Woke up all alone on day two of our trip to Ferndale.
And when I went looking for Josh Downs, I found him working in one of the Ivanhoe's common rooms. (He loves getting up at 4:00 or 5:0 a.m. to drink coffee, check the news, and get an early start on emails before heading off to work.)
I on the other hand, like starting work at around 6:00 a.m.
And by noon, my brain always needs a break, which means I take a bath, read a book, and catch a 15-minute power nap. (Josh swears I'm going to drown in the bathtub one day.)
Some people were offended by seeing my bare-face in the bathtub a few years, back (no, I'm not joking), which probably makes a photo with a bare-shoulder downright scandalous.
And by the time I got out, Josh was back from work and it was time for lunch.
But not before a quick pit-stop at the hat-shop to try to find the plain, blue, mesh baseball cap Josh bought (and lost) last time we were in Ferndale.
That's what Josh looks like when he cracks himself up.
And that's where we ate.
And then Josh went back to work, and I moved my own work out onto the deck of the Ivanhoe to get some sun (after stopping by Chocolate & Light per the recommendation of a student - thanks Lorie - to get some truffles.)
And when Josh got back from work again, we decided to go on a bike ride and I had the clever idea of taking turns wearing my camera strap backwards (so the camera was on Josh's back in these shots) with the Interval Timer taking pictures.
Most of the shots turned out like that though.
But there were a few that turned out pretty good.
And then Josh held a table for us while I got cleaned up and ready for dinner. (Every time we come to Ferndale, we plan the trip around Thursday Night Open Mic at the Ivanhoe, which is probably one of my favorite things I've ever written about on this blog.)
And then we sat there together, eating dinner (Chicken Polenta for Josh, and Grilled Shrimp and a Dinner Salad for me), drinking drinks (beer for Josh and Mango PassionFruit Martinis for me), talking, laughing, and listening to all the same people we've had the privilege of listening to over the last few years.
And I took a photo of the sign that has sat on this table for 16+ years now (the Brown-Bag-Snack-Table that used to read 'reserved', but now reads 'deserved') where Eleanor (Roosevelt) and her friends sit every Thursday night.
Unfortunately, Patti had a stroke, so she's not able to yodel at the Ivanhoe anymore. (Bill said he takes his guitar to her house and plays for her whenever he can.)
That fellow is just as spry and handsome as ever though. (I don't think we've ever figured out what his name is.)
I even got to spend some time learning more about Eleanor (Roosevelt) and her life. (I got to hear the story about how Eleanor's mom was a nurse and how she met Eleanor's dad at the hospital where she worked.)
I also got some time to talk to the owner of the Ivahoe (while waiting in line to use the restroom.)
We talked about how special this place is.
How beautiful the people are.
How sweet it is has been for her and her husband to grow to know and love the people who have sat in these same chairs for the last 18 years.
And how painful it has been knowing that some of them (facing serious illnesses or passing away) will never walk through the doors of the Ivanhoe again.
It's a sweet, painful, beautiful thing worth celebrating though.
These fleeting lives.
Turn this one on (loud) and soak it up for a few if you have time.