Category Archives: Woodland

Planters’ Days Woodland, WA 6/2013

Fun for all once the rides have been set up!

Fun for all once the rides have been set up!

Worker setting up ride for Planters' Days

Worker setting up ride for Planters’ Days

Window on Woodland
Planters’ Days 2013
by Pat Nelson
Woodland will burst with excitement when it kicks off its 91st Planters’ Days celebration June 13. The carnival on Horseshoe Lake opens Thursday, June 13 at 3P.M., and soon after, kids with chalk in hand will decorate downtown sidewalks while they wait for the beginning of the 5P.M.children’s parade. Many years ago, I proudly marched in the parade alongside my grandchildren Max and Chelsea. Max, in a green-feathered bird suit, pulled his little sister through town in a wagon. Now, they are both teenagers, and more interested in the 10P.M. fireworks that shoot high in the sky and reflect beautifully off Horseshoe Lake.
Most who look forward to Planters’ Days weekend each year have probably forgotten . . . or never knew . . . the meaning of the celebration. Over 90 years ago, Woodland’s farmers worried about their crops every year because of the threat of flooding from the nearby Lewis and Columbia rivers. Once dikes were constructed, the farmers and the community celebrated, and 91 years later, the party continues.
This year Planters’ Days will host a new carnival, Davis Amusement Cascadia, with some different rides and an advance-sale wristband that will be available for purchase at Woodland’s Burgerville. The wristband, on sale for $23 prior to the beginning of Planters’ Days, appears to be a better value than wristbands in previous years because it will be good for a full day, both daytime and evening hours.
For me, watching the carnival set up can be as thrilling as riding the rides. One year, I took photos of a carnival worker as he assembled a large circular ride. Watching him climb the high structure to complete the assembly took my breath away.
Back in the 1930’s, the fire department started serving food on Planters’ Days weekend. Now, with the generous support of Walt’s Meats supplying the beef and Burgerville supplying the buns, the fire department continues the tradition by serving barbecued-beef sandwiches on the Saturday of Planters’ Days weekend. Long lines will stretch through Horseshoe Lake Park Saturday, June 15 as people await the annual treat.
On March 1, 2013, Woodland’s firefighters joined with Clark County Fire and Rescue, and this year Captain Mike Jackson is happy to say about the Firefighters’ Barbecue, “there will be a few more hands to make it happen.” According to Jackson, the firemen start getting ready for the event months in advance by gathering firewood. On Thursday of Planters’ Days weekend, they will get the pit ready, with the help of the Public Works department. Early Friday morning, they will start the fire that will cook the beef to perfection. By the time Saturday’s parade draws to a close, there will already be a long line in Horseshoe Lake Park at the Firefighters’ Barbecue. I admitted to Captain Jackson that one year when I saw flames shooting above the roofline of Horseshoe Lake’s outdoor kitchen, I called the fire department . . . and learned that it was their fire I had called to report!
The Saturday parade starts at 11A.M. but I always try to get there early to set out some chairs and to enjoy the excitement of the little kids waiting to see the horses, fire trucks and clowns. If you don’t take in the breakfast buffet at the Moose Lodge or the pancake breakfast at the VFW hall, there’s still plenty to eat along the parade route, from Woodland’s local family-owned restaurants to fundraiser stands offering baked potatoes, kielbasa and corn on the cob to many weekend-market food stands and, of course, the carnival food wagons.
With activities in downtown Woodland and on Horseshoe Lake all day Saturday, there’s no reason to head home after the parade. The hard decision will be deciding which events to see: the antique farm equipment display, the weekend market, the carnival, the firemen’s barbecue, the military vehicle show, the frog jump, the penny scramble, the firemen’s muster, the bed races, the RC boat show, the duck-boat rides, or the cruise-in. If it’s a hot day, you’ll find me playing in the lake, where I’ll have a good view of the carnival and many of the activities.
June 16, Father’s Day, is sure to be lots of fun, starting with a breakfast buffet at the Moose Lodge or a biscuits and gravy breakfast at the VFW Hall, the 4×4 Show and Shine, and a car show featuring hundreds of shiny classic cars lining downtown streets, plus a talent show.
Planters’ Days weekend has helped my family create memories for the past 15 years. Take in the events and let Planters’ Days weekend create memories for your family!
Copyright 2013 Pat Nelson. Reprinted with permission: The Valley Bugler, Longview, WA and Pat Nelson, Woodland, WA

Sidebar:
What: Planters’ Days Weekend Celebration
When: Thursday – Sunday June 13– 16
Where: Horseshoe Lake Park and Davidson Street, Downtown Woodland
Event Schedule: http://www.plantersdays.com/forms/2013_planters_days_schedule.pdf

Bio:Pat Nelson, writer and editor, is co-creator of three humorous and sometimes edgy anthologies: Not Your Mother’s Books: On Parenting (publication date September 10, 2013), On Grandparenting and On Working for a Living (both still accepting stories at http://www.PublishingSyndicate.com). Nelson blogs at http://www.storystorm.me and her stories appear at http://www.LewisRiver.com.

