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Tuesday, April 30, 2013

POST 1107; APRIL 30, 2013; BELLINGHAM, WASHINGTON



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Try as I might, I have been unable to find a doctor or organization which will accept me as a patient.  No, I have NOT received any medical care since returning to Bellingham one week ago.  Tomorrow I will visit one more group...a walk-in office, in the hope of obtaining a blood test to see how my hemoglobin is doing.

I feel very good.  No intestinal problem.  No sinus problem.  Two 16 - 18 walks produced NO stress or strain...and today, took three (3)...yes three walks.  This afternoon for nearly 5 hours walking Bellingham city center, a few glimpses of which follow.



I saw this lady and her 1-year old yesterday.  Today, they both strolled only 10 feet from me as they crossed busy Mt. Baker Highway only one block from my apartment.




At 7:00 am, it was in the mid 30s f.  Returned home after 1 hour as I was under-dressed for the cold windy morning.  At 9:30 am, tried it again...and once again returned to my apartment after 1.5 hours.




Many Bellingham homes display beautiful floral displays...sign of pride...and much loving work.  Said it before...Bellingham has not a single neighborhood of what one would call unkempt...a pleasant city to walk...a city with numerous trails leading to and from every corner.



Interstate 5 (I-5) looking South to the distant Chuckanut Ridge Hills.



Please say HELLO to CHARLIE.  Charlie and his partner, SAM own the "Running and Walking" business KLICKS, from whom I have purchased a total of four pair of BROOKS "Addiction Walkers", my preferred walking shoe...fits and feels like bedroom slippers walking mountains, plains, or deserts.  Today, I purchased my 4th pair, which I will carry back to Roanoke next week (explanation later !).




Bellingham has a magnificent theatre program, produced in the above Mount Baker Theatre.



Bellingham Towers, the tallest building in town.  A rather good restaurant sits atop this "sky scraper", affording great views of the surrounding mountains and San Juan Islands.


Sidewalk Cafes adorn a number of Bellingham streets.




Wide avenues lead from city center to the waterfront...being newly developed after Georgia Pacific abandoned their large waterside paper plant a few years back, deeding the entire property to the City and Port of Bellingham.  The new waterfront is slowly taking shape...but not without plenty of headaches from the beating of heads between the City and Port...not exactly acting as a team.




Whatcom County Museum...and 100 + years ago, Bellingham City Hall.



Adjacent to the City of Bellingham, sits the community of the LUMMI INDIANS.  The above mural graphically traces local Indian life before the coming of the Europeans some 250 years ago.



From under a city street flows and falls Whatcom Creek...which flows out of Lake Whatcom  some 4 miles to the East.

Salmon once climbed the above falls, making their way to Lake Whatcom.  Today, a rather modern fish hatchery lies below the waterfall, which raise and release thousands of fingerling.  When the salmon return, public fishing is permitted in the pool below the falls / rearing ponds, creating a popular attraction to try your luck or just sit and watch while enjoying a picnic lunch.



From above the Fish Hatchery, LUMMI ISLAND, the first of the 172 San Juan Islands lies 7 miles from Bellingham Marina. 

In my sailing yacht(s), I could reach Lummi Island in 45 minutes while under sail.



Please say HELLO to PAUL.



It's OK to say HELLO again.

At first glance, Paul looked a bit out of place, sitting on a concrete bench.  Such an interesting fellow, I could not help but strike up a conversation.

Seems Paul is homeless...but homeless of a VERY different breed.  Instead of asking handouts, Paul has dedicated himself to traveling America...all of America...spending much time in Alaska.  In fact, Paul is waiting for the Friday morning sailing of the Alaska Ferry on which he has "walk on" passage to Alaska where he will spend yet another Summer as he has done so many times in the past.  One-way passage cost is $326.00.  Return flight can be found around $200.00.

Paul and I chatted for nearly one hour...looks, in Paul's case are VERY deceiving.  Paul has sparked an idea in my brain...how easy for me to enjoy the cruise to Alaska, where SAM & ME could range far and wide next Summer (May - September), blogging all the way. 



The distant hills cradle Western Washington University in the valley between crests.  This view is along the waterfront...downtown Bellingham on the left and Bellingham Bay to the right...the San Juan Islands beyond the Bay.



Bellingham Middle School.  This building was totally gutted by a massive fire.  The brick walls, however, withstood the disaster, around which the school has been completely rebuilt...better than before.




Bellingham is speckled with parks large and small.  This tiny park announces arrival in the "Lettered Streets" neighborhood. 

A sole woman is responsible for creation, development and care for this park...much to the apparent (so says she) consternation of the NEW Park Department Superintendent...an import from Alaska.



A small but immaculate home in Belligham.



Click click...there are people in that crooky tree.



Another rather modest...but attractive home meticulously manicured and presented to enhance the neighborhood.



Washington State Flower:  RHODODENDRON.

This plant grows wild in profusion...as well as being carefully tended in many Bellingham home gardens.

* * * * * * * * * *

Seeing as no one seems to be ready to allow me to re-enter Bellingham's medical environ...and seeing as I feel truly back under control...I will give it one more week.  If I continue to improve, I plan to fly back to Roanoke, Virginia; fetch SAM from Chuck and Donna; and head into the West Virginia Mountains.

I am so angry at the "system", I am challenged to give them my tush...and take on the waiting mountains...SAM and all !

Yes, Karen...I am a bit impetuous....


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