Sunday, January 28, 2007

One foggy morning...

...in Olympia, Washington.

This little port is the southernmost port of Puget Sound. Although it gets some commercial traffic it's normally a pretty quiet, uneventful berthing spot for pleasure crafts, live aboards and some fishing vessels.

Any commercial traffic that's going to use Olympia's port facilities has to pass by Everett, Seattle and Tacoma on the way. Once the skippers of those southbound vessels see what those port facilities have to offer and compare them to what Olympia has they normally opt to do business with the others in the future... unless, of course the cargo is truly "Olympia" bound.

Either way, I thought I'd take a little drive the other day just to slow things down a bit. I've had a heckuva lot on my mind and I just wanted to relax the brain.

I bumped around Swan Town, Priest Point Park and eventually dropped down to the West Bay Drive area.

One of my brother's, the next one up in age from me, used to work at a lumber mill along that road back in the 70's and early 80's. The mill has since burned, leaving nothing but a few pilings and a couple of dilapidated docks as a silent memorial to the once bustling business.

He pulled a lot of paychecks out of that place while it was up and running though... good, hard earned money. Blue collar greenbacks, for sure.

It was a bit of an odd, almost eerie feeling I had standing there looking at the pilings, docks and water where the mill used to be.

I remember I would drop by and visit him at night when he was on his break. We'd talk about the day, about getting a beer or two when he "got off" work... simple chat.

Empty headed, no clutter, unassuming...

...mindless.

Two brothers in their late teens, early twenties at the beginning of their adult lives...

willing to take on all challengers... fearless and anxious.

Afraid of no one, nothing... simply anxious to move forward.

Knowing that if all else fails we'll always be brothers, always be family. From the eldest to the youngest, me... always brothers, always family!

Shouldn't that be the family way?

Growing up together. Brothers, sisters, mother, father.

Each supporting the other... sharing, living, helping, protecting, providing... understanding?

We didn't have any "sisters" in our family... all boys, all brothers. Five of us altogether... and Mom and Dad.

We stood back to back on many an occasion and will do it again, I'm sure.

My eldest brother seemed to be that "protector". That person who was there to watch over me when I never knew it... never realized it... during those impressionable years. He never hesitated to intervene on my behalf... NEVER.

And now we have our "own" families, our "own" children, our "own" grandchildren yet, we're still bound by that familial bond. That brotherhood of sorts we've come to realize over the years as we "grew up".

That bond of bonds.

We know we have to fight our own personal battles, live our own lives... slay our own demons!

We realize life is truly like a "box of chocolates" yet, no matter what the odds, what the issues at hand, whatever the situation may be we know we're not alone... if we don't want to be. After all, isn't that what family should be all about?

And life moves on.

4 comments:

Cathy said...

That brought tears...lots of them.

My in-laws have a house on Puget Sound. My ex has 8 brothers. When we would go visit we would all gather at the house out at the bay. That second photo looks like the view from across the bay. Those were happy times.

Too bad happy memories can cause such pain.

Dennis said...

Dammit! I keep forgetting you have history up here!

I'm sorry Cathy!!!

That wasn't the intent... to make you cry. We've just had a pretty rugged time lately and I had a selfish moment and "snuck out"... I had to take a breather.

Besides, there ain't no cryin' in bloggin'!

Yah, RIGHT!

Again, I apologize if it made you sad. But then again, it made me sad too.

There's just so much going on and there's no end to it.

Dennis

Steve said...

Family should be like that Dennis... :)

I love the pictures!

Sometime...who knows when??? I will stop by, and see more of Olympia than just the highway!

Dennis said...

Hi Steve!!!

Yah, I apologize for us not being able to hook up but things were so darned busy when you were out here and we were gone most of the time anyways.

Either way, you bet! Give us a call when you're in this area and plan on having at least a meal with us. I think I gave you my cell phone number. If not I'll email it to you and will get you our home phone number as well.

Thanks for stopping by Steve. It's good to see you're back!