South Beach

This poem “South Beach” was written back in 2010 and later published in my first poetry chapbook “Madrona Grove” in 2013. It is what some would call a “process poem” where the writer uses the art of poetry to process a real event in their life. Of all the poems in the book THIS is the number one poem that generates an email, phone call or a conversation to me from the reader. I’m glad this poem has touched so many. When I read it, even 11 years later, a part of me is back on that beach. I can still hear the waves, I remember the eagle. That was the year of “no more.”

Cattle Point Lighthouse, San Juan Island, Washington state. South Beach (upper left)
Photo credit: Please visit his website.

South Beach
by Shannon Laws

Often, we would walk South Beach together
That long large-pebbled beach
along the Salish Sea
on the island’s west side

Short, salt water waves
lap up against the shore there,
constant rhythm set by the wind,
like a slow rock tumbler
sifting for agates

Brown cliffs of San Juan
barely hold a road on top itself
Large crumbles of dirt clots
lay at its feet predicting its fate

Hard soles are needed to walk this beach
The stones just large enough to
aggravate the arches as you walk,
Hamstrings pull heavy with each step

Once in a while,
whenever it wants to,
a large eagle can be found
perched on beach wood

He owns that beach and all who pass
His royal brow gives no doubt

This is my favorite beach, you tell me, one foggy morning

We tried again to walk together
I walked ’til I reached the Eagle King,
you continued alone into the mist
Mystery always favored over familiar
I sit and watch you heavy step away

Alone you go into the fog
leaving me to sit with the eagle
You continue until a low cloud
consumes you from my sight

I imagine you reach the end
where the cliffs give way to the shore
and the landscape bends around
to the fields at Cattle point
I saw you in my mind
alone and happy with your thoughts
and the sea

I sit and watch,
You walk and ponder

A year later,
You sat and watched
as I walked off the island
You let me go that year
just like I let you
walk the beach

Visit my Amazon Author page to purchase or download the book today:

Introduction to Discovery

Here is a poem from my latest book, “You Love Me, You Love Me Not” available on Amazon and at Village Books in Bellingham, WA. The book is an audio book and has a chap book accompaniment. The poem may come across as obvious to some. However, the book and this poem are attempts to explore that level of comfort and communication between two people who can read each other with eyes closed.

Introduction to Discovery

You are a question that must be answered

He touched me
He touched me
The way
I wanted him to
The way
I wished he would
He read my mind
And he touched me

His fingers moved along the ridges
Of my galaxy in search of the ignition
old crate of dynamite
hidden in the shed
sweats with glycerin
delicate to movement
so my love is for you

drop that box! start a bang
kick start a star to life

use all fingers to read
me as a mystery novel
written in Braille
every bump, knob and dip
a conjunction closer to knowing
the riddle of Eve

Godzilla V Kong

I love movies. Since early childhood movies have been a major part of my life. As a latchkey kid, and especially in-between soccer and softball seasons, movies kept me company. I remember during my pre-teens spending Saturdays with back to back movie blocks on KSTW TV channel 11’s Tarzan movies on “Jungle Theater” for breakfast, Godzilla and the like on “Monster Theater” after lunch, old-corny Sci-fis and Westerns were on other channels as supplements. All the basic food groups.

So fast forward to 2021. While sleeping through most of Godzilla v Kong I asked myself “What the frick is happening to movies?” Special effects are amazing, yet storytelling is at its all time low in my opinion. Horrible. Truly horrible. Too many movies are given BIG budgets to produce BIG piles of doo-doo.

DISASTER PORN: The Collapse of Compassion

By 2007 watching the first Transformers movie, the whole CGI city being destroyed by large objects became exhausting to watch. It was the first noticeable moment of disaster movie burnout. A few times I found myself in the dark theater sleeping through the BIG finale battles of The Lord of the Rings, Avengers, heck even the mono/mono 20 minute fight scene at the end of Mission Impossible II was better than an Ambien! So, enormous aliens destroying a city full of perhaps 3.967 million, the population of Los Angeles, didn’t tickle my fancy anymore. (By the way, I had to look it up, since 1953 Los Angeles has been fake-destroyed in 33 movies, See “The Complete List of Los Angeles Destruction movies” link below.)