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Filed under Burgerville, carnival, celebrations, children, Family Memories, firefighters, firefighters BBQ, fireworks, grandchildren, kids, parade, Planters' Days, s, Valley Bugler, Walt', Woodland, www.publishingsyndicate.com

Costumes and treats make lasting Halloween memories

ally-will-save-the-day-071ally-will-save-the-day-07by Pat Nelson

 Every fall when leaves turn orange and pumpkins decorate yards, a think of Halloweens past. When I was a child, my mother usually created a costume for me from discarded clothing, scraps of material, face paint, and imagination.

My best friend Marilyn and I liked to dress in the same theme. One year, she dressed as George Washington and I dressed as Martha. In those days, it was still safe to trick-or-treat from house to house, whether or not we knew the homeowners. Some residents handed out gooey popcorn balls or homemade chocolate chip cookies. If they gave us apples, we didn’t have to check for sharp objects.

As soon as it was dusk, we would start ringing doorbells. Some boys, intent on collecting as much candy as possible, would race from door to door with pillowcases, trick-or-treating from before dusk until past the bewitching hour of 9:00. Marilyn and I trick-or-treated until about 7:00, when we went to a party at our school.

When my children were young, they begged to go to a haunted house. I gave in one year and promised them a trip to the Haunted Mansion in Longview. My daughter was sick a few days before the event, and she was so looking forward to going that when her fever subsided, I gave in. Part way through, she became so frightened that the ghosts and goblins had to let her out the side exit, and her fever returned.

Both of my kids enjoyed entering pumpkin-decorating contests, and both usually won prizes. One year at school, my daughter entered a particularly charming pumpkin. A medium-sized pumpkin, the head, perched on a plump pumpkin body. Whimsical gourds became eyes, nose, mouth, ears, arms and legs. Alas, her pumpkin was disqualified because it was decorated, not carved. However, a carved watermelon took the prize. For her, it was a lesson in “life’s not fair.”

Each Halloween, I think of Maggie McQuarrie, a 70-something Woodland Library supporter who passed away a few years ago. The tiny woman loved to dress up in costume, and one year borrowed a green, feather-decorated sweatshirt from my grandson, along with a bird headdress, just to surprise her “morning coffee” friends at McDonalds. On Halloween, she dressed up and knocked on our door. We felt kind of sorry for the kid who had to go out trick-or-treating alone until we caught the scent of her cigarettes and heard her raspy voice say, “Trick-or-Treat.”

From the time my grandchildren were small, they dressed up and joined 1000 other costumed kids in marching past the businesses on Woodland’s Goerig Street and Davidson Avenue, down one side and back the other, stopping at each business to trick-or-treat. Woodland continues this tradition each year, blocking streets to provide safety. Many businesses that would like to participate, but that are not located in the designated trick-or-treat area, set up booths along the route in the Grange Hall at 404 Davidson Avenue.

Area kids will form their own Halloween memories this October 31 when they trick-or-treat downtown Woodland between 3:00 and 5:00 P.M.

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Filed under celebrations, Halloween, Holidays, WA, Woodland, Woodland Community Library

Antique Fire apparatus displayed at Horseshoe Lake

Father and son inspect 1899 American steam fire engine

Father and son inspect 1899 American steam fire engine

By Pat Nelson
October 3, 2008
Reprinted with permission, The Daily News, Longview, WA

 

Visitors to Horseshoe Lake Park saw red recently when the Pacific Northwest Chapter of SPAAMFAA (Society for the Preservation and Appreciation of Antique Motor Fire Apparatus in America) held its first annual “end of summer muster” in September.

Ralph Decker of Tacoma, secretary-treasurer of SPAAMFAA’s Northwest Chapter, admired Woodland Fire Department’s 1928 Pirsh fire engine.

