Wednesday, July 4, 2012


When I was a kid THE thing to do in the summer was go for a picnic. We used to do it all the time. And it seemed like a big deal- my mom was used to it, but I know she and my grandmother put a lot of work into it. Giant batches of potato salad, and cake or a cobbler, and sometimes we grilled, but mostly we ate pasties (meat pies- that I still crave today). 

When our kids were kids I don't remember going on a lot of picnics- as they left and went their way we've done it less and less.  We live in a beautiful spot, so feeling in the mood to pack up the car and head elsewhere seems kind of silly.

However, today we just got in the mood. After working in the garden for a couple of hours, we dug around in the frig and pantry and came up with some lovely little tidbits, perfect for an impromptu picnic.

Almost ready to go...

can't forget the flowers, no paper plates for me, and linens please- it's the little things

We happen to be lucky enough to live on an island with a great state park, so that's where we headed. It's only a 5 minute drive, but seems worlds away. We brought a blanket and a couple of beach chairs, the camera (of course), champagne, sunglasses and smiles.

Our perch today was at the far northern reaches of Fort Flagler over looking Puget Sound on the Salish Sea. Place of my home, place of my heart.

The views all around us are pretty spectacular, with tall ships coming and going, and ferry boats shuffling tourists to and from Port Townsend.

We unfolded our blanket and chairs, and set up our tasty treats.

Marcona almonds, local cheeses, crackers, pear, prosciutto wrapped asparagus, olives, local smoked salmon, sparkling water, champagne, and local chocolates...not the picnic of my youth, but what else could one need?

no that is my kind of meal

And we had entertainment- para-gliders hovering over the cliffs, Cliff and barn swallows doing their low flying maneuvers, and gulls and Arctic terns high above. The gliders were silent in their sailing, and it looked so peaceful as they hovered about the cliffs curving this way and that in the breeze. The swallows sped lightning fast just inches above the field dining on the bugs coming out in the new found sunshine. The gulls flew in groups overhead, relatively quiet while their counterparts, the terns squawked like Pterodactyls (an eerie sound at best).

We basked in the sun with no one around us (which was a little surprising), and finally a small group of people walked by with a greeting, and then island neighbors stroll by commenting on the spectacular day. Soon we were alone in the sun and quiet again, closing our eyes to soak up all the warmth of the glorious afternoon sun.

We lingered a while longer, took a moment to take in the views one last time before heading home for a couple of hours to relax before the evening fireworks activities begin. We have a great view from our place across the water, and hopefully can catch a glimpse from our deck and avoid the insanity.

We are awaiting the twilight and the 'witching hour' for the fireworks to begin. Out here on the island, with all the campers and revelers at the park, I can't help but think of all the poor critters domestic and wild that are having a hard time with all the bangs and whistles of fireworks going off. I know it's engrained in our culture to do this (I suppose it's better than shooting off guns into the air), but I feel for all the creatures that have to endure this, knowing they are so terribly frightened right now...we're celebrating quietly- I just don't feel that all that noise is necessary.

Happy 4th all...

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