Forty-four years and the counting is over!!

Apr 6, 2023 | 2 comments

In the summer of 1978, I moved to the Peninsula full time.  I would live in Oysterville, dividing my time between my folks’ place in the H.A. Espy House across from the church and my Uncle Willard’s “Little Red Cottage” a few doors to the south.  In the fall I would begin teaching in the Ocean Beach School District and, in the meantime, I would begin the process of building a house on my acreage on the bay, about a mile south of the village.

Ossie Steiner had agreed to do the building — to begin after he  finished his part of renovating the Historic Oysterville Church.  His step-sons Guenter and Wolfgang Mack would join him.  I would act as “General Contractor” (with a LOT of guidance from Ossie!)  Meanwhile, Ollie Oman put in a 1,000 foot road from Sandridge to the building site, Bill Niemi located a good water source for my well, and the little mill at the old Martin Bog cut the framing lumber and cedar siding to my specifications.

Soon I had PUD put in a trench beside my road into which would go the electric line, the telephone line, the water line.  I called Cox Cable in Long Beach — at least my memory says “Cox” but there have been many changes over the years — to ask about getting Cable TV.  “Well, we can lay the cable from the road to the building site using the PUD trench, but we aren’t yet installed north of Joe Johns Road so there won’t be a hook-up yet.  It might be a while.”

Nyel and I lived happily for twenty years in that house with an antenna jury-rigged by one  of our ham radio operator friends.  Periodically we’d call about the progress of the cable as one company after another took over the business.  By the time we moved into the Family House in Oysterville in 1998, we were getting internet service through the PUD, later through CenturyLink, most recently through StarLink — none of whom were at all satisfactory.

TODAY, 44 YEARS LATER, SPECTRUM CAME AND HOOKED ME UP!  They had begun laying their CABLE along the right-of-way by my  house last summer.  I began calling them just after Christmas to find out what was going on.  And then today, slick as a whistle, it took Casey, Riley, Justin, and Kodi just four more hours to get my “devices” hooked up and running!

They told me that I am the first in the village to have CABLE.  Well, I should hope so.  I’ve been trying for almost half of my life for this hookup!  YAY!


  1. Kristina Jones

    Dearest Cuz, You have the patience of Job… and I don’t mean the Steve kind, but the actual biblical person… You Deserve To Have Cable and (as Uncle Rees would say) “By God, You Got It!” Congrats, Love, KK

  2. Una B

    Oh, Sydney, your saga about cable access is so descriptive and typifies the adaptations brought to our little peninsula over the years. So much has changed! Yet, this 28-mile long spit of sand retains its charming character. The image of the jury-rigged antenna made me smile. I can’t say how many built-arounds I have adjusted to over the years, products of our many talented fellow citizens.

    It is that quality which most impresses me about this place – the way friends and neighbors always show up to make things better. The Great Coastal Gale of ’07 proved that this isolated strip off the mainland relies heavily on volunteerism during both individual and communal moments of need.

    Thanks for sharing your cable saga.


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