Stuck in Florida
This is Vancouver. The place is remarkable in what I guess many would consider an unremarkable way. But unlike many others, my wife, Maley, and I are seeing it for the first time in a long time. We’re noticing what has changed and what has remained the same.
You see, it’s the first time we have been here in a year and eight months. Let me explain. When I retired four years ago as editor of The Columbian, we began wintering in Florida. We’d always come back and spend our summers here. But then COVID-19 hit and we ended up stuck in Florida last summer.
There is much to miss about Vancouver summers, especially the weather. This is as good as it gets anywhere.
So we were happy when the plane’s wheels touched down at PDX a few days ago.
The drive home
We bumped along Interstate 205 on our way to our Salmon Creek home in a very jarring way. Was the surface always this bad? I think not. Whomever might be able to put some pressure on those who make resurfacing decisions should step up their game.
We also notice the encampments of the homeless that appear to stretch for miles. This isn’t new but it’s growing. I get that our best and brightest are working on this exponentially growing problem, but we’re losing this battle. And, honestly, I don’t think we will ever win it.
The rat-a-tat-tat of drills and hammers and saws is everywhere. We maneuvered our way through the endless construction and concluded this is a very good sight. Maybe some of this will help those who need housing. But will it make a significant dent in the problem?
We head back to our home. We enjoy living in Salmon Creek. Our neighbors have always been so kind, friendly and helpful. Garry — our neighbor a few doors down — has been keeping an eye on our place while we’ve been gone and has done too much for me to mention.
Bill and Sandy — more good neighbors — let our cable guy in earlier this week when our flight here was delayed. Thanks!
As we cruise up Northwest Bliss Road we see bikers and joggers and walkers, all enjoying themselves. And that’s what living here should be all about, right? Enjoying ourselves.
No one knows what tomorrow will bring. We certainly don’t know how long we will continue these cross-country trips twice a year, shutting down one home and starting up another. But as we pull into our driveway, we sure are happy to be here.
Now if I can just get my hands on some good chinook salmon.