And the road goes on forever...

Friday, September 11, 2009

A Bridge Away: Gig Harbor, WA

Within the past few years a new bridge was opened, and thus more lanes to better connect mainland Tacoma to the Key Peninsula a world away. The Key area is fast-growing it seems; whereas Tacoma teems with crowds, traffic and noise, Gig Harbor floats serenely just above sea level, boasting itself as the maritime city. The harbor dominates everything since the town is village-sized and we hit it on a spectacularly pretty day warmly glowing. Finally, I smell salt sea air again after so many months!

We’ve come to just generally check out the area; check the ambiance, check on rural property; check on the Gig Harbor RV Resort which is our first stop. We however, won’t fit, so we can cross that one off our list. We drive rural roads and narrow highways for hours looking at land parcels but find nothing that takes our eye. One nearly landlocked piece seems interesting from the roadside view we have of it—it sits far across a front field with no current access; five acres beckoning to be explored, but how? The easement sits behind the neighbor’s fenced yard and would require a ton of money to even get the grade and driveway put in to run such a distance. It too is crossed off the list as are all the others; every one of them has something wrong. We are discerning and picky buyers and on our budgeted amount, this area just isn’t it.

Famished, we head back to Gig Harbor to walk her streets, explore the docks and eat. Kelly’s Kitchen serves up breakfast and lunch in a nice atmosphere but fairly high prices. Oh yea, we’re back near the big city now! Down on the town dock we watch as boaters come and go with Marc even helping in a large 40 foot aft cabin Carver. We find out the guy lives aboard right there in Gig Harbor for a mere $300 month moorage and $36/electric (electric rates in the Puget Sound area are the lowest in the nation; Gig Harbor is 6/cents KWH.) So, as the probably $700,000 water-front condo dwellers with their $3000/mo mortgage and high HOA fees and taxes enjoy their water view, right outside their deck, the boat dweller experiences the water up close and personal at a mere fraction of the cost. It doesn’t seem like a bad way to live to us. Honey, do we have enough money for a boat like this?