Welcome friends...thanks for coming by. We're seeking beauty in all of creation... in our faith and our families; our art and our music; our crafts and kitchens, and even in our own backyard. We'll share a poem or a recipe, a picture or a memory; maybe a dream of how we wish our life could be. And though we acknowledge that the world can be harsh, we're keeping it pleasant in our little corner; endeavoring to keep the words from the Book of all Books: ...Whatsoever things are lovely; think on these things.

I so enjoy hearing from you...so leave me a comment; it'll make my day!

Photo: Bee and thistle: Taken high in the Cascade Mountains where there is a bee buzzing on every thistle. by Debora Rorvig

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Of Salty Dogs and Salmon Woman; and a Sacred Spot named Semiahmoo

We went to Semiahmoo today. (Pronounced Sem ee ah moo). I have been to Waikiki, Kailua Beach, Paradise Island, Shi-Shi Beach, Cannon Beach, Daytona Beach, and countless other beaches. For this Northwestern girl, Semiahmoo is the most wonderful beach in the world. It is my quiet place...a sacred spot in this sometimes not-so-sacred world. I almost hesitate to share it because it is 'my place.' It's a place of weathered wood and colored rock; of painted daisies in the summer; eagles perched on gnarly trees; of seals and seagulls who fly high above--dropping clamshells onto the beach below so as to break them open. It's where the Semiahmoo tribe lived happily in days gone by, fishing in the ocean and gathering mussels and clams from the bountiful beaches. It's where I go to think. To cry. To fly a kite then give it to a passing child. To read. To pray.

Today was Baron's first visit to the beach. It's important to me that he become a 'salty dog'. Because I am a salty girl; and he will no doubt spend many hours walking with us along some shoreline or another. Long before we actually reached the beach, he was excitedly sniffing the salt air from the car window. I was almost giddy for him to see this new place.

A first look

Taking it all in

He loves it! Yes, he will be a 'salty dog!'

A long time ago there was a fish cannery on this beach. It's now a county park.

This totem, carved by Morrie Alexander in 1962 tells the story of Raven and Salmon Woman.

"Once upon a time Raven became lost in a dense fog. Just as he thought he would never find his way out of the fog, a beautiful woman appeared beside him and offered to help. 'Give me your hat', she said. Raven handed her his spruce root hat. As she held it, the fog disappeared into it. Pleased with the woman, Raven took her home and married her. One day the woman ordered one of Raven's slaves, a grizzly bear, to go to the river and fill Raven's hat with water. When the slave returned with the water, a bright fish was swimming in the hat.The woman spoke to Raven, 'build a large smokehouse, wait for 4 days, then look for more fish.' Raven did as he was told and on the 4th day the waters were filled with them. 'These fish arecalled Salmon,' said the woman. 'They will bring you food and wealth.' 'I shall call you Salmon Woman and because you have brought me these fish,' said Raven. Raven worked hard. He caught,smoked, and sold his fish. Soon he became wealthy. As his wealth increased, he ignored Salmon Woman and forgot that he owed his good fortune to her. One day she ran away. As Raven went after her, she was caught in a wisp of fog that drifted over the water. She disappeared, never to return. Just then, the fish in the smokehouse came alive, swarmed down to the water and swam away, leaving Raven as poor as he had been before he met Salmon Woman. But Salmon had been created and ever since return each year as a source of food and wealth."

I took 'pictures of the pictures' hanging in the Inn at Semihamoo. (Yes there is a hotel here, if you are thinking you'd like to visit. ) Sorry for the reflections in the pics. That's me with my phone/camera. All of these pictures were actually taken on the beach at Semiahmoo. I'd like to imagine that the beautiful young girl is Salmon Woman. If I were an art thief I would not go to the Louvre or Smithsonian...no, I would slip into the Inn and wisk away the picture of the old woman on the beach, gathering mussels. I would take it home and place it somewhere that I could gaze upon it every morning before my day began. It gives me peace every time I stand before it. It is, in a word, Serene. And no, I will not steal it...except to take a poor photo of it for you to enjoy.

May you break every chain that holds you back...

...and may your heart soar high this week!



Linda O'Connell said...

What an awesome post! I yearn everyday for the beach. When life gets me down, I go ona virtual walk. Today I am grateful that I could visit your beach.

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Brenda @ It's A Beautiful Life said...

I loved meeting Baron... from the look on his delighted face, I agree, he's going to make a fine salty dog!

I envy (in the nicest way) your ability to be so near the ocean. I love the smells and sounds of the seashore, but alas I'm about a 1000 miles inland, so my walks on beaches are far between.

Maybe that's why I've enjoyed your posting today... I caught a glimpse of heaven from your part of the world.

Best to you... and to Baron!

chickory said...

delightful! You took me there. really like your salty dog taking it all in -but loved the raven tale the best...crow medicine is very powerful. I try and maintain a good relationship with my local crows.


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