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The Slice: Spirits won’t sink, even when the dock finally does

They’re all still boatin’, even though the dock’s barely floatin’.
They’re all still boatin’, even though the dock’s barely floatin’.

There’s something evocative about a dock falling apart.

You might think the sight would be sad or depressing. But for Christine Elias, there’s more to it. Much more.

She sent a photo of a dilapidated dock formerly connected to her neighbor’s place on Lake Coeur d’Alene.

“The dock is about 40-plus years old,” she wrote. “It was the top dock on our bay then. The posts were painted white with red tops, and lights were on each piling.”

All the neighbors used it. “The owners were very generous with the space.”

But time, storms and record snowfalls took their toll. Year by year, it sagged and sank.

Up until just a few years ago people still tied boats to it, but had to get out to them with other watercraft.

“The last time the dock was used was when my husband paddled the canoe to the dock to attend a meeting in town. The boards gave loose and tossed my husband in the water.”

It’s now off-limits.

All the neighbors have come up with alternatives for securing their boats.

Now the foundering reminder of yesterday sits low in the water, a rotting reverie of summers past.

“We don’t know if the dock will ever get replaced,” said Elias. “It may be an eyesore to some. But there are a lot of great memories on that dock.”

Please rise: “Last weekend we camped in our RV at the Spokane Gun Club for the Inland Empire Trap Shooting event,” wrote Karen Valandra. “There were more than 100 shooters. On Friday morning I was just sitting in our camper as opening ceremonies began. The gentleman camping next to us was busy getting things out from under his RV when ‘O Canada’ came over the loudspeaker.

“He stood at attention with his hat over his heart and did not move until that and ‘The Star-Spangled Banner’ had concluded. He was all alone. He just knows who he is and what he believes and I was very moved by this demonstration of respect for two countries.”

Today’s Slice question: In your experience, do those who share your first name tend to be good people?

Write The Slice at P. O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210; call (509) 459-5470; email Fewer people seem to get “Far Side” references.

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