The lit sign on the freeway said the nearest border crossing wait was twenty minutes, but in reality it wasn't. I'll get into that in a minute.
Our day trip was a last minute decision. I love that we can be spontaneous and venture to places not our own. I'm glad I renewed my passport, I forgot what I was missing out on.
You could see from the freeway that the clouds were breaking up to the south. I felt a pang of excitement because we were heading that way, leaving behind the perpetual string of menacing clouds that have been drifting through BC for weeks. The prospect of clear sky's and adventure might have (no it did) possess the child in me with a bounce in my seat and a quick grab of my husbands arm, in excitement. Lately I've been letting go like this-theatrical like, in the efforts of smoothing out the frown lines of prior days in my husband. I find its terribly therapeutic to act silly (sometimes), at least for me. Its my new mantra! with no notions of purple or red. Salmon colour all the way! and flouncy white linen.
The border line was minimal, curling slightly around the corner-three lanes total, one being the nexus lane for members who paid extra for speed. We moved one car length at a time, and sat, then moved, then sat, until we were moving no more. The nexus lane however, became popular with non-members who began to cut into our lane ahead. It was a bald-face-act of entitlement. We see it from time to time on either side of the borders, but nothing like this blatant disregard for others obeying the rules.
It wasn't long before two Canadian custom officers came out of the building to turn back the weasels who budded in. Justice was served! As for the US border? they opened another booth, and we passed over the quickly.
We ventured down a road (less traveled?) just off of the Mount Baker highway. We followed three semi trucks from Canada that seemed to know where they were going. It was a beautiful drive, to say the least. The road wound around mountains, and spilled into valleys--where dots of forgotten and rusty towns hung onto life under the present sun. Farms and ranches and old buildings with crooked seams, and old groves of timber and swaying grasslands with bogs, is what met us through a pleasant 45 minute drive before we came out to the town we've been before, Sedroe Wolley.
The last time we were at Sedroe Wolley-- was years ago for our daughter's ball tournament.
The old town was open and bustling with a street party where food trucks expelled the scents of onions and hot dogs and cotton candy. The ball field too, was bustling with teen-girls competing from the US and Canada. No one cared who won the tournament, it was a grand weekend.
Now, present day, we find a ghost town within the old part of Sedroe Wolley. We park and wander along the street. It looks like a day version of what painter Linden Fredrick might have painted, its lonely and exempt of people. For an early Saturday afternoon this struck us odd, however much, a few neon signs in store fronts broke the spell. Eventually we passed a human--of the teen years and I spontaneously found humour in asking him, "what did you do with all the people?" he laughed, of course, and kept walking.
And then we came upon an old-burned-out-building, and another human looking lonely as sin, for he walked among the cinders (security guard).
I don't know the story of the building or what ignited it's down fall. But the image met me with a gasp and falling heart from which moves in such a way--when witnessing the fall of history. I had a dozen of questions whirling in my mind, but no one to ask. Secretly I wanted to poke around the building for old treasures-a few old bricks or door knobs, but clearly the building wasn't safe. And I wouldn't remove anything that wasn't mind. Curse of the zombies.
The next place we planted our walking feet was, Anacortes, in Skagit County. This is a great seaside town.
I was thrilled to see the up-to-date-preservation of the old buildings, and the dwellings that included, inviting coffee shops, gift shops, and to our surprise! many antique/thrift shops.
This antique, and thrift store I utterly loved!
This place, folks, is a haven for interior decorator's who get all excited over different eras. I picked up a large, vintage style print for only $4 dollars, and the coolest, new patio lantern with white twinkle light wrapped around a white, mesh, globe-for $5 dollars. But that's nothing compared to the deals they offer on their antique furniture. I saw the most adorable, antique, writing table painted in white. It had the most precious upper doors in small pain glass-and a sold sign. Duh.
From what we take on this store its only open once a month, and buys estate sales. I can't tell you how one can get very excited over other people's treasure! always a grand story left behind, least for your imagination.
We'll be back next month. Just because.
While exploring Anacortes, we came across another gem. Although you could consider this antique store more of a museum than anything. My imagination simply went wild when we entered the upstairs bedrooms full of life stories and heirlooms.
It was getting close to dinner when we rolled into La Conner, another seaside town. The drive was short and sweet. Soon as we got out of the car we were hit with nostalgia with our kids. Before there was Lil, there was Tee, who stopped traffic with her bright red hair and blue eyes. It didn't matter whether we were in Canada or visiting the United states, we were stopped all the time with folks smiling and talking with little Tee. But then Lil came along six years later with her mop of red hair. All together we were a walking show. It was so funny and cute.
La Conner is a wonderful place to visit, what with its old buildings and stores lining the street up from the water front. Its a magnet for tourist's, sauntering in and out of stores with gorgeous blown glass, antiques, gifts stores, and many eatery's. That particular day we could smell steak simmering on a grill somewhere.
We came across this big beauty with more growth-life-lines than I could count. I'm not entirely certain of the tree history, I tried to look it up to no avail. But I imagine, Skagit County was full of these enormous beauties at one time, and might still be.
From me to you, hope you enjoyed the adventure.