Ok ...patience please. Bandon reporting in with inept person using little keyboard. Fabulous day; balmy (almost); we spent all day crabbing off the dock in town. Thank the goddess for my daughter who can do everything, carry things, patient and wonderful. While she did all the heavy work, I visited with all the interesting people there. A couple from Stockton! We got 7 nice ones; got rained on the last 15 minutes; drenched but happy. To die for fish and chips at little blue shack for lunch; guy at bait shop cooked and cleaned our crabs while we drank icy cold Coronas. I asked for some Bacardi Limon in mine but had to settle for wedge of lime. Got loaf of hot French bread from bakery. Had warm crab, warm bread (slathered with soft butter), salad with 1000 island dressing I made for dinner. Chocolate for dessert. Gained at least 5 lb today ... Day 1. Next 2 days should be even nicer; will walk on the beach tomorrow. Our house is perfect; all sliders and windows open; sound of the ocean is constant. Have heat cranked up. Glad I'm not paying utilities. I love this; do not want daughter to leave ... I DON'T want to leave. Love this little town and the nice people here who are sweet, ready to help. No sales tax! Plus they pump your gas! I'm sorry I CAN'T comment on things; it is hard for me to use little keyboards.
Little keyboard in Bandon, Or, reporting in. Day 2. OMG glorious day in this little town tucked away on the Oregon Coast. People who stay on 101 have no idea that 1/2 mi from the highway is an amazing beach; and 3 blocks from the highway is the cutest little town ever. For me, being here today -- on a day with blue sky, sun, warm -- was like having a place hug you. I felt such peace and joy ... as if it was calling me here for a reason. I just don't know exactly how to tell The Husband I want to stay. We dropped our baited traps off the dock, then spent 2 hours on the beach. At the Jetty, the waves were amazing, crashing on the rocks; big waves, so many colors; so much power and sound. I sat on a log just transfixed for the longest time. Then we walked on the beach by our place. I didn't walk far, but sat behind some beach grass and my mind was flooded with memoriese of being here 23 years ago ... for 5 months with my cat (PJ) ... in this very house. I could almost feel him sitting next to me as he would so often do ... on the lookout for beach mice to play with. Great lunch: burgers and MORE fries at the Wheelhouse. Pulled up the traps -- 4 big ones! While Tony boiled and cleaned them, we had ice cream at the Fudge Factory. (May have to buy larger pants.) Then more time on the beach; I found 2 agates; got caught by a sneaker wave -- shoes and pants soaked. Our first sunset; then wind stopped! Balmy out, full moon. Thinking how amazingly lucky I am to have had this day. More good weather coming ... except for one tire in my car leaking air ... could not be better. I'm thinking flat tire would be perfect reason to stay longer. Wish I could share this all with you. I want to come back for a month or two next Spring and write my book. Just one tiny hurdle: well perhaps a couple. But this place is truly special ... and I feel as if I have come home.
Little keyboard reporting in from Bandon, OR. Another lovely day, sun and blue sky with little wind. 4 big keeper crabs. Sweet daughter leaving tomorrow. I will miss her, but finally I get the great bedroom ... with the sliders to the deck facing the ocean. I've been looking for a special necklace for the last year and found it today in a small gallery that sells items by local artists. This is called "wearable art" created by a young man near Coos Bay. It is a Labradorite pendant on a "chain" made with tiny shells and beads of amber and other things. As soon as I saw it, I knew it was the one. It came with a tiny card that says: "Labradorite is a stone of magic, awakening within you mystical and magical abilities and psychic powers. It has within it a deeply felt resonance that is very powerful and can bring amazing changes to your life. Wearing it seems to charge you with a sense of excitement and adventure, to take the steps required to go where you have not gone before." I'm ready! Tonight we had one of those sunsets that fills you with awe, leaving a painted sky long after the sun had slipped behind the horizon. I watched until the last streak of red faded and then disappeared. One strip of clouds was filled with shimmering ballet dancers; another with bold strokes of golds and oranges and pinks. Finishing touches on a perfect day.
Dorothy Hajek Haase Posted in the wrong place Thurs, Oct. 13:
Brief report from On the Scene in Bandon where the last colors from the sunset reluctantly give way to night. All is calm except for the never-ending sound of the ocean. Hard to imagine leaving all this behind. The magic of the new necklace is apparently working overtime. Last night there was an earthquake 140 miles off the coast of Bandon as the Juan de Fuca and Pacific Plates slid past each... other in a horizontal motion. A tsunami would have indeed put a damper on this perfect escape. Then ... early dinner out with an old friend ... having the most delightful thing I've ever had: Zucchini Blossoms, stuffed with shrimp and basil and cheese, then lightly breaded in some kind of melt-in-your-mouth mixture, then fried to perfection. Served with a dipping sauce made with Mayo, lemon juice, and saffron. We both licked the little bowls with the extra sauce we ordered. The daughter told me I must have those. Just sorry she was not here to enjoy them with me. Will post pictures from this amazing get-away next week. My photographer has been re-assigned to Wenatchee. I wonder what tomorrow will bring?