Transformers transform a city in Transformers: Dark of the Moon (2011)

When I see a whole high-rise fall on the screen, I think about the people that are in it. It hurts me. It hurts me to watch large creatures or armies destroy a city. I don’t believe as many buildings in real-London were destroyed during WWII as in the fictional “Battle of New York” –the major battle between the Avengers and Loki, along with his borrowed Chitauri army, in Manhattan, New York City. It is recorded that by the end of WWII, just under 30,000 Londoners had been killed by the bombing, and over 50,000 seriously injured, tens of thousands of buildings were destroyed, and hundreds of thousands of people were made homeless. Marvel was kind enough to give us the death count for the “Battle of New York”. They place it at 74. Yes, that’s right, 74. Although the population of Manhattan is 1.632 million and roughly a third of the island was destroyed, if not half. Perhaps Marvel is thinking of only the important lives lost. Common’ man!

Avengers take Manhattan by (fire) storm and other sites are calling this decades new CGI bad ass big fight movies Disaster Porn.

“For so long, Hollywood movies even outside the superhero genre have used mass destruction to raise the stakes for its bigger than life protagonists, but have avoided the details. Though buildings blew up on celluloid before 9/11, after that day (along with improving SFX technology) our appetite for destruction has reached pornographic intensity. But what allows us to revel in the spectacle guilt free, besides the happy endings drenched in magic-hour sunsets, is that we never know the damage beyond the rubble. The movies keep us ignorant on the true fallout, letting us in on the primal thrill without the consequences.”

They go on to share this quote from the Huffington Post. Erwann Michel-Kerjan and Paul Slovic explored the concept of the “collapse of compassion,” where our empathy and sympathy wear out as the numbers get higher.”

“[T]he problem is that action on our part depends upon feelings of compassion that may be hard to arouse and sustain over time, for large numbers of victims,” they write. “We cannot ‘feel the meaning’ associated with threats to 20 million people.”

Symbolism in American cinema was something discussed in a Film History class I took years ago. Some examples I remember– the mid-century big bug movies were about the fear of communism invading America, the early King Kong movies were about the black man’s rise of power and the fear that they would take all the white women. So I can’t help but try to dissect Godzilla v Kong.

The final battle is interesting to me—WHY in Hong Kong and not Tokyo? Hong Kong—the place where in 2019-20 there was the protest,(Anti-Extradition Law Amendment Bill Movement), in the streets SO fierce only a pandemic could end it! Mechagodzilla with its robotic red lights, A.I. woke and self aware, crashing into a fight it wasn’t invited to, thinking it was helping, was a little bit like Communist China.

Honestly, after coming full circle, I changed my mind. Godzilla v Kong and other movies like it are perfect for this time in history. Think about it… Large titans fighting each other without a care for the lives, jobs and homes of the citizens, the little people running between their toes, clinging to anything they can get a hold of to survive. What does that sound like to you? Real life maybe? These movies are perfect metaphors for the way corporations and our out-of-touch government is operating. How wonderful to be SO BIG and strong that you no longer care about those smaller than you. Shame.

Here is a photo that illustrates fairly well how I am feeling today. Do what you can wherever you are. Love your neighbor today and everyday. -Shannon

Meerkats are seen as Seenlada Supat, 11, plays keyboard for animals amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, at a zoo in Chonburi, Thailand May 26, 2021. REUTERS/Soe Zeya Tun

Sleep It Off

Shower Thoughts@TheWeirdWorld

Sleep is kind of like just lying there pretending to be dead until your body is all like: “Fine, but just a little bit”

10:30 AM · Feb 12, 2020·Twitter Web App 635

The link between lack of sleep and cancer is now so strong that the World Health Organization has classified any form of nighttime shift work as a probable carcinogen.” -Mark Walker


Hello from the Pacific Northwest one of the hottest places in America…well for three days anyways. Bellingham, where I work, is wayyyy up north, close to the Canadian border. Normally, we experience all four seasons, and temperatures over 85 melt us. Over the next three days the Pacific Northwest will bake under a once-in-a-millennium HEAT DOME. Have you ever heard of a heat dome before? I haven’t. No one has for 1,000 years! Our high temperature today is suppose to be 99, lower than Seattle, Washington’s 104 and our poor southern sister state Portland, Oregon is 107! It’s not the worst that can happen but it is disruptive and dangerous. Nothing to lose sleep over…possibly.

