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WOODHEAT
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Alaska - Part 1

Thursday, September 08, 2011

Alaska! How many years we've talked about a trip to Alaska! It was always that dream trip that was going to happen someday, but it always seemed that someday kept getting pushed off to a later date. There always were obstacles that would pop up: a house that we had moved out of but resisted being sold; a bite from a tiny tick that resulted in a pacemaker, the uncertainty of aging parents health, a problematic back for well over 40 years that finally ended up in surgery and then took forever to recover from. One roadblock after another - Life.

And then there was the discussions of what kind of trip it should be. Maybe we should buy a big new Harley hog and ride cross country like Peter Fonda. Or maybe we could buy a new motor home and turn the trip into a summer long adventure taking in the Canadian Rockies on the same trip. Maybe not - too long away from the grandchildren. How about one of the cruises? That seems to be one of the most popular ways to get a taste of this "Last Wilderness". An easy approach but so far cruises haven't been our style. Back to the motorhome idea, but this time we'll fly to Anchorage and rent one there and spend a couple of weeks RVing around. How does one decide where to go? Alaska is Huge!! ... and then suddenly like a midsummer storm, it just happened!

Glor (know as Luv here on SP) was researching Alaska on the internet one more time when a new approach flashes on the screen - an adventure tour of Alaska! A ten day tour with a guide that includes several hikes, white water rafting, sea kayaking, canoeing, a flight on a bush plane and maybe a glimpse of the aurora! We could pick a tour that utilized tenting or a slightly more expensive one with us staying in lodges and cabins. Hmmmm, the last tour of the year was in just 2 weeks!

Okay, why not!!! We called "Get Up and Go Tours" and there was still room for us. A little discussion and the decision was made. Let's do it! (the lodge tour though - it appeals a little bit more to this 62 year old body! LOL)

We were on our way!

Let the adventures begin!

Life is good!

to be continued
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  • OUTDOORSDC
    So, among the many different reasons that I love this post, there's one reason that really stands out. It has to do with your "adopted dad" status. :)

    After my dad passed away (it will be five years this December), one of my brothers was sorting through his stuff. Well, my dad loved the magazine Fur, Fish and Game and collected stacks and stacks of them. He kept them in an old school metal cabinet in the hallway off of my parents' bedroom. And that's where my brother was this particular afternoon, sorting through stacks of magazines in this enormous cabinet, flipping through one of the magazines and finding an envelope full of cash. My brother was stunned, so he went to my mom and asked her what the money was all about. She had no idea. It was a surprise to all of us, and no one could say with certainty why my father had been tucking away this money in an envelope in a random magazine. He didn't even remember about it in the three months when he and my mom were putting everything in order. What on earth could it be about?

    Finally, my mom decided that the money must have been something my dad had been setting aside for a big trip - probably the trip to Alaska that they had always talked about but never taken. My mom figured that my dad was going to surprise her for a birthday or anniversary present.

    So in the time since my dad has passed away, I've slowly (but not always consciously) developed this hunger to live my life as fully as possible. I've discovered meditation, yoga, climbed mountains, did super long hikes. In the past few years, it's as if I can't get enough of the woods, of my backyard. I've been seeking out adventures that have been incredibly peaceful and grounding, or challenging as all get it, or scary enough that I have almost wanted to back out. This is how it's been for me, and it's been amazing.

    But while I've been running around doing all of these things and seeing all of these places, my dad has always been on my mind. And so a few weeks ago, in the middle of my meditation class, I had this realization that my dad and I were both adventurers - me on an adventure to see all of the places he never had a chance to see (Alaska) and my dad on this adventure to a place that I might not see for a long time, or maybe I'll see tomorrow, but a place that I could not even begin to imagine or envision until I'm there with him.

    So anyhow, the reason I'm telling you all of this is because I read your story here (proceeded by a blog post, I see, that has something to do with 40 years of marriage) and I want to tell you that...well, in your own words, life is very good! The fact that you finally made this trip - to Alaska of all places - and that you did it in the most adventurous style possible...well, it just cements for me that you are doing it all right. It also makes me feel like there's more coincidence here than just you being the the first person to invite me to the deck and you offering to be my adopted dad...

    Anyhow, I can't wait to read installment 2, but I'm going to wait a bit before I read it. For now, it feels really good to just think about this wonderful trip you planned with your 40+ year partner. And the fact that you did it.

    xoxo
    Shelley
    1835 days ago
  • MIAMIA7
    Oh Wood...how exciting! Can't wait to here all about it! Have a wonderful time...but I know you both will!
    Anne
    1844 days ago
  • JAMES731
    Like button on Spark? Yes please, good post.
    1844 days ago
  • KAYOTIC
    Ohhhh great start! I'm going to buck the trend and say I might take the tent.... emoticon especially since the lodge is getting so full!
    1844 days ago
  • CAITLINATOR
    I love when all the pieces come together like this - meant to be! Can't wait to hear part two!
    1844 days ago
  • KITS4CHANGE
    Lodges for me too! Isn't it starting to get cold up there this time of year anyway? It's their Fall, right?
    1844 days ago
  • CHOCLAHOLIC
    Love stories like this.... can't wait for part 2 ! (for me, I might have gone with the tent tour, just because it would be a bit less expensive, but then again, I'll bet those lodges were awesome!)
    1844 days ago
  • KELPIE57
    Looking forward to the rest.....lots of stories to come, I am sure!
    1844 days ago
  • SNOWSNAKE
    OOOOOOOOOOOOOh yes...Lodge all the way, thumbs up!! I can't wait to hear more, I loved what little we did have the chance to see and experience, and it left us wanting more!!I love Alaska!! emoticon
    1845 days ago
  • MAUIMA
    Love it!
    Lodge and all...
    Anxious and excited to hear more.
    Thank you for sharing my friend.
    1845 days ago
  • CASSIOEPIA
    Woohoo! Sounds like the start of a great adventure. And I'm not 62, but I think I'd also choose the lodge over the tent in Alaska.
    1845 days ago
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