mountain bikes/horses/whatever. I guess we fit the demographic.

Here's another view from the ferry landing.
Notice the threatening clouds.
Anyway, the sky was very dark and the winds were gusting at gale force, so they told us they might not be able to cross. The last trip had been canceled and our boat was being tossed around out in the water because the captain didn't know if he could dock it safely. Veteran ferriers that we are, we were prepared to wait. We pulled out our sandwiches, chocolate bars, coffee and books and settled in along with everyone else in line. An hour or two later they decided to take a chance and we all drove on.

Here's a view from inside the ferry. It was rocking so much that they tied all the doors shut and roped off the stairways. That was a first for us.

It was sort of exciting!

Instead of a straight crossing, the captain had to zig zag into the wind, which meant a lot of VERY sharp turns that left us looking down into the maelstrom. The first time it happened he didn't warn us what he was doing and I thought we might be capsizing. He also hadn't warned us yet to stay in our seats, so people were staggering all over the place like drunken pirates, trash cans were sliding around and I hated to think about the poor people in the restrooms.

I still wasn't too worried, though, because I didn't think the state of Washington would put itself in the position of drowning hundreds of tourists, what with liability issues.

Before they told us to stay seated I managed to get a few shots of some of the art in the main deck. I'm a really big fan of public art and would hate to see it go away.

Our boat was the Salish. Luckily we didn't need life preservers.

We made it safely to Pt. Townsend, where we had an excellent dinner in a snug little restaurant on the water called T's that also had excellent art. My photo isn't so excellent, but you can get the idea. It was nice to see something other than gray.

More updates later
on the water, skies, trees and art
of the Pacific Northwest!

Have a colorful day

1 comment:

The Idaho Beauty said...

Thanks for clearing that up - I was questioning my memory because how could the blog author NOT be right about what she'd already reported to us. vbg

Goodness, what a crossing! My only experience even remotely close would be crossing the bar out of Westport on a small whale watching boat. They didn't tie shut the doors, didn't even keep us from standing on the deck as it rose and fell through the huge troughs. I kept thinking someone could easily end up over the side and feared for my mother, who I spotted up-chucking over the rail! Glad you found your experience sort of exciting!