We’re almost done up here in Washington. I can’t believe that it’s almost time to go home. This season sped by. Last year I got up here in the middle of May, only about a week earlier than this year. And the time passed slowly. It seemed that we were always doing fun stuff: going up to Soap Lake, either by land vehicle or helicopter; going tubing down the Methow River; watching the hydroplane races...and of course we hung around the bakery a lot, ate a lot of pizza and drank a lot of wine. (And I rode my motorcycle more last year.) This year we hardly did any of that. Where has the time gone? How does that happen?
This season not only started early, but we’ve flown a lot more this year too. In fact, I flew more just in July of this year than I did all of June, July and August of last year (which was admittedly dry). With the increased flying comes a lot of other tasks concerning the servicing and maintaining of the helicopters and equipment. So there’s been a lot more to do all around.
The contract for my ship was up as of yesterday (same as last year). The second ship will go to the end of the month, perhaps a bit longer. So I’ll stick around and fly with Taylor, the other pilot who is in his first season as a cherry-dryer…if we fly at all, that is. The forecast doesn’t call for much rain between now and the end of the month.
It’s been a very uneventful season, and we are thankful for that. We’ve had no major breakdowns or calamities. Knock on wood though!
I really like it up here. Last year I hung around way past the end of the season, well into the middle of September. This year there is no hurry to get home either, although I am looking forward to riding the motorcycle back. Yet at the same time I’m ambivalent. It’s going to be a hot ride, especially considering the southern route I’m taking home. The longer I stay, the cooler it’ll be. More and more, “September” seems like an attractive departure date.