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Crabbing, Tide Pools

August 16, 2009
Bandon - Crabbing 039

Yesterday she climbed the lighthouse in the distance

What a big, sunny, windy day!  We started off exploring the beach, and found some tiny tidepools, caught a hermit crab, watched the anenomes’ tentacles creep toward him as I lowered him back into the water.

Then an hour or two of laundry and groceries and Mazie Jane reading, and by then it was nearing high tide and time to get the rented crab pots into the water so we headed down to the dock, threw a fish skeleton in, and pulled up basket after basket of small and medium crabs, like a treasure hunt!   None of them measured big enough to keep, though, so we played with them (the kids got over their initial fear of the cold water spray and crabs to play with great curiosity) and let them all go.

A family in a boat, just coming in from fishing in the ocean, cruised up to us and asked, “Have you caught anything yet?” and threw four big fatty crabs into our bucket – “There you go.  Here’s dinner.”  They had just caught 60 keepers out deep!  That was all they had come in for – just to pick a family to give some crabs to – and they cruised back off into deeper water.  What a gift!  After many more heaves of our pots, we took our four lone fat crabs up to a little crab shack where they boiled them up for us, melted some butter, added a couple of bowls of clam chowder, and we sat down for a messy, messy feast.  The kids couldn’t have been happier than having a food they had to crack and pick at and pull and dip to eat.

Bandon - Crabbing 023While we were on the dock we saw a cormorant eat a fish, jellyfish swimming under the dock, a gull eat a little crab scurrying away from someone’s pot, and a slippery sea lion playing near the dock.  And at the crab shack later we met a sweet little Italian girl with the most beautiful voice, who taught Mazie Jane and Holt several words in Italian.   Ciao!

We also stopped at a little tapestry shop where the German owner had three beaded Nigerian juju statues, potent mojo for the juju shamans.  My arm actually buzzed up to the elbow after touching them.  They were fascinating, powerful and a little dark, and definitely should belong in a museum someday.  There was also an old Nigerian throne, beaded.

The kids are finding the wild inside them.  This morning they asked when we can camp in wilderness again, away from any people.  Maybe this is another way of asking when we can stop sleeping in parking lots, which they also asked recently!  Even in solitude, surrounded by creek or ocean or dunes, if we’re in a populated area it’s still basically a parking lot under our wheels.

Our two crab pots are down there now, and we’ll check them again in the morning.  Bandon is a sweet little town, sleepy and friendly.  I have experienced so many strangers striking up friendly, animated conversations here…  We’ll all sleep well again tonight.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. MomE permalink
    August 16, 2009 6:49 pm

    I was so excited last night when I opened your blog and found these lovely pictures and beautiful narrative. Judy was here for dinner and so enjoyed it. Cami, you are a great photographer. I so love the one of Mazie in her life vest with the gorgeous pink sunset behind her. It is definitely a keeper. So many of Mazie and Holt together and great family shots. What fun!

  2. Charlie permalink
    August 18, 2009 4:16 am

    ok, I have to guess that you are heading south on the coast so now that you have seen Bandon there is plenty of beautiful sites coming. Must see. Stop at Port Orford and look at battle rock. Nice beach. Gold Beach, drive up the north side of the Rogue river and come back on the south road. Stop at Agness and think about a side trip to Powers. If you get a chance hike up the Illinois river a couple miles. The prettiest river on the planet.
    At Pistol river you can jut inland to the old carpenterville road. Nice pull outs for camping on a high ridge. Sape Sebastion has a good assortment of lookouts beach and razor clams. Just south of pistol river on 101 is seal, sunset, beach, go a low tide if you can pull off the road. Look for indian shell mounds. Brookings then Harbor going south. Harbor has a little shack with the best clam chowder ever. Drive up the Winchuck for nice camping off road. Then south to the redwoods in california. Be sure to stop in Rock Creek state park! Enjoy.

    Love Charlie

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