The heat wave baking the U.S. Pacific Northwest and British Columbia, Canada, is of an intensity never recorded by modern humans. By one measure it is more rare than a once in a 1,000 year event — which means that if you could live in this particular spot for 1,000 years, you’d likely only experience a heat dome like this once, if ever.

The core of the heat dome, as measured by the thickness of the air column over British Columbia and the Pacific Northwest, is – statistically speaking – equivalent to a 1-in-1,000-year event or even a 1-in-10,000-year event. photo credit CBS news June 29, 2021

June started off HOT! The Bellingham Herald reports June is a record breaking month, “Bellingham’s 66-year-old record high for the month of June (93 degrees set June 9, 1955) fell Saturday, June 6, at Bellingham International Airport topping out at 94 degrees at 2:53 p.m., with a heat index of 99… That may best the nearly 12-year-old record for the highest temperature ever recorded in Bellingham.” Another “poor problem” for our area. I’ll guess that of the 91,000 residence in this city, probably 30-40% have some form of AC. However, I have to ask if every home and apartment had air cooling on, could our power grid take it? Maybe… It’s difficult for folks without air conditioning to get sleep on these hot summer days. People like me.

I’m thinking about sleep today. I’m daydreaming about getting a good nights sleep this month. Mr. Walker points out in the video above that sleep is a “reset” for the brain & body. He goes on to report that sleep deprivation can affect genes associated with both DNA repair and DNA damage.
I love sleeping and napping. These are my favorite forms of meditation. Since 2019 I’ve put on some extra pounds and my sleeping has been interrupted by um…being fat. The mid-section fat, often accumulated during mid-life, and/or for women during perimenopause, has become my personal nemesis. That and I would like to publicly protest the high cost of a good mattress. A good mattress is a principal tool for a good night’s sleep. However, the starting price is plus $600 for a mattress of “good” quality. This is a high amount to pay for minimum-wage earners; in some states it is half their monthly salary. We already know there is a connection between income and longevity of life, but dang! The dots connect themselves.
Don’t give me that “survival of the fittest” crap.
Having the right conditions for sleep can lead to a longer life. Mr. Walker says there is proof lack of sleep is the gateway to EVERY DISEASE—that’s all, just every frickin’ disease.

“Every disease that is killing us in developed nations has causal and significant links to a lack of sleep,” he says. “So that classic maxim that you may [have] heard that you can sleep when you’re dead, it’s actually mortally unwise advice from a very serious standpoint.”

My goal today is to go in to work early, get office stuff finished by 2:00, run home and melt into a puddle of human slush, or something as close to this as possible. I’ll probably be in bed about 10:00pm after the earth cools.
The heat wave ends this evening, this weather system will slowly dissipate. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.


Last night I attended a monthly poetry open mic on zoom. I discovered a new-to-me poet, Miranda Krogstad who is from Canada. Below is her beautiful poem about love — love in our blood. The DNA saga I documented 2014-2019 captured for me the idea that PEACE is in our DNA and blood. An amazing combination of cultures, history, nations came together to form a living breathing human. The manifestation of LOVE. Miranda expresses it beautifully, as a poet often can. In this video free style dancers interpret her words.

My deep thought today—(inner)Peace and love are powerful weapons to defend ourselves from disease. When we extend peace, patience and love to others they are gifts of LIFE! Please be safe and COOL today.

Live in Compassion & Kindness

“The highest form of knowledge is empathy.” – Bill Bullard

“Carry out a random act of kindness, with no expectation of reward, safe in the knowledge that one day someone might do the same for you.”
– Princess Diana

“Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a harder battle.” – Plato

“Sometimes it takes only one act of kindness and caring to change a person’s life.” 
–Jackie Chan

“Whether one believes in a religion or not, and whether one believes in rebirth or not, there isn’t anyone who doesn’t appreciate kindness and compassion.” – Dalai Lama



Masks Away!

The other day while walking into Fred Meyer, I noticed a blue facemask blown all up into the grocery store’s landscaping.  Perhaps it fell out of someone’s pocket I thought.

