We awoke to clouds and light rain. It had rained on and off all night. I wanted the rain overnight so that all the salt spray we had accumulated on the exterior of Arctic Star would be washed away.
However, our plan was to Kayak around the islands, so rain was not welcomed once daylight arrived. Not to be deterred, we suited up in our foul weather gear and launched the Kayaks. It was low tide, the time we think ideal to explore in Kayaks as so much is revealed by the receding waters. As we paddled around, we found clams, orange sea stars (star fish to those who have not yet been told they are not fish), crabs and a variety of little bits of life that cling to the rocks.
Karen kayaking in the rain
Shortly thereafter, we were surrounded by seal heads just visible above the water. They kept their distance at about 100 yards, but they shadowed us as we continued our travels past their temporary home.
All in all, we explored for about an hour and a half before the rain and cold drove us back to the warmth of our boat. Once aboard, we stowed the Kayaks and dinghy and retreated inside for a warming shower and lunch.
Our next stop was Jennis Bay. This marina is only a couple of years old. It was built by Tom and Allyson Allo. Allyson had spent many summers here as a child when her Dad was a logger in the area. It seems she gathered up Tom and their two children and, as she tells it, kidnapped them to this magical place. When they arrived it was a bit of a disaster. But they persevered and rebuilt and added to what they found. Now they and visiting boaters enjoy a beautiful bay with spectacular views and peaceful waters.
Their son, Orion, aged 10 and daughter, Charlie Marie, 8 are a delight. They are ever full of energy and eager to share their world with guests.
The Marina is famous for Gumbo Night on Tuesday. Although we arrived on Tuesday, this late in the season with only one boat on dock, Gumbo Night was not in the cards. However, we were in for an even better and more special treat. It was Orion’s 10th birthday, and we were invited to help celebrate.
Crabs were cooked, prawns were boiled, and Orion sautéed the shrimp using his secret recipe while Tom made spinach artichoke dip. Karen and I brought wine and tried to help as best we could.
We all toast Orion on his 10th birthday
Allyson leads the way
Bravo, the pirate dog, also launched into the water (against his master’s wishes and commands) and proceeded to swim in trail. Bravo lost his eye to a wolf attack earlier this summer and now sports a permanent wink.
It suits his personality, which is loving and warm. Bravo’s sidekick is Kitty, the cat. Kitty is a fearless all black male, who just wants to be loved. Of course, Karen was most accommodating to his affections.
While Kitty stayed behind, we proceeded to a small island (Huckleberry Island) in the bay where Orion and Charlie disembarked to pick berries. Soon the power swimmer Bravo joined them onshore. The adults, in a brief moment of “adult time, continued on to explore the abandoned barge that lay just beneath the surface of the back bay. Allyson even found and retrieved an old kite of Orion’s that had broken its tether and was thought lost forever.
Called back to the island of abandoned children by cries of who knows what is wrong, we retrieved the kids and Bravo, now content to sit with Mom in the Kayak.
It was a perfect “Kayak”, no wind, glassy seas and a sun low in the sky.
Upon our return, all turned their attention to more food.
The requested birthday dessert was homemade blueberry and huckleberry pie, made with fresh picked huckleberries from nearby Huckleberry Island. See, I can use "huckleberry" three times in the same sentence.
Charlie makes us smile
We followed the sweets with a few party games before the yawns won the night and we all bid adieu for a good nights’ sleep.