The Next Best Thing!

Jul 1, 2020 | 2 comments

Summertime Velvet – Photo by Tucker

I think I’m safe in saying these two things about my friend Tucker: he likes to visit and he’s a great storyteller.  I’ve known about the visiting part since way before he and Carol retired and came to live in their place on School Street full-time.  Carol had not yet retired from her nursing job in Portland and Tucker would come down to work on their place or maybe to bring a load of “stuff” that he was gradually moving down.  He’d invariably stop by to say “hello” and chat for a few minutes — about Oysterville history, about boats and his volunteer work at the Oregon Maritime Museum, about his pinball machines and his penchant for collecting them.

White Pelicans Over Willapa Bay – Photo by Tucker

When they finally became full-time neighbors (in 2008?? 2010??) it was a no-brainer to ask Tucker and Carol to join our Friday Night Gatherings.  There are very few (if any) that Tucker has missed and from early on he has become the focus of everyone’s attention with a mystery package that he reveals  toward the end of each two-hour get-together.  We have come to count on Tucker’s “show and tell” and the story that invariably goes along with it.  I should clarify that Tucker’s “collections” go far beyond pinball machines — there are family keepsakes, model boats,  World War II (and maybe WWI) memorabilia, old signs and tools and… the list seems endless.

Oysterville Visitor – Photo by Tucker

During these days of sheltering, of course, we aren’t hosting gatherings on a regular basis — just when the weather is perfect and we can be outside and socially distanced.   About the only times we see Tucker is when our paths converge on the way to the post office…  or when he and Carol are going for a walk and we happen to be in the garden as they pass by.  We miss the visits and the sharing.  A lot!  So it was especially grand the other day to receive a whole batch of photographs — seventeen! — from him via email.  For many of them, we could kind of read between the lines even though Tucker hadn’t sent the “stories” that we are sure went with most of them. With or without the stories, though, they were the next best thing to a real visit!  A visit with show and tell!  Thanks, Tucker, as always!



  1. Jean Nitzel

    I didn’t get to many Friday nights before all this stay at home stuff happened and now that I can, we can’t. Looking forward to more good visits with you and Nyel and all your very interesting friends! So enjoy your daily postings, keep it up! Love you guys!

    • sydney

      Jean, to quote a Jill Trenholm song — “We are looking forward to looking back on all this!” Whenever we start getting back together again, I’ll let you know!!


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