“Pirsh went out of business, but they built great apparatus,” he said. “It’s a shame they couldn’t’ compete anymore.” The Pirsh was Woodland’s first actual fire engine, after using a converted Model T. Woodland also displayed a more modern rig, its 2006 American LaFrance pumper.

Two of Doug Blackburn’s and Cathie Bigelow’s rigs drew a lot of attention. One was an 1855 Button hand pumper pulled to fires and pumped by man power.

“OK,” shouted Blackburn, who lives near LaCenter, “we need some firemen over here.” Five firemen lined up on each side of the pumper. “One hand up and one down, like this,” said Blackburn, as he demonstrated the proper grip on the long pumping arms. First the pumping arm on one side, and then the other, was pulled down by the firemen, over and over.

“Everybody got your pace?” yelled Blackburn.

“One-two, one-two” shouted Bigelow, SPAAMFAA’s Northwest Chapter president.

“Now pick it up,” Blackburn directed. “When you guys tire out, let me know.”

When the pumper was in use, lines of firemen waited to pick up the slack as those manning the pump tired, he explained.

 “Those guys were short and tough,” he said. “This one was before the horse-drawn rigs. It had to be pulled to the fire.”

Since there wasn’t a nearby horse trough to pump from for the Woodland event, water was pumped from a portable Fold-A-Tank pond. As a yellow fire hose filled with water, a bell rang, lights swayed and water spewed into the air.

Kids attending the event sported Junior Fire Marshall badges. James Summers, 4 ½, inspected an 1899 American steam fire engine with his dad, Woodland fireman Bill Summers.

The star of the show was another of Blackburn’s rigs, an 1899 American designed to be horse draw.  Originally built for San Francisco, it was later owned by 20th Century Fox and was in the films “Old Chicago” and “Hello Dolly.” It received a new boiler in 2000 from Everett Engineering, and is inspected yearly.

Before Blackburn demonstrated the steam-powered pumper, someone shouted, “Wet down the area. We’ll need a wet down around the steam pumper.”

Excelsior and kerosene-soaked kindling were often used to start a fire in the boiler, Blackburn explained.  A pile of wood sat behind the engine and Blackburn’s assistant started the fire with newspaper and kindling.

Soon, light grey smoke and soot chased observers from their vantage points.

“Get ready for it to blow,” shouted a little curly-haired boy. Bigelow rang the bell. Blackburn told the onlookers the pumper would have to get up to temperature, but not too fast. He entertained onlookers with stories while they waited.

People often think of these pumpers as spouting black smoke, he said.

 “That is because cities were too cheap to buy anthracite coal, so they burned hard rubber from tires,” he explained.

 “Ramp it up,” Blackburn hollered around noon after checking the gauges. Steam burst from the top of the engine and seeped out at ground level. Eventually, the equipment did its job, pumping a strong stream of water from the hose.

Many buildings burned to the ground because it took so long to heat the steam engine.

Blackburn, who worked for Fire District 6 in Hazel Dell for over 20 years, started out with a collection of helmets that grew and grew. He enjoys using his collection to show the way firefighting used to be.

Sidebar:

For more information, visit http://www.pnwspaamfaa.com/

Visit http://www.fentonfire.com/ if shopping for an antique fire truck.

To learn more about SPAAMFAA, visit www.spaamfaa.org.

 

 

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Filed under antique fire truck, Horseshoe Lake, The Daily News, Woodland

Volunteers have something to give. Students thrive with extra help.

By Pat Nelson
For The Daily News, Longview, WA, reprinted with permission 2008

 

A thin girl with straight brown hair and dull brown eyes sat down beside me in a classroom twenty-some years ago, put her head on her desk on her folded arms, and shut her eyes. I was there as a volunteer, helping elementary students to improve their reading skills. This little girl’s eyes weren’t dull every day, but she often arrived at school sleepy, and sometimes she hadn’t eaten breakfast. On those days, she started school with two strikes against her.

Another child I worked with was alert and attentive, but lagged behind some of the other students in his reading skills, which undermined his confidence. He needed a little extra attention.

Every elementary classroom has students like these who can benefit from one-on-one help. Teachers can’t always provide individual help, so they must count on volunteers.

I’ve volunteered in my granddaughter’s classroom for the past two years. She attends  a small country school, with only 18 students in her class. Because I’m a writer, I chose to help with writing. This September, I will start my third year with the same group of kids. When I first decided to volunteer, I cleared it with the teacher and then filled out a form at the school office to have my background checked.

