Saturday, March 26, 2011

Arriving at Body Boat Blade International

Seattle's Pike Street Market.
We had only 24 hours in Seattle -- just long enough to visit Snapdragon and Werner and wander around a bit in the historic Pike Place Market. On Thursday afternoon, Shawna Franklin and Leon Somme of Body Boat Blade picked us up in their canoe-topped car and we drove to Anacortes  to catch the ferry to Orcas Island, where they and their business are based.

Orcas Island is the largest of the San Juan Islands, located in northwest Washington state just east of Vancouver Island, Canada. Nearly 58 square miles with a year-round population of about 5000 people, Orcas is a quaint and quiet place where you can paddle in a full range of coastal conditions. It's home to Moran State Park, with its mountain lakes, hiking trails and observation tower atop Mount Constitution. And it's home to Body Boat Blade International, where we had come to work on a project with Shawna and Leon.

Body Boat Blade International galactic headquarters.
The small shop is well-stocked with high quality boats, paddles and gear.
Shawna at the helm.
 Shawna and Leon have carved out an unconventional life here. By day, they offer a full range of instruction at all skill levels. But when they're away from the shop and off the water, they live almost off the grid. They put us up in the apartment above the barn, where they lived while building their current house. The barn is filled with boats, not animals. After blowing out the candles, we fell asleep to the sound of wind blowing through the trees.

Our temporary home, lit by candles inside and the rising moon outside.

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