A few days later I saw a cotton child-sized facemask directly outside the Haggens Grocery entrance. About nine months ago this was a hot commodity!  Now it has been walked over, carts rolled over it, and well there it is.  Yes, there it is and here we are—THE END OF THE PANDEMIC.

Beginning July 1st in Washington State masks are optional. It appears many have already thrown them to the wind, literally.  Once again, as with every stage of the pandemic, I hear a variety of opinions.  A few friends have said they will wear a mask in the winter to protect against the flu, others have said they will begin to wear one to work if they feel a cold coming on.  When I walk around the neighborhood trails the maskless masses wave at each other passing by, friendly-like, smiling. No more dramatic 6-foot radius walk-arounds with the “stay the ‘eff away from me you diseased carrying mo-fo” side glance.  The defensive posturing is a thing of the past; I’m placing that back in my toolbox for when I need to walk to my car after 10 pm on Railroad Ave.  Another acquaintance of mine shared a foreboding prediction–the 2020-2021 pandemic was just a warm-up for what is coming next! I mean, in my social circles, people are all over the place!  How is it in your world?  Hope things are calming down a bit.  


This is a graph I stumbled upon way back in our pandemic-innocence of June 2020. I shared it a few times on my platforms.

It illustrates the mental health of an emergency worker responding to a disaster over the course of a year and a half.  This is the “normal” curve of the ups and downs MENTALLY.  Although I am not a nurse on the front lines, I do have an essential job.  I work as a Family Housing Coordinator for shelter and transitional housing.  I worked every day from 2019 until about April of 2021.  Now I get Fridays off which I am very thankful for. 

I’m not embarrassed to say my pandemic journey followed this graph right to the letter.  The lowest point “Disillusionment” hit me about August 2020. My general communication weaknesses, spelling and pronunciation, were magnified.  It was hard to explain to people why I couldn’t type or speak a complete sentence or how I didn’t catch it before I sent the text/email.  I became lethargic at home, watching many movies, and lost myself in the joys of building in creative mode on Minecraft.  (I still like Minecraft) …It was foggy & frustrating.

Reconstruction is next.  Yep.  Right around the corner.  President Biden must have read my blogs because he was like, “What a great idea!  I like the sound of that Reconstruction…the strengthening of infrastructure across the NATION, for the nation…? hmmmm. …Someone get me a pen–”

What will the personal reconstruction and strengthening of YOUR infrastructure look like? I’m working on exercise and budgeting my money. Also, I met with the poetry discussion group IN PERSON last weekend and noticed I was talking like an email or as if I was giving a presentation on zoom. Something got lost over the last 15 months of social distancing. I think we’ll all find those skills again.

Sending you good thoughts today. You’re doing the best you can with what ya got. You got this!
Here is my current mood expressed in a meme. -Shannon

Seeing Red

As I zip around, up and down the I-5 corridor my heart skips a beat everytime I see RED. Mazda red to be exact. Swimming in a pool of monochrome and muted tones of blue, a sun beam spotlights this glowing red car radiating crimson root chakra energy down the freeway. You sexy thing you!

I’ve been noticing this red for a few years and this week I decided to find out what’s up with this color. Why does it attract my attention so? How was it created? It’s no surprise to me that Mazda calls their signature red “Soul Red Crystal”.

It seems Mazda is very proud of this color. They wanted to reinvent “red” and in doing so painted themselves into a corner (pun intended) because their “new red” could only be applied by hand. Not an efficient process for an international car company. So, Japan being Japan broke down their new process called, Takuminuri, which translates to English as “artisan coloring,” and taught their painting robots to duplicate the techniques of Mazda’s best craftsmen. Of course they did.

Creating Soul Red Crystal was a challenging process, and it required Mazda to reinvent the way cars are painted. Like any beautiful object, the way light dances across its surface is part of the beauty. The interplay of light and form inspired Mazda to create a paint with exceptional depth and reflective quality.

Mazda web site

Mazda goes on to say that they , “…view cars as art, and our desire is to have customers be emotionally moved by their car before even starting the engine.” Hmmmm…”emotionally moved?” I would argue that every manifestation of human emotional movements are activated just being near this color! It’s too sexy for it’s shirt to quote Right Said Fred.