Two years ago, as I sat at a low table in a little chair, students brought their folders to me one by one. I checked to see that they had completed their homework, and helped them if they had not. I listened to them read, and worked with those who needed extra help. Because I worked with the same students each week, I came to understand their individual learning styles or difficulties, and as time went on, I became better at directing my help towards the students who needed it the most.

Other times, the teacher allowed me to present a writing lesson. One day, the students all sat on a carpet in front of me, cross-legged, as I talked to them about what goes into making a book. I had written a book many years earlier, so I showed them the manuscript, the editor’s copy, the page proofs, the galley proofs, the cover design, and the finished product. I explained to them that each of the books in their classroom had gone through the same stages. They were especially interested in learning that even authors make mistakes, and enjoyed seeing the red proofreading marks on the edited manuscript.

Parents, grandparents, and other interested adults can help students boost their skills, interests, and confidence by volunteering in a classroom on a regular basis. It doesn’t have to take long. Last year, I helped with writing just thirty minutes a week. The children knew me and I knew the class routine, so I slipped into the classroom quietly just before the writing segment, and observed to see who needed help or a little extra encouragement.  As students got to know me, they started voluntarily coming to me for help, and they were proud to demonstrate their accomplishments. They liked showing me that they had hung my newspaper columns in their classroom, and they talked to me about my articles.

Last year, I presented an exercise on observation. I brought a basket full of items from home, and each child drew one item and filled out a description of the item based on using their senses. Those descriptive words then became part of a short story.

Students from the classroom  won first, second, and honorable mention in a county-wide writing contest, and I was excited to celebrate their achievements with them.

If you would like to share your own time, skills, and experience with a classroom at an area school, plan to sign up soon. Woodland’s school offices open August 18, and other school offices are about to open as well. By calling now, you can get the background check started, and you and the teacher can discuss your schedule. You’ll be giving a lot more than time. You will be helping youngsters thrive. If you would like to make a difference, this is a great way to do it.

SIDEBAR

School Volunteers Checklist

1.       List your areas of interest and expertise.

2.       Note the days of the week and hours that you can be available on a regular basis.

3.       Contact a school of your choice to sign up as a volunteer.

4.       Arrive at class a few minutes early and enter the room quietly, disrupting the classroom as little as possible.

5.       Sign up again next year. You’re always needed.

 

 

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Filed under elementary students, grandchildren, school volunteer, The Daily News, Woodland, writing, writing contest, writing lesson, writing mentor, young adult writing

Woodlanders among 430 riding to cure MS

by Pat Nelson

Reprinted with permission, The Daily News, Longview, WA August 1, 2008

Photo courtesy of Bill Dunlap
Pictured, left to right: Bill Dunlap, Bob Nelson, Claudia Yoder, Jeremy Wenzel, Scott Price, and Kristy Fitzjarrald-Deuchars

 

Woodlanders Bill and Barbara Dunlap and my husband Bob Nelson, along with Vancouver resident Claudia Yoder, manager of Big Deals in Woodland, were among 430 bike riders raising funds to fight multiple sclerosis July 19 and 20 in Sweet Home, Oregon.

Epic Imaging, the largest outpatient imaging facility in the Portland metro area, was lead sponsor for Bike MS 2008: Covering Bridges. Rides included a 10-mile family ride, or choices of 59, 76- or 100-mile rides on Saturday and 55 or 19 miles on Sunday.

Last February, when the days were dreary and Bob’s exercise had dwindled to changing the channel on the TV, Bill Dunlap called and asked if he would like to be a member of Epic’s team in a bike ride to be held in July. The idea of some fresh air and exercise sounded good to Bob, who had participated in a Livestrong ride in 2007. He recruited Yoder, who had previously participated in a Livestrong ride and Cycle Oregon.

The three started training in Woodland, and occasionally in Vancouver, while their other teammates trained in Oregon. Throughout his training, Bob kept changing bike seats, hoping to find one that felt as good as the couch he had left. In the end none could provide that same comfort, and he went back to the one he started with.

Early in their training, the Dunlaps reserved some of the few available motel rooms for the team. There was also camping at the high school, with showers and rest rooms available for use. Event wristbands got riders in to breakfast on Saturday and Sunday, dinner on Saturday, and a barbecue on Sunday.

The four team members arrived at Sweet Home on Friday, July 18, and met up with the rest of their teammates.  Bill had decided to ride 76 miles. My husband and Claudia Yoder chose the 59-mile ride. For Bob, that was about fifteen miles more than his longest ride in training. Barbara Dunlap chose the 10-mile family ride, but exceeded her own expectations and rode 20 miles.

