Wednesday, September 26, 2012

A Series of Unimportant Rambles & Photographs

Tonight ought to be celebratory. You see, tonight is the last night where I could have made attempts.

Attempts for.. closure.

I'm learning to find closure on my own.
And it hasn't worked... yet.

Want to do a "see-how-far-I-can-walk-in-a-day" day in Seattle on 10/11/12. Curious what my body is capable of.


Music can be the most vicious of triggers.. and the sweetest.

I was safely working in a client's home when I heard a very specific series of notes ring out on a melodica down the street.
Stomach ache.
Two hours.

A fleet of 20+ Airstream trailers found their way to Haines for a weekend.
I was in a chipper mood the other day and I managed to run into two men named Mark who managed to tell me that they always saw me smiling and that I ought to keep smiling. One offered to take me on a boat ride.


When folks comment on my letter writing habits in public, I like to offer them a postcard and stamp to send to someone they care about. Then, they best write that postcard right then and there.


My client asked me about my Grandma. I told her and ended up crying.

Haines in the clouds. Then, I bike just five minutes away to see what it was I was standing under...
Above picture was taken in the midst of town.

I told the same client as mentioned above that I was leaving for three weeks. As I left, she started crying. I waited outside the door for 5 minute to see if she got better - she wailed all the louder. 


[Frequently] I feel like, in Alaska, I'm certainly not worth getting to know.
I'm not always fond of who I've been here.
But this is just a season (well, it's been three, technically).

I like old ladies.


I want to learn some carpentry and how to be a blacksmith.


You can't hide from the weather when you're on a bike.

Ally & Kat of Louisianna.
A day out on the water with a client.
Moose-steak sandwiches.

Some people bring out the worst in you.
My hope is to be able to be the sort of person that can bring out the best.

Some of my favourite summer-help from China & Kazakhstan.

I was reading a blog where the author seemed to paint her life as perfect (almost nauseating).
Dear People Who Read This,

My life is not perfect. I'm still figuring things out. If it was perfect, I think I'd get bored.

Please give all the advice you've got. I'll listen.



I think Byrne may have the finest library in Haines - he certainly serves the finest tea.
I've been rediscovering the bliss of reading. It takes up my time and tickles me a bit.

She shares her wisdom and experiences with me --- and, goodness, I'm just grateful for her.


So many things I ought not say so I don't so they bounce around in my brain on repeat.
Anastasia, letters, and music at the Mountain View Motel.
I like Amish postcards.
One day's worth of letters.
Birthday morning - letter reading session. Feeling the love.
Got 15 pieces of mail yesterday.
Got 14 last Wednesday.
10 last Tuesday.

Writing back one letter at a time, day by day.

Joy, of New York, was in Haines for a few days and I managed to run into her everywhere. She always made me smile and I enjoyed her company at... the pool, Chilkoot Lake, Tlingit Park, Mountain Market, at the library, and on the street.

Just want to dance.

This family has been so encourageing and amazingly good to me. I'm grateful for them -- they always put me in good spirits and bless me abundantly.
Back in June when I was in that weird-not-me-state I remember coming up with a plan. It was to cut off a certain someone and erase them from my life entirely, which I conceived as doable. That person said I couldn't do that. Now, three months later, I realized that that was exactly what I should've done.

When, after anything, all someone has to say is, "I didn't do anything wrong," putting 22-gallons of blame on your shoulders, it's a good sign to run.

Instead, I did a temporary cut-off, and then remembering what they said I sprang back, got hurt, ran away, came back -- making me the weak one and putting them in the position of power, calling all the shots.

Over three months later and my brain still wants all the pieces to come together.
I should have ran away and stayed away in the first place. 


I think think I could survive on beans, rice/quinoa, sweet potatoes, carrots, and kale.

Our Season Is Over

The last cruise-ship of the season docked in at Haines on my birthday, the 19th.
And so ends the tourism season.

The cruise-ship doubled our population each Wednesday.

Each Wednesday the town felt significantly different as bumbling tourists murmled around Main Street and clogged up the library trying to Skype - polluting the silence with their inconsiderat chatter.

Goodness, it sounds like I abhor them. No. I don't. I rather enjoyed the tourists --- 'cept when they were loud in the library.

Yesterday, the last cruise-ship pulled into Skagway, the next town up the passage and another source of our tourists. The tourists who ended up in Skagway could hop the fast-ferry to see Haines, an entirely different experience. Skagway is more touristy. Haines is legit.

Skagway might have some four cruise-ships per day - that's some 4,000+ tourists in a town of, get this, 920. I guess they got some 900,000 tourists last season. The not-so-fantastic thing is that most of the town is owned by the cruise-ship industry, not the locals. Apparently there are a lot of jewelry shops...