Not only is this paint possibly the fanciest color out there right now, but it is also the most difficult to fix. But what did you expect from the Princess of Paint? “There’s no way to get around this…[Soul Red Crystal is] more complicated than what you’d find on any other car at their price points…” says Repairer Driven News. The paint chips more often than regular boring paint, and is more difficult to match. Well I think it’s still the hottest thing on the freeway. What do you think?

I hope you enjoyed learning more about this car color as I did. Here is my current mood expressed in a meme. I’m off to the races! Take care of yourself and those around you. -Shannon

Pinkie Crack

When the Lockdown began I tried writing on my website every day to…well, I’m not sure why. Perhaps I was trying to document the experience first hand or maybe connect with my neighbors or contribute something to the whole event. After about a month and a half I had to rest. We all did really, didn’t we? We rested another year! I am embarrassed to admit I really, genuinely thought the Lockdown would last 30 days and life would go back to normal. It was my mom and the more mature folks in my social circle who predicted it would be a year before folks returned to the office or to school, “a year if we’re lucky” they said.

Washington State went into Lockdown March 2020. Our state governor has declared beginning July 1st, wearing masks in public will be optional, not mandatory. *Some folks have already stopped wearing masks after being fully vaccinated. It’s a little confusing right now isn’t? I have personally decided to wear my mask until July 1st. However, last week I had an “Oh shit!” moment walking into Lowes Hardware store. About halfway down an isle I saw a person with a mask on, and realized I forgot to put my mask on. I just freakin’ walked into the store barefaced like I had no respect for all human life on the planet. What the hell? I touched my face to confirm and sure enough–NO MASK. However on that fine June day, I noticed fairly quickly that half of the patrons and clerks were NOT wearing masks. (?!?!) Was I safe from social condemnation? Yes, from HALF of the people apparently. “OK, so today I’ll be one of THOSE people.” I joked to myself. I went directly to the isles I needed, checked out at self-pay and hustled out of there.

Can I just say how exhausted I am of all this. One year and three months of all this. I’m using hand sanitizer throughout my day, so much so that occasionally my skin cracks. Has this happen to you? If you are fortunate enough to have access to an ample supply of hand sanitizer and/or you’ve been a front line worker the whole 15 months I imagine you’re skin has also cracked.

Here is a picture of a recent crack on a fold of my skin. (BTW, a very difficult angle for a photo) Under my right pinkie is a new “line”. A couple of years ago I studied palmistry for a story. I knew this area of the hand is about marriage. As a middle-aged divorced woman I giggled a bit. Was a new marriage being forged into my future or perhaps another being wiped out? Either way it required hydrogen peroxide to heal. My mind traveled down that thought a bit, farther than necessary as I often do… How wonderful it would be if troubled couples could simply dip themselves in a healing solution to fix their relationships. Many arguments stem from past hurts, hurts and calluses that were formed before the marriage began. We sometimes bring those unresolved events into our new relationships. As I date a little these last few years I find the most attractive dates are those who are actively working on self improvement. In your 40’s and 50’s it’s time for a “refresh” I think, whether you are single or in-couple. You are no longer who were at 22, or even 32. What do you think?

Here is a meme for my mood today. I’ll try not to take myself too seriously. Hope you have a super day. -Shannon

*Fully vaccinated people can resume activities without wearing a mask or physically distancing, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.

Friend or Foe?

Continuing education classes continue even during a pandemic. Everything is online of course. I do miss the in-person classes, especially the visual art form of Abstract Hostess Etiquette displayed on a long table near the door. I always like to see what someone came up with. They might have a continental breakfast, with the row of hospitality-sized coffee pots, labeled “coffee”, “decaf”, and “hot water”, a bowl of ice with creamer dropped in the middle of it, those little paper cups with the folder butterfly-wing finger holders, and a tray of crumbly cookies that will litter your top and lap.

don’t eat the cookies; they’re dangerous. Photo by Jason Jarrach on Unsplash

These are classes many jobs require workers to take to help keep folks up to date and skills sharpened. says, ‘As continuing education supports lifelong learning, it helps ensure mental health professionals remain curious and critical thinkers who are well-equipped to provide quality care for their clients.’