Bob had worried about the weather, hoping the day wouldn’t be too hot. He was happy to start the ride on a comfortable, overcast morning. The ride started at Sankey Park near the historic Weddle Covered Bridge, and other covered bridges along the route provided pleasant scenery and relaxing rest stops. He was surprised by Sweet Home’s rolling, and sometimes steep, hills, which started appearing early in the ride.

Six and a half hours and one flat tire later, his legs spent but his spirits soaring, Bob completed the ride and gathered with his teammates. The original bike seat must have been a good choice, because he said his bottom didn’t feel too bad after riding sixty miles. Some of his teammates couldn’t say the same. I convinced him that he should take precautionary measures so that he could sit on the bike seat again the next day, so he treated each of his teammates to a bag of frozen peas to sit on to ease the pain.

The next morning, he chose the 19-mile ride, and ended the weekend proud to have been part of Epic Imaging’s journey to help defeat MS.

 

Visit Pat Nelson’s website at http://www.storystorm.wordpress.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Bike MS 2008:Covering Bridges, bike ride, Cycle Oregon, Epic Imaging, Livestrong, MS, multiple sclerosis, Sweet Home OR, The Daily News, Woodland

Friendship that lasts the test of time

By Pat Nelson for The Daily News, July 11, 2008

Reprinted with permission

 

Best friends come and go, so a friendship that has lasted more than 50 years is something to brag about. My longtime friend, Marilyn Herold of Longview and I celebrated her birthday and our friendship recently with lunch at Woodland’s Lewis River Golf Course.

Whenever we get together, we reminisce about our childhood days. I moved into her neighborhood in Longview when I was nearly nine, the summer before fourth grade. I was shy, and even though I wanted to meet the tall, pretty girl on the other side of my backyard fence, I was afraid.

One day when Marilyn was playing outside, my mother walked me to the fence. I hung my head as we approached, and mom urged me on and then introduced me to Marilyn. Marilyn was 10, one grade ahead of me and as outgoing as I was shy. She invited me to play “store” with her. Mom helped me climb the picket fence, where empty soup and vegetable cans neatly lined a wooden shelf in Marilyn’s make-believe market. That’s the day we became best friends.

At lunch recently, with the beautiful Lewis River flowing by, we talked about the memories that our friendship is made of. We were always looking for a way to make money. We sold lemonade and comic books from a small table in Marilyn’s yard.

Couponing was our favorite moneymaker. At that time, grocery stores would allow you to exchange cents-off  coupons for cash, whether or not you bought the product. We would look through the magazines in the grocery store until we found one that had coupons exceeding the cost of the magazine. One day, we found a 15-cent magazine with 35 cents worth of coupons. We bought the magazine, clipped the coupons, returned to the store and cashed them in. We bought another magazine with the proceeds, and repeated the process again and again.

At lunch, Marilyn asked, “Do you remember when we used to coax dogs with tags to follow us home so we could get a reward?”

I was shocked. I couldn’t imagine stooping so low just to make a few bucks.

“No,” I said, “I don’t remember ever doing anything like that!”

But, as the days went on, the memory returned. I remembered that the first dog really was lost. We called the owners. They were happy to get their dog back, so they gave us a few dollars. That gave us an idea, so we coaxed a couple of other dogs to follow us home Although we were thanked by their owners, there was no reward, so we gave up that venture.

Other times, we went through the neighborhood with a wagon and knocked on doors, asking if anyone had bottles they didn’t want. There was a deposit on soda and beer bottles, so we loaded our wagon with bottles and hauled them to the store to trade them for cash.

In the summer, our parents bought seeds for us and we grew vegetables. Then we sold the vegetables back to our parents. In the fall, we made Christmas cards. The longer we practiced our business ventures, the less shy I became.

Whenever one of us went outside, we called to the other, with a loud “Eee-Ah-Kee,” a call we had heard on the show “Lassie.” I was always disappointed if I hollered out the friendship call and there was no reply.

We talked on the telephone a lot, too. Marilyn and I thought we were the luckiest girls in the world because our families shared a party line. When she talked with friends on her phone, I was able to join in by picking up the phone at my house.

In the spring, we brought home free baby chicks from the feed store, even though my mother warned us not to. We raised rabbits in both back yards, and pollywogs in a jar on top of our oil stove. A washtub in my back yard held salamanders that Marilyn and I caught in the nearby slough. We often walked to the slough with a gallon jar to get the nasty green water that we knew our salamanders liked. We each had a dog, and we entered them in neighborhood dog shows, beaming with pride as they sat, rolled over, and barked on command.

