Posts Tagged ‘Kingston ferry’

Thursday, 21 June 2018

After watering the Shelburne Hotel garden, we began our trip. (We may be publishing twice a day until the whole trip story of many gardens is told; otherwise, this blog will end up a month behind real time.)

In South Bend, we had coffee and scones at Elixir Coffee, overlooking the Willapa River.

I like this rusty metal railing next to Elixir.

by Elixir entrance

Elixir inside and deck

the deck

Allan’s photo

Allan’s photo…the perfect motto for me.

From there, we (meaning Allan) drove to the Kingston Ferry.

in Montesano (about one fourth of the way there)

Even the traffic in Kingston had me seriously wanting to turn around and go home, never mind the loss of money for the event and hotel reservations.  However, we persevered.

my view of a passenger on the Kingston Ferry

Allan’s photo

I was glad that the drive from Edmonds, on the other side of the water, to the city of Bothell was only half an hour; we arrived at 8:15 PM on the longest day of the year.

The Hardy Plant Study Weekend would begin early the next morning.  Meanwhile, we checked into the

McMenamins Anderson School hotel,

a converted old junior high school with extensive landscaping.  As soon as we had parked, I felt that seeing the garden made the trip worthwhile. All McMenamins hotels and restaurants are known for their landscaping.  In 2014, we toured the gardens of their Kennedy School Hotel in Portland.

Riz Reyes is the Gardens Manager at the Anderson School, and before our trip was over, we would get to spend two and a half hours with him on a tour of the garden.  This evening, we simply walked around marveling and appreciating.

A drought tolerant garden by our far flung parking spot. The hotel is the tall red building in the distance; the closer building is one of the hotel restaurants.

loved the edging of old wine barrel hoops

thrilled to see Moon Carrot (Seseli gummiferum)

garden admirers (Allan’s photo)

Echinacea pallida in a meadow garden as one approached the hotel

the meadow garden

The check in office is to the far right, above, at the end of that covered walkway, but we did not realize that yet.  So we started walking along the sidewalk to the front entrance of the building.  I was carrying my pillow and one bag.

now walking along the front of the old junior high school

For those who don’t know, back when I was in school, junior high housed grades 7-9, ages about 12-14.

After entering the building and wandering a bit of the first floor, clutching my pillow in a elderly waifl-ike fashion, I asked a guest where to check in.  We then left the building and finally found the check in office and then, on our way to the room, appreciated the courtyard gardens.

Railings and arbours and sculptures by the same craftsman are to be seen at many McMenamins venues.

The metal worker’s name is Jeff Allen.

I had managed to book a basement room that could be entered, with no stairs, from a corner door, down a long exterior walkway and through a sort of work corridor for the restaurants and past stacks of wood for the courtyard outdoor fireplaces.  (I wish I had photographed the good looking stacks of firewood.)

looking back toward the check in office

It was 8:45 PM and I was grateful for the longest day.

I later learned this fragrant rose is ‘The Poet’s Wife’.

The basement hotel rooms look out at ground level.

Each room has a name, often named for a student, a teacher, or a Bothell citizen of note.  Ours was called The Willow People.  That could not have been more perfect.


willow and rushes painted on the bathroom wall

The history of the Willow People was in a frame on the wall both inside and outside of the room.

We did not have time over the weekend to read any of the books in the room.

Another book. My mother used to tell me I was a late bloomer.

The view out of our room window does show the beautifully stacked wood in the covered corridor.

from our window

We went back outside and walked through the gardens some more before having dinner.

We found the sloping kitchen garden which supplies some delicacies for the restaurants.

variegated horseradish

on our garden walk (Allan’s photo)

We found the building that has a big salt water swimming pool that is partly open to the sky.

the salt water pool (Allan’s photo)

I wanted to dine at the North Shore Lagoon tiki bar (its menu looked best, tropical in flair, of the three or four restaurants on the acreage).  A long flight of stairs daunted me and the elevator was too scary looking, like a giant shabby dumbwaiter.

We chose the ground level Tavern on the Square instead.

view from our table

another view from our table

We shared a delicious pizza.

the walk back to our room through the magical garden

garden by night (Allan’s photo)

Allan’s photo

hotel corridor (Allan’s photo)

The only flaw in the hotel’s many amenities is that the rooms do not have little refrigerators for leftovers (or any way to make a cup of tea), nor is there an ice machine.  I needed ice for my ice pack for chronic neuralgia, and after we went back to our room, Allan had to go begging at three different restaurants before someone had time to fill the ice bucket that was available in the room (with instructions to get ice from a restaurant…woe betide if they had all closed!)  The room was dark and quiet and, unusually for being away from home, I was asleep by midnight instead of the usual 2 AM and I slept the sound sleep of the exhausted.




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