Friday night report from On the Scene in Bandon. No sunset tonight, but lights of fishing boat off in the distance -- lights appearing and disappearing as the boat navigates a course through the swells in the ocean. Another lovely day here; learned that October is the best month to be here. How lucky am I?! I love the continuity of a place like this. A seat carved out in a big rock formation on the beach, where I sat more than a decade ago, is still there for me to sit on today. It was a great spot to watch the incoming tide and variety of beach walkers. My favorites are the dogs, who run along the beach with glee, barking at seagulls or sticks or kelp. There were horses, too, with riders from the Bandon Stables. I sold them a poster years ago with a picture I took of a beautiful Arabian horse on the beach at sunset. They of course have nags, but it made for good advertising. The town is filled with friendly, interesting people. Talked to a man today from Bishop, CA. I remember fishing with my dad at a mountain lake above Bishop where it was so cold, my worm froze solid before it hit the water. No agates at Bullard's Beach, but saw the sweet Bandon lighthouse. Headed for the jetty, but was put off by the sign that said "proceed at your own risk; structure unstable." 20 years ago, I breezed right by the sign, leaped over the logs, and sat on the jetty with the waves coming so close they threatened to snatch me from my perch. But now, I am more cautious. Instead, I stopped for just-out-of-the-oven French bread from the bakery at Ray's (fragrance filled my car on the way home to smear with soft butter). Somehow my house key, to which I tied a piece of dental floss for lack of something better, slipped out of my pocket on my way into the store. But I found a lucky penny inside (where I had to buy a newspaper to find out what has happened in the world), and when I re-traced my footsteps I found my key lying on the pavement behind a big SUV. All I could think of is how would I find someone with a ladder, so I could climb up onto the deck and in thru the open sliding glass door. The fire dept perhaps? I have since put the key on my keychain. Finished a gin and tonic, strictly for medicinal purposes after all the walking today. Now for fresh crab and some salad and the chocolate eclair left from the night before. Life is good. Happy Friday Night to all from Beautiful Bandon by the Sea.
This is the last report from On the Scene in Bandon. It is Saturday night and all is well ... except I was going to get an order of Fried Stuffed Zucchini Blossoms (with extra dipping sauce) to go ... and they ran out last night! So instead I had a tasty Crab Louie, slathered with 1000 island dressing I made myself; followed by a bit of rich, creamy chocolate praline fudge from the Fudge Factory. It was a relaxing day - with nowhere to be and no commitments. Especially enjoyable for my last day. Time is all we have, and we don't know how much or how little there will be. So what a gift it is to have a whole day to spend with yourself in a magical place ... doing exactly what you want. (Tomorrow it will be back to my life at A Houseful of Rabbits, as The Husband calls his daily blog.) I walked down the beach to my special seat in the rocks, watching the waves coming in and the gulls drifting overhead. Then I wracked my brain to find the words to describe the sound of the ocean here ... and I cannot. Not yet. There are layers of sounds: one that is always there in the background, constant and pervasive. And then the other one that changes with the ever persistent waves, as they advance and retreat endlessly. The ocean is powerful and dangerous ... and yet tranquil and healing. Perhaps that's why I'm so drawn to it. Especially here in this place, on this stretch of beach, littered with these particular rocks. My last sunset was brief but tantalizing, promising to be better when I return next year. When the last colors fade from the sky, the wind calms and peace drifts over the beach ... and especially over me.
Epilogue: Trek from Bandon to Bow. Photographer is currently MIA; hope to post pix this week. Drive home was such fun, although 500 miles in one day is a bit much for someone of my vintage. Truly a scenic drive from Bandon north on 101 and then east along the Umqua River in full autumn splendor. Mocha with a triple shot in the tiny town of Drain (named after the founder) was a real help; ditto with running the A/C on high to keep awake while being swept along in the flow of speeding cars on I-5. Pure joy was crossing over the Columbia River and then seeing: "Rest Stop next exit." CD player cranked up with some Gordon Lightfoot (remember "Rainy Day People"?); El Divo (ooh ... ladies you will love these guys); then "Love at the Greek" recorded live by Neil Diamond in 1976. What great music! "Brother Love's Salvation Show" written so long ago, yet perfect for the contemporary political scene. And of course "Jonathan Livingston Seagull" as the score for the closing credits of my journey. It's always a welcome sight for the weary traveler to crest the hill at Conway and see the Skagit Valley spread out below, with the San Juan Islands in the distance and the Olympic Mountains beyond. Home was near. And waiting to welcome me were adorable bunnies, an aloof cat, an understanding husband, lots of plants and flowers, and a soft bed. It was an absolutely perfect trip for me. Thank you for caring enough to be interested in that special little place tucked away on the Southern Oregon Coast.