We have so any great memories of our years together. Now, we both watch our grandchildren as they choose friends, and we hope they, too, can find life-long best friends.

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Filed under best friends, grandchildren, The Daily News, Woodland

Woodlanders at home on Kauai…house sitting

Scott and Nona Perry and Tasha

Scott and Nona Perry and Tasha

by Pat Nelson
for The Daily News, Longview, WA July 17, 2008
Reprinted with permission

Kauai, Hawaii — Home away from home. That’s what a house on the island of Kauai in Hawaii has occasionally been for a team of house sitters including three Woodland couples and families from Kelso, Castle Rock, Vancouver, Portland, St. Helens, and Deer Island.

House sitting duties for my husband, Bob and I, began in 2004, when my son and daughter-in-law, Steve and Laura Ellsworth asked us to go to Kauai with them. Laura called her friends on Kauai to inquire about a good place to stay. It turned out her friend would be “off island” the same time we planned to be there. To our good fortune, they offered us the use of their home.

The next year, that couple had friends who needed a house sitter for six weeks. The four of us were recommended. We couldn’t cover the entire six weeks, so another couple stayed part of the time, followed by Steve and Laura, and then Bob and I. We all loved having a home instead of a motel room to return to at the end of the day.

Our house sitting perks include a two-story home, a lap pool and use of a mini-van. Duties include caring for the house, the pool and grounds, and three pets. The dog, Tasha, is a Borzoi, or Russian wolfhound. She is black with white spots and tall and slender. Because she constantly sheds, all the floors upstairs and downstairs must be swept and mopped each day before it gets too hot. It didn’t take any of us long to fall in love with this gentle, sweet dog who remembers us from one visit to the next and welcomes us with a big smile when we arrive. The two cats enjoy being well-fed and well-loved.

Since our first visit, the owners added an aquarium and a fish bowl containing a beta. A goldfish is visiting until September while its owner is off island.

This month, I came to Kauai alone for some quiet writing time while my husband trains for a bike ride at home. I was met at the Lihue airport by Woodland residents Scott and Nona Perry, who were just finishing their house sitting duties. Before they headed home, we spent a day together snorkeling, eating Bubba burgers and shave ice, and sifting through sand at Anini Beach searching for tiny seashells.

When new house sitters arrive, they overlap with the current house sitters anywhere from a few hours to a few days for a good transition. Last year, the Perrys took over from Woodland residents Ted and Mary Ann St. Mars, who hope to return next year.

When the owners make plans to go off island, they e-mail me. I send notices to our house sitting team. Couples must act quickly. The spots are grabbed up within 12 to 24 hours. Everyone on the list has stayed at the house before and knows the routine. Each couple tries to leave the house and yard in better condition than when they arrived, which makes the owners happy when they return home after a six-week absence.

People often ask me how to land a house sitting job in Hawaii. Many island residents need to be off island for periods of time and might need house sitters to care for their pets or their yards. Lush island vegetation requires regular maintenance. The plants grow fast and constantly drop fronds, leaves, seeds and pods.

If you want to house sit in Hawaii and don’t mind the duties that go along with the job, visit one of the islands and ask everyone you meet.

One day, while house sitting on Kauai with friends Scot and Sue Lawrence of Portland, we decided to see how easy it would be to land other house-sitting jobs.

First, we asked our tour guide at the botanical gardens if she knew anyone who needed house sitters.

“I do,” she said. “I’m leaving next week and my regular house sitter has another job part of the time I’ll be gone.” We were already house sitting, so we couldn’t take the job.

Next, we asked at a restaurant.

“See that motel?” the waitress asked. “The owner goes to London, and she always needs a house sitter. Go ask her.”

We inquired twice and received two leads. We were told some people who live in Kauai year around, house sitting from one place to the next, never having their own place to live. If you’re footloose, fancy free and interested in house sitting, you might try renting a place on Kauai — or the island of your choice — and then ask around and line up jobs. Who knows. Within a year, you might be able to give up your apartment and just move from one lovely home to the next. But don’t accumulate too many possessions … keep life simple for those frequent moves.

Aloha.

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Filed under Anini Beach, Borzoi, Bubba Burgers, Hawaii, house sitting, Kauai, Lihue, off-island, Russian Wolfhound, The Daily News, Uncategorized, Woodland