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Near La Conner WA. This street sign is the most-stolen sign in the state of Washington.
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The La Conner Quilt Musuem was having an open house . . . .
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Their main display was of quilted wearables, including this vest
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Up the hill in the Historical Museum, we found this add-on player piano gizmo.
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The Ice Cream Tower was quite popular, in spite of the $3.50 for a scoop price tag.
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We missed the ferry to Guemes Island by that much. We were going to cross over for lunch . . .
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Anacortes, on Fidalgo Island, was named for Anna Curtis, the wife of an early settler
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There are bunches of "murals" in Anacortes reproducing historical photos of the area.
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Most of the murals are sponsored by area businesses, who offer their walls
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Some buildings have several of these painted "mural" cutouts
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Our big international adventure began on the ferry docks in Anacortes
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2 1/2 hours later, we were in British Columbia Canada
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Our destination was Butchart Gardens near Victoria BC, on the site of a former limestone quarry
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There are about 50 acres of flowering plants.
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We took way too many pictures, of course. See the bee?
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They call this the "Snail Pond", for obvious reasons
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Even though it wasn't especially sunny, it was beautiful
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We don't know how many people it takes to maintain this place
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But they've obviously been very busy
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Everywhere you turn, more color
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Some places, the flowers cling to the limestone rocks, hiding its former quarry status
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All gardens must have ponds . . .
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People taking pictures of our reflections taking pictures of their reflections
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There are several fountains, including this one programmed with several patterns
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Lots of trees offers inviting nooks and peaceful views
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Trees and shrubs are obviously selected for their colors
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Being an old quarry, the gardens are on several levels
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This was Judy's favorite statue.
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Scrumptious, even with water spots
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They'll have a carousel sometime this year
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For now, it's a one-horse ride, a very popular posing spot
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We like totems. The eagle sits atop the beaver . . .
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Looks like new plantings - this, we think, is a nursery garden
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Lots of dahlias in many colors
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This one seemed to be lit from within
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In real life, this dahlia was an almost-impossibly-dark red
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Judy probably knows the names of most of these (they're all dahlias - Judy)
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To Al, they're all "flowers" . . .he's sure about only roses and chrysanthemums
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These are neither roses nor chrysanthemums
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Makes you want to flop down on the lawn and doze . . .
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A profusion of colors at every turn
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Blossoms of all sizes . . .
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Hydrangeas of all colors - and as color is a function of soil acidity, also amazing
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Sunflowers of a different shade . . .
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Bet they do a lot of weddings using those arches
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A most enjoyable place to stroll
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The combinations of plantings were wonderful
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We like bright colors
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Bet she's wondering if it's really a prince . . . .she is definitely a princess.
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Roses are always nice
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Some of the men liked the patterns on the lawn, "just like a ball field"
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Lots of garden paths we couldn't take
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Other than bees, we saw very few insects on the plants
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This huge bed of heliotrope smelled heavenly
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The old Butchart home now houses a restraurant and some offices
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It's called the Sturgeon Fountain, for obvious reasons.
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The Japanese Garden was quite peaceful
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Oriental trees have such interesting leaves
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The gardens have a neat private cove, offering boat tours of the garden perimeter, or you can park your yacht while visiting
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This astilbe patch was marvelous - Judy killed the only astilbe plant she ever owned!
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And there are many subtle features to catch your eye
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The Star Garden would look even better viewed from above
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Another shade of sunflower
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We could hear frogs, but didn't see them
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Neat passion flower bloom
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Oh yeah . . . always room for ice cream
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Great bi-colored canna
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It's kind of like walking through a rainbow
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Forget-me-nots and dusty miller make a striking contrast
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As we were leaving, some drama broke out - "The Princess and the Pea," with songs pilfered from various Broadway musicals
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Neat sculpture at the garden exit
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Before we could board the ferry back home, a bunch of cyclists had to get off
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The ferry passes much scenery on the way back to the US
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The San Juans have many unnamed islands
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This cargo ship attracted several camera-toting tourists
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A herd of grazing deer spotted on one of the islands we passed on our way back to Anacortes
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These car ferries are the most common transportation around the San Juan Islands - this one is leaving Friday Harbor
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Pulling into Friday Harbor on San Juan Island.
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The ferry dock isn't particularly attractive, but the town beyond is
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Sunset over the San Juan Islands
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In La Conner, on the walking tour of public sculptures - this one's "Rosary Bead"
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This one is called "All that and a Bag of Rocks"
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'Dirty Biter" remembers a waterfront dog reputed to nibble on your ankles unless you slipped him some food
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'Silent Words" - made of limestone and bronze (and Judy's favorite)
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Not officially on the sculpture tour, but fun anyway - these are all for sale
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In the narthex at Mount Vernon WA Presbyterian Church
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On Whidbey Island, the entrance to the Naval Air Station
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Tulips are very big around here, so a windmill is a must in Oak Harbor's waterfront park.
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The Deception Pass Bridge is one of Washington's most visited sites
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It's about 180 feet above the water.
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Currents beneath the bridge are very fast (9-10 knots), and change direction with the tides
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Early explorers thought the pass went only to a small bay; Capt Geo Vancouver named it "Deception" because it is an actual passage
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Finally, the Skagit Casino. We passed by it every time we left the RV park