It's a mess on First Avenue in Sandpoint, but that's not stopping the throngs of peeps.
I've heard recently about the piles of gravel and all the heavy equipment but saw it for the first time last night.
We parked over on North Second and walked to MickDuffs, like we always do.
The pub was not completely packed when we arrived, and our friend Nancy had already secured a table.
As we visited and ate, however, the groups kept coming through the door, many after a substantial wait outside.
Later, we walked down the street for ice cream at Panhandle Cone and Coffee.
The place was buzzing with activity as folks continued coming through the door while we sat, enjoyed our ice cream and visited with Emma and her friends.
The downtown construction is an inconvenience, but the downtown businesses have established themselves well enough that patrons are dealing with the inconvenience of walking a little more than usual.
Besides, Sandpoint is a walking town, right?
My main impression, however, after our downtown socializing last night is that our little town is on the cusp of no longer being "our little town" anymore.
Throughout the spring and summer months, I've been amazed with the numbers of people on the sidewalks, even at times when no big event is happening.
We've been discovered, for sure. That's been very evident this past year.
I hope the powers-that-be will continue to do everything possible to maintain the aspects of our community that make it so alluring for both its locals and its visitors.
It's obvious from this summer that the massive amount of downtown road construction (Cedar Street was dug up for several week and is now paved) has not deterred the popularity of one of America's Most Beautiful Small Towns.
While at MickDuffs, I had a chance to visit briefly with three individuals I met eight years ago. At that time Ali, Vivi and Vince were lined up in infant chairs on the floor at their parents' home.
Well, now they are proud students and from the looks of their apparel, they're sports fans.
I wrote a column about the Gunter triplets back then and always enjoy seeing them with Mom and Dad.
Their dad Clint tells me he wishes now that they're a bit more independent that time would start slowing down as they continue to grow into delightful and very charming youngsters.
Great to see them and their parents last night.
Shortly after I post this morning, my sister Laurie will be riding in her last class at the Arabian Sport Horse Nationals, and she'll be trying for a clean sweep of five Top Ten ribbons and plaques in five classes.
Yesterday she took sixth in a class of more than 30 entrants, noting "we fought hard for this one."
So, good luck, Laurie and Pache.
And, that's it for this Saturday morning. Hope everyone has a nice day.
|Ali, Vince and Vivi: cool and sweet triplets!|