The story: it was a fun day in the middle of the week and I had the boys with me. Papa (Chris) was at work so the three of us were exploring. We happened onto Fish Park. We started trekking through the park and discovered that it’s actually an amazing place. Throughout there is fish themed art, like salmon made of driftwood on pedestals, or an enormous bike rack shaped like a fish… And there are also informational signs everywhere explaining the ecosystem of the park and the salmon who use the streams. We actually saw several salmon just hanging out in the water.
Now, this isn’t a normal park for kids. This one has walking trails that lead through the woods and cross several slow-flowing creeks. These creeks feed into some smaller, very placid swamps. It’s all very beautiful.
Since this particular day was really hot, we all decided to have a sit in the shade and rest for a moment. This picture is the last one of the three of us before the disaster.
We got up and started walking again when we came to another beautiful, calm area just off the main creek. Before I could stop him, our oldest continued to walk forward onto the perfectly solid and green vegetation that lay before him. Yeah, that wasn’t grass. It was algae. It was so solid and still that he thought it was solid ground and walked and fell right into the swamp. I was holding the baby still so had to be careful too. As I got to him he was struggling to get out, continually losing balance backwards and getting swampier and swampier. Luckily it was only a foot or so deep, but under it all it was mud that was sucking him down.
I was able to grab his arm and pull him out. He was…startled. Actually startled doesn’t begin to cover it. He was certain that the swamp was out to get him. Anyways, we headed directly back to the car, baking the swamp stink into all of our clothes and skin. Once at the car, everybody stripped. The clothes went into a big pile in the back of the van and we raced home to the shower. If you’ve seen the film the Labyrinth, then you know about the bog of eternal stench. Yes, I think that’s where we were.
Why do people love this picture: Catching a moment with kids standing still is precious. Kids don’t often stand still. That and striking colors in the swamp make this a great photo. It’s one of my favorites of me and my guys.
Fun Fact: the Poulsbo Fish Park is a great place for visitors to learn about the trek of the salmon and how the local landscape impacts the ecosystem housing this vital fish. If you’re visiting Little Norway, aka Poulsbo, from Seattle this is a great addition to your day. Learn something and get fresh air. Beware of the swamp though.