A couple of years ago, I went to the beach with my mom and Kid the Younger and my friend Kelly and her family. It was a fun trip, but not terribly relaxing because we were on the go constantly. Hit all the tourist traps in Newport, Oregon (Ripley’s, Aquarium, etc, etc). Plus, her husband was fighting a kidney stone and was pretty miserable the whole time.
This time she picked a beach house (rental) that was SPECTACULAR! Right on the beach, on top of a bluff. This is the view from the back yard.
We could not have ordered better weather – sunny the whole time except for the last night, when we got to watch a storm blow in at great speed at sunset. We got there before we could check in to the house, so we had time for a leisurely lunch and a walk on the pier by the restaurant.
Saturday we scoped out the possibilities for crabbing after a walk on the beach. The local glass artists do a “glass drop” on specific weekends, and this was an extra special one. Not the normal glass floats; they were doing glass crabs and sand dollars. Kelly and her husband came down to the beach but didn’t walk much, but Brenda & I walked above the tide line for about a mile and a half, then walked the tide line looking for natural goodies. It was high tide, so we didn’t find anything. After driving to look at crabbing spots, Brenda and I went back for another walk in the other direction at low tide. We both found some goodies, including this pair of starfish that we put back in the water. I also found a real nice shell about the size of my thumb and some nice agates. No blown glass (insert pouty face here).
Sunday, we got crab pots (each of us chose a different type to test) and our licence. Then off to the pier to try our luck. We had set a chicken out the night before so we had stinky bait. Everyone was putting their pots off one side of the pier. I march to a different drummer, so mine went off the other side. Because I wasn’t sure how my shoulder and back would react to hauling the pot up, so I barely let it settle before I pulled it up, along with a nice Dungeness crab inside! Unfortunately, I misread the gauge, and sent him back to the water. Figured out later that he was actually a keeper (they have to be male, and at least 5 3/4 inches across the back). Second attempt pulled up a red rock crab. Pretty soon, more people were on my side of the pier. We had a bit of luck, but not enough to feed everyone. Still, I caught my dinner, and I will be going back soon to do it again. Everyone else in the group got cold, but I was having a blast and would have stayed longer if I’d taken my car! Mine is the smaller dark one top right and bottom left, and they were very yummy.
I also got to see a pelican up close and personal. I thought I had seen one earlier in the day, on top of a structure in the bay, but no one else was agreeing with me. When most of the group went for lunch, I stayed to crab. The pelican landed on the pier, muscled his way into a group of gulls fighting over bait on the walkway and stole it all. He gulped it into his pouch, then flew down to the water to eat. I love seeing pelicans because they always remind me of my grandpa. Anytime we would see one, he would recite:
A wondrous bird is the pelican
His beak can hold more than his belly-can
He can hold in his beak enough food for the week
I wonder how in the hell-i-can
I did get in some knitting time, and the Monster Socks of Doom are now finished. I wasn’t very disciplined about working on them, so they took forever. I don’t know if I’ll be doing anything like this again. The pay was good (a ton of hay), but they were BORING! As a reward, I have started on a sweater for myself from yarn that I had made from my home-grown fiber. It’s a soft brown that will go with lots of things. It will take a while, since I’m not built like a super model (more like super sized), but I’m in no hurry. I will interrupt working on this with holiday knitting, so that will slow me down too.