Arrow-right Camera

Idaho Voices

Flash! She labels CdA ‘top town’

Sun., July 12, 2009

After traveling 1,500 miles in three days with a rescued pit bull named Loren, travel writer Michelle Sathe wouldn’t be blamed if she phoned in her first impression of Coeur d’Alene. The Santa Clarita Valley Signal writer resisted temptation and checked into the Bennett Bay Inn instead. She snoozed. Then, she gushed. “Gorgeous” was one of the adjectives she used to describe Coeur d’Alene. After stopping at Java on Sherman for a bagel with lox and cream cheese, a massive blueberry scone and an Arnold Palmer, Sathe took a 37-mile drive. She writes: “The drive was amazing, offering a view of the incredible bridge that perched above the lake, as well as some dazzling waterfront properties and the many boats docked alongside them. Mountains and water – there is no better combo for beauty and harmony, in my opinion.” ’Ere she left Coeur d’Alene en route to continue her seven-week sabbatical at Mukilteo, Wash., 335 miles away, Sathe dubbed the Lake City “the top town in the United States to live.” No surprises here. You can read about her travels with Loren at

Good naked?

If you regularly read Scanner Traffic at Huckleberries Online, you know that two couples in an older brown boat attracted attention as they motored past North Idaho College Beach recently. Seems the four people aboard were naked as a politician’s ambition. Sun worshippers on the beach wanted marine deputies to do something about the naughty boaters. Dunno how this played out. But the display of flesh launched a blog conversation re: “good naked” and “bad naked.” (Think: Jerry Seinfeld.) John Austin, ex-CdA finance director, wasn’t concerned about the situation. It’s not an unusual sight in his neck of the woods (Harrison area). Not only are nude boaters near his ’hood “good naked,” John said, “they are DAMN good naked.” On the Coeur d’Alene River, out of Harrison, he said, it “is a common place to witness naked people recreating (and sometimes re-creating) in the good ol’ summertime. Marine deputies should be careful when they encounter such a thing – particularly if their handcuffs are involved.”


No matter what others think, GOP Chairman Norm Semanko had kind words for Sandpoint-born, soon-to-be-former-guv of Alaska Sarah Palin: “Having been born in Idaho, and graduating from the University of Idaho, you have to be proud of the way she’s conducted herself and handled things.” OK, the lead-in clause doesn’t match up with the pronoun (for you English teachers), but you get the point … Meanwhile, Bruce Reid wasn’t as forgiving in his regular Slate mag column: “When did the GOP become such a bunch of quitters? What ever happened to the party of Larry Craig and his you’ll-never-take-me- from-this-stall-alive spirit?” Bruce, of course, is the son of Scott and Mary Lou Reed, who served in Bill Clinton’s White House … Poll: Only 10 percent of 96 respondents to a Huckleberries Online poll last week said nothing should be done to rein in personal watercraft users after two fatalities and a serious accident so far this boating season. However, a combined 34 percent want a minimum driving age, and another 32 percent want mandatory instruction and licensing.

Parting shot

You know what a modern-day version of a Dear John letter sounds like? A message taped to the front door of the now-closed North Idaho Fitness Tuesday provides some idea: “Dear Valued Customers; we are sorry to inform you that due to current financial conditions, it has become necessary to close this business. Thank you for your patronage.” A Berry Picker arrived for her usual workout Tuesday morning to find the note and a stunned instructor who didn’t know about the closure. Also, no one was answering the phones. Said the Berry Picker: “Luckily, I paid by monthly electronic withdrawal and was able to stop that business. I feel for the people who paid annually because they will probably have a battle on their hands to get any kind of compensation.” Be careful out there.

Click here to comment on this story »