Tuesday, October 25, 2005
This past week has been a hodge podge of unrelated stimuli and I could never grab just one item to focus on and blog about so I went a week without updating - not because I didn't want to, just because I couldn't imagine any one thing to be earth shattering enough to pass on.
Of course looking back now I can see my days were full of wonder if I had only stepped back and reflected. My Dad called me and we had a wonderful conversation for over 90 minutes. My niece called me from the hospital to tell me about her surgery, her life and her courage. The last one of my workers quit smoking creating a smoke-free environment from an office where everyone but me smoked 30 months ago. My brother and I miss each other deeply as we become reacquainted with mornings where the other is not there to share coffee and conversation; a dawning awareness that our absences define our relationship, not our yearly visits. The girls and I share a hockey game, one daughter following the action with a passion, her enthusiasm bursting forth, and the other daughter just happy to be there with her sister and Dad, resting her head on my shoulder and smiling. The days are down to nine hours now, and the windshield is always frosty. Work is . . . . more work than usual as I deal with the second visit from the owner this month, and the newly minted non-smokers are cranky. A house burns down two blocks away, a grim reminder of the fragile nature of "things". I chat on-line with my son's college roommates, mutual respect for Trevor underlying our kidding and posturing.
My week was full of amazing sights and sounds and experiences, all certainly blog-worthy, and all part of my road to the apex - I just couldn't see it at the time, I needed focus. I encourage you all to reflect back over the past week and see it for the wonderful journey that it represented- leave me a comment about the most significant moment of your week!
Tuesday, October 18, 2005
That two weeks of transition weather we call fall in Alaska is upon us and you only have to watch the snowline march down the mountains to know that winter is not far away. It is a time for reflection as we leave another summer behind and make plans for next year. The steelhead are running in the Anchor River until pan ice shuts down the fishery in late November, a sure sign of the changing seasons.
How different our seasonal preparations have become - we stabilize the gas in the lawn mower, change the oil on the snowblower, and maybe change the tires over on our cars. After one last look at the lawn to make sure there is nothing there we will be looking for in February, we make sure our library card is at hand and we're ready for winter. It's easy to forget the mighty force of nature when comfort is just a touch of the thermostat away - it is a good time to pause on the road to the apex and give thanks for all we have and keep all those far less fortunate in our prayers as winter approaches.
Friday, October 14, 2005
Our two daughters are so very different in how they relate to others - one is super social, making friends effortlessly and instantly gauging the mood of a room and knowing instinctively how to make things better; the other is much more emotionally cautious and slow to warm up to strangers until they have truly earned her trust. Kerri describes this perfectly - "Lydia is stingy with her love".
I've come to realize that I am stingy with my love too. I have very few close friends and have been in relatively few relationships in my life. I love, protect and defend my family passionately but rarely let anyone in the inside circle. I'm not sure if this is a fault, a strength, or a neutral trait but I do know that my Dad's wife Penny has been the victim of my stinginess, and for that I apologize.
Two years ago I experienced first hand what my Dad felt as my sons were slow to warm to my new love and future wife. They, like me, made the mistake of comparing this new person to their Mom instead of just appreciating what a wonderful person they are in their own right.
Penny - you are now in my inner circle and I promise to love, protect and defend you as passionately as everyone else. You make my Dad happy and you are a fantastic mother who has never done anything but offer me unconditional love. I am sorry for my stingy love in the past but I have a big heart and you live there now. I am sorry I was not able to make your wedding but you can be sure I will be at your silver wedding anniversary!
That macaroni and cheese really was quite amazing you know . . . . . . thank you for being patient with me. I love you.
Thursday, October 13, 2005
The State of Alaska funded the work to the tune of a half million dollars to promote our wild salmon. The paint should last four or five years - you can see more pictures here.
Monday, October 10, 2005
Back In Alaska
I stayed busy enough that even though I ate way too much (four lobsters, six cream horns, mass quantities of lasagna, steak, a six course shore dinner on the coast, an epic macaroni and cheese beyond compare, and a few adult beverages) I managed to only gain a pound while I was gone - I consider that a victory. I'll post more once I get back in the swing of things and get settled. I definitely missed my wife and family back in Alaska so this shot taken in the airport before my flight home is bittersweet - I'm so lucky to have such great family to visit in Maine, and such a wonderful family to come home to in Alaska! Now I have to get back on the exercise bike this week and lose that pound and more . . . . .