Postcard from Lopez

I’m not sure why, but things seem to happen sometimes to force me to slow down. Like last week when my back went out. It’s like I go and go, piling things high on my plate and running myself down until my body just ups and quits, like it’s screaming at me to stop. Enough already!
It’s like how I always say that I can’t sleep in. I’ve been awake by 6:30 practically everyday this summer, ready to take on the day and my list full of projects. But it’s funny how as soon as I ended up on Lopez Island for a little overnight get away with my girl friends how quickly things changed. How easily my body let go and slept as long as I needed. I think one morning I slept until*gasp* 8:30! That’s how I know I needed this.

Two days after the Louise fiasco that I thought was going to prevent me from even going on this trip, which we had put on the calendar months ago. But everything just sort of fell into place and I ended up on the ferry and transported to a world where my fantasies live.

A place where you frequent local, organic farm stands all over the island. Where you hear roosters crowing in the background when you get out of the car to see what they’ve got.

Where you go into the quaint little shack, attended by no one, pick out what you’d like, and pay using the honor system. It’s that kind of community.

It’s the kind of place where every car you pass, you give them a little wave. Your hands are on the steering wheel and as the other person driving towards you comes in sight, you lift your thumb, pointer and middle finger off the wheel and casually point towards the other person. A modern day tip of the hat.

It’s the kind of place where you decide to take the plunge and try fresh shellfish even though you think you don’t like it. When in Rome. You can’t help it when you arrive at another farm stand, this time with fresh shellfish, and watch as your friends carefully spoon the oysters and clams into a plastic bag. Where back at home you decide, you know what, these aren’t half bad!

Lopez is the kind of place where you go to the local bakery, which is closed during the winter so the owners can ski. A bakery that is so filled with local goodness, you don’t know what to choose. Maybe the pesto-filled croissant that holds a hard boiled egg. Or the marionberry “danish” with the just slightly crisp, cinnamon dusted crust that looks like no other danish I’ve ever seen. It’s the kind of bakery where you make sure to try all the samples cut up on the counter because if not, you know you’re missing something amazing. It’s the kind of place where you buy a delicious baguette that’s stuffed with brie and caramelized onions or kalamata olives for lunch, which you devour with the heirloom tomatoes you just bought at one of the farm stands.

It’s the kind of place where an afternoon run means running through a thicket of pine trees (or maybe they’re cedars) only to emerge onto a grassy trail that snakes you around the beautiful coast. Where you run on a trail through tall, dry grasses that make you want to stretch out your arms and feel them as you pass. It’s the kind of scenery that makes you burst out into a playful skip, making kid-like yells. This doesn’t feel like a workout. It feels like play, where if you were tired or sore, you wouldn’t know it because your mind is too busy taking in all of the sights and sounds to be preoccupied with worry or discomfort.

It’s a place where you can put your body and life on reset. A place where I was lucky enough to go to relax and recharge with good friends. Where I got to be a passenger, so I could gaze off into the countless fields and farms we passed and imagine I lived there, with happy cows and sheep out to pasture. Oh, and oysters too.

Wish you were here!


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