Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Signatures And Stone Soup

Mule overlooking downtown Port Angeles

We had a nice little break in the weather this morning, and since I have the day off, I took a little putt to run some errands. The above photo was taken from the overlook park off 2nd Street and gives a view of Downtown Port Angeles, with Ediz Hook at mirror level, and above the windshield.

Ediz Hook is a natural "spit" that creates our harbor, and parallels Port Angeles. It is home to Coast Guard Group Port Angeles at the eastern tip, and is about 4 miles from beginning to end. On a warm summer evening, "The Hook" is a gathering place for tourists, walkers, bicyclists and motorbikes. And with a perfect view of the city lights, it becomes the hot spot for the teenage boys and girls to get to know each other. For those of you familiar with the term "going to watch the submarine races" well, we really do have submarines in the Strait of Juan De Fuca, which is the body of water in the picture. It adds a degree of truth when asked why you got home so late.

Part of running errands today included a stop at Clallam County Courthouse. I had been asked by the clerk in the auditors office to come down and fill out a signature card to verify that the name written on my ballot was truely mine. She actually called me at work! She said that the way I signed my name earlier this month, wasn't the was I signed it when I registered to vote. I said "No kidding, that was thirty years ago"! So I went in, and they had a gal "witness" me signing my name. She looked at it, then at my ballot in her hand, then said, "Oh, you did it perfect". She said that from "now on" my vote will count. It used to be the old way of voting, by going to a polling station and waiting to use a curtained booth where you would punch your ballot. Now we receive the ballot by mail, then fill in the spots and mail them back so a suspicious person can decide whether to let your vote count, or have you come down to prove that you are really YOU.

This fiasco was all forgotten though when I rode over to Kevin's pre-school class to join in the holiday "stone soup" story and lunch. I met Dena and little Joelle in the classroom, and we were joined by my Mother and Father in-law to hear the old story of how some old beggar taught a mean old lady how to make a magical soup out of boiling water and a rock. All of the children took part by adding plastic carrots, onions and other veggies to a plastic pot, then at stories end finding three crock pots filled with simmering soup in the kitchen of the classroom. Imagination is a wonderful thing.

We enjoyed soup, rolls, salad and pumpkin pie and hung out with the other parents and grandparents. The best part of this was the look on Kevin's face when his Daddy rolled in. That moment made my whole day.

After I left the school, I just took some time to ride aimlessly for a while. I had pretty much covered the whole town before I had gotten cold enough to want to head home. And riding in the cold when you have a cold is not a good mix. On the way home I saw a scooterist on what looked like a Honda Reflex. His reaction when he saw me was like a sighting of Bigfoot. He rubbernecked me so bad that I thought he was going to fall off his scoot. It made me laugh out loud. I'll be on the lookout to meet this guy.

Once I got home, I went out to start my Chinese 125cc Kung Pow scoot to let it run for a while since it hadn't been ridden in 2 weeks. I heard a light tapping noise from the airbox cover, so I pulled it to have a look. I found that a mouse was making a home out of it, so I'll have to screen it over tomorrow. He's been evicted.

Speaking of tomorrow...I wish all my new moto-friends a Happy Thanksgiving.

Have fun,



Blogger Combatscoot said...

In Coast Guard Aviation, Port Angeles is one of the hardest assignments to get. Everyone loves that place!
Happy Thanksgiving!

6:35 AM  
Blogger Bill Sommers said...

Living here all my life, you almost take for granted the Coast Guard base being here.
One thing is for sure, quite a few USCG retirees end up staying in P.A. and making their home here after their hitch is up.
It's an easy place to love.

7:40 PM  
Blogger Steve Williams said...

I've always wanted to be by the water instead of landlocked in the mountains of central Pennsylvania. My sailing dreams evaporated with the situation.

Port Angeles looks like a great place and the addition of the Ruckus only makes it better.

Can't believe they are looking so close at ballots that they find the discrepancy in signatures. I guess that's a good thing.


3:32 AM  
Blogger Bill Sommers said...

PA is unique in that, as the Chamber of Commerce says, "You can go from sea to ski in 30 minutes".
But as a home town clown, I've always wondered about areas such as yours to explore and ride in.
And about the whole ballot deal, after thinking it over, it is a good thing that it happened. I do believe in voting, and whatever it takes to make sure that I can continue is okay by me.

Have fun,

6:39 PM  

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