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August 29, 2004

Whidbey Island

Day 9. In the morning we headed down to the seafront in Oak Harbor -
the biggest town by far on Whidbey Island and the home of a Naval

The highwater line is littered with the obligatory driftwood
which the kids and I had terrific fun clambering over. All along the
front is a wide path with many seats / windbreaks and barbequeing
areas with a park area between the sea and the town complete with
playgroubd for the kids and an outdoor pool fed by the sea at high
tide. After reaching the end of the path so that the boys could take
a close look at the jet fighter on display there, we looped back
accross the park to get back to the minivan.

In the park were many tents and a strange looking black wall in
front of some trees. As we appraoched we realised that this was an
exhibit and we eventually discovered that this was the
travelling 'Wall'. This is a memorial to all the American sevicemen
and women who gave their lives in the Vietnam war. The wall we were
seeing is apparently a replica of the real memorial which I believe
is in Washington DC. It is stunning in its simplicity and mightily
powerful to view. All along the wall are inscriptions of the year
and a list of all of the service men and women who died in that
year. The whole wall is dozens of yards long and there are so many
names on it that it really brings home the terrible price the people
of the USA paid in this conflict.

From Oak Harbor we drove down the island to Coupeville. What a gem,
its a picture postcard perfect seaside town with brightly painted
wooden buildings and elegant victorian mansions looking out across
the sheltered bay. We feasted on fine seafood and a couple of the
local 'buckets of ice' sitting outside in the blazing sun looking
over the edge of the deck to see thousands and thousands of starfish
in the shallow water below.

From Coupeville we headed west to the other side of the island
stopping off at a couple of places to watch the breakers crashing in
and to walk on the beach. Finally we got back to the motel, had a
splash in the pool to round off a delightful day.

Posted by Graham on August 29, 2004 02:04 PM
Category: 2004 the pacific north west
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