June 21, 1992
The weather is very summerlike today, which really shouldn't be a surprise considering that yesterday was the summer solstice. It's 93° F, but the wind makes it quite comfortable.
I went down to Carkeek Park, and for the first time since I started going down there, I parked my truck and wandered around on foot. I went over the "skywalk" and down to the beach (if you can call it that, there is very little sand to speak of).
It was amazing.
I took pictures of the Olympic mountains, which were clear as day, and walked up to the low tide. My sneakers are soaked and smell strongly of sun-rotted seaweed. Every step I took, it felt as if the soft soles of my sneakers were destroying hundreds of species in a single step. The stones were thick with barnacles, and strips of the tiniest snails I've ever seen peeled back like loose threads on an improperly sewn hem.
There was a group of children, all around 5 or 6 years old, playing in a tidal pool at the mouth of the pipes which ran under the railroad tracks. After having wandered the beach, I went up onto the tracks and walked down to that tidal pool. As I tiptoed from tie to tie, I found a half flattened nickel in the rocks of the bed. It made me remember the happy frustration of having put a penny on the tracks behind Grandma's house and not finding it after the train ruthlessly knocked it away. I picked it up, and put it in my pocket.
"I found your nickel. Thanks," I said to the non-existent person who'd left it behind.
I reached the spot where the pipes ran beneath the tracks and took a picture of the children playing below from that perch. Not five seconds after I snapped the picture, a train rushed up behind me. I walked, half sliding, down the pathway to the tidal pool, reaching the bottom as the train raced by. It was long and loud, and the kids screeched with delight as they bounced on a makeshift, driftwood see-saw in the middle of the water.
I walked back up the skywalk and headed for my truck. It's quite an amazing park, in some spots quite like what I imagine a rainforest to be like. I left content and looking forward to the time I have visitors here to share this marvelous place.
* This photo is of me with Katie, my "Little Sister" on a cold day in Carkeek Park a couple years after I wrote this entry. Katie is now 22 years old.