I had an interview in the Vancouver area towards the end of May and wasn’t going to go all that way for all work and no play, n
ot with one of my favourite destinations less than an hour away! A couple of posts ago, I wrote about the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival. In the past, I’ve enjoyed tulip-free places in the area and this trip confirmed that I love the Skagit Valley with or without tulips.
Everyone seems to be a gardener. Flowers are everywhere (roses and more roses at this time of year), and yards are neatly trimmed. As I was driving along Chuckanut Drive towards my favourite bakery in Bow (Farm to Market Bakery, I love their lime-soaked polenta cakes and posole), I noticed a farm house on the opposite side of the road with masses of roses leaning over a white picket fence. I had lunch at the bakery that day, strangely having the outdoor seating area all to myself at mid-day. I sat at a picnic table surrounded by a variety of flowers growing against a fence on two sides, and the more I looked around, the more I saw, including ripening strawberries and the biggest green-to-be-blueberries I’ve ever seen on a shrub. Between the flavours playing a symphony in my mouth, the just-right temperature, and the quiet garden setting, I was blissed right out!
I went for ‘photo strolls’ with my camera in Edison, a funky little town about two blocks square, and La Conner, a bigger and more touristy town but with tons of personality. I found more flowery fences, and marveled that in the cities I’ve lived in, fences are mostly built to keep the neighbours’ curious eyes out and the family children or pets in; Skagit gardeners seem to prefer to incorporate them into their natural art, using them as a substrate for beauty.