I’m currently learning about caregiving for individuals with behavioral health issues such as psychotic, bipolar, addictive and personality disorders, PTSD, alcoholism, and suicidality. While processing the material one afternoon, my brain began to think about the condition of diagnosed Schizophrenia. It is considered a psychotic disorder characterized by delusion and/or hallucinations. The psychosis can also be caused by bipolar disorder, depression, trauma, and drugs, usually temporary. Here is the important part—-> It is generally considered Schizophrenia if the voices or hallucinations are benevolent or encourage violent thoughts or action.

A delusion is a belief that does not fit reality. They tend to be unshakable, unarguable, and unchangeable by the person experiencing them. A hallucination is a disturbance in perception, such as seeing and hearing things that others don’t see or hear.

What caught my attention are recent studies about brain activity during an auditory hallucination episode. Brain imaging shows that both Broca’s area and Wernicke’s area (speech production and hearing) are active during auditory hallucinations. Auditory hallucinations are real. Limited to being heard only inside the person’s head. It is not their imagination. The same activity is present when we are having a conversation with a real person. It is a brain defect possibly caused by the overproduction of dopamine or the insufficient supply of glutamate signaling. With time and counseling, a person with Schizophrenia can learn to tell if a voice is someone in the room or being generated inside their brain. The training on this condition ended with a note, “It is the person’s discomfort that should guide the treatment, and whether or not the voices are helpful or harmful.

Custom Fit Spirits

It’s interesting to me that there are classes and books to help people find certain desirable voices, such as, well the Voice of God. If you’re going to add a voice why not go big, right? Christians, for example, may attend a class to learn how to identify the voice of the Holy Spirit. I’ll give you a hint, it never tells you to do anything that is not in the bible. Easy right?

Learning how to recognize the voice of your Spirit Guide is important to some people. An article, “How to Connect with Your Spirit Guides”, in Goop came up with these helpful hints that involve leaving your body and jumping up to the astral plane to visit them.

Spirit guides exist in the realm of infinite possibilities and are not confined by time or space. There is no limit to what they can do for us. In fact, the more they help us, the more they ascend. I encourage my students to assign at least three tasks to their guides before parting ways. Spirit guides can help with anything big—divorce, health concerns. Or small—like parking spaces, or motivation to do the dishes or go to work.

Then there are some people who do not have an internal monologue. NO VOICE inside their head. This is difficult for me to comprehend, but apparently, it’s true. There is no “middle-man” between thought and choice of action/no action. “…Additionally, not everyone has a verbal internal monologue. The looser flow of thoughts and experiences, verbal or not, is called a stream of consciousness, which can also refer to a related technique in literature.” (Wikipedia)

It seems there are some people who have voices in their minds that don’t want them, others who seek out new voices and then a few that have no conversation going on at all between the ears. This little study of internal dialogue has been interesting. I have no answers, but I do have new insights. Violent voices, self talk that brings you down should not be given energy to form into action. If you have a friend who mentions troublesome voices they should connect with their doctor about it. In the meantime, you can say, “that must be difficult. I’m here if you need someone to talk to.” In this time of social distancing, we can all listen and talk with each other. Support yourself and your friends with helpful conversation.

Here is my current mood expressed in a meme. Take care -Shannon,influence%20the%20need%20for%20care.,a%20related%20technique%20in%20literature.

cover Photo by Guillaume de Germain on Unsplash


Thursday Share Day
Writers LOVE words. Can the right words change the nation? Yes.
The other day a friend sent this news article over to me, and I’m letting you all in on it. This is not the first time I’ve read about the Bellingham Police using their Crisis Negotiator Team to de-escalate a situation. In an era of bullets being used to de-escalate violence, it’s refreshing to find a place on this planet that really, actually, uses words. Let me know what you think.

“On May 18, 2021 Whatcom Transportation Authority (WTA) passenger LaKisha A. Bolden, 44, apparently upset the bus on which she was riding was not headed downtown, got sufficiently angry with the bus driver that he needed to make an unscheduled stop. Bolden looked like she was walking off the bus when, completely unprovoked, pulled out a 4-inch knife and attacked another rider, stabbing her four times. After Bellingham Police arrived on scene and de-escalated the situation, Bolden was subsequently arrested, without further incident, for assault in the first degree and booked into the Whatcom County Jail.

Bolden and several other riders were on a WTA bus travelling on Old Fairhaven Parkway, when she realized they were not heading downtown and got angry about that. The driver safely pulled the bus over to let Bolden off. It appeared Bolden was leaving, but instead pulled out a knife and stabbed another rider. The injured rider fought back and was able to get distance from Bolden and flee the bus to safety. The rest of the riders and bus driver also safely made it off the bus. Bolden remained alone on the bus, still armed with the knife.

Bellingham Police (BPD) arrived and established a safety perimeter around the bus and shut down traffic on Old Fairhaven Parkway for the safety of motorists. The bus was disabled to prevent Bolden from being able to create a further crisis and danger to the public by driving it away. While the patrol officers maintained a safe distance, members of the BPD Crisis Negotiator Team (CNT) were called to establish contact with Bolden, engage in conversation to de-escalate the situation and have Bolden surrender.

Shortly after starting the conversation with Bolden, crisis negotiators were able to convince Bolden to step off the bus and surrender peacefully. Bolden was handcuffed and arrested for assault 1st degree and taken to the Whatcom County Jail.

The victim of the stabbing went to PeaceHealth St. Joseph Medical Center Emergency Department for treatment for non-life-threatening stab wounds to her hand and leg.”

Here is my current mood expressed in a meme. Take care of yourself and those you love. -Shannon


Happy May 4th!
Hey you missed it. I was at the beach. Didn’t see you there. What’s up with that? I went by myself and half of the town. Wrote a little draft of a poem, you can check it out below. I didn’t take my phone. I took two books, a notebook, and a mask just in case it got crazy out there. It did not get crazy. However, I do hope I got a tan. A tan would help make the dark circles under my eyes less notable.
The area where I live has been awarded the opportunity to go outside without a mask. As a citizen I am a little confused about the phases. Specifically, when will we reach the POST-pandemic phase. As a goal oriented person, I’d like to know what we are shooting for. The hospital in my town was not overrun with COVID cases like I see on the news, you know patients in the hallways, and lines of refrigerated cars loaded up with bodies. Thank goodness. According to the Washington State COVID Dashboard, there have been 378,225 deaths confirmed as COVID, and 91 of them from Whatcom County. I will keep an eye out for the target numbers the CDC wants to see in order to declare the pandemic OVER.

So I’m on vacation, day 4. I spent the first three days freaking out every 20-30 minutes thinking I had to be somewhere, call someone, or send an e-mail. Today, I think, I am finally chillin’. The beach is all over me and I’m not going to wash it off, because WebMD says “Enjoy it!”

Negative ions are odorless, tasteless, and invisible molecules that we inhale in abundance in certain environments. Think mountains, waterfalls, and beaches. Once they reach our bloodstream, negative ions are believed to produce biochemical reactions that increase levels of the mood chemical serotonin, helping to alleviate depression, relieve stress, and boost our daytime energy.
They are created in nature as air molecules break apart due to sunlight, radiation, and moving air and water. You may have experienced the power of negative ions when you last set foot on the beach or walked beneath a waterfall. 
Generally speaking, negative ions increase the flow of oxygen to the brain; resulting in higher alertness, decreased drowsiness, and more mental energy,” says Pierce J. Howard, PhD, author of The Owners Manual for the Brain: Everyday Applications from Mind Brain Research and director of research at the Center for Applied Cognitive Sciences in Charlotte, N.C.
“They also may protect against germs in the air, resulting in decreased irritation due to inhaling various particles that make you sneeze, cough, or have a throat irritation.”

—protects against germs and offers decreased irritation? Sounds perfect. I’m going back tomorrow. I’m guessing by the time Monday comes around I may be too mellow to move. I smiled a little thinking about going to bed without a shower, fading off to sleep with the smell of salty air in my hair. Not sure why but that sound SO romantic, kinda gross, but also romantic.

Draft: How Long Were You At Beach?

I arrived while the great Horse-Chestnut
shade still covered the long pine log

I saw a red kayak come in
I watched a yellow kayak go out
I saw a yellow kayak come in
I watched two green kayaks go out

I left before they returned
I left when the shade was gone

How I feel described in meme. I’m going back to my Longmire marathon.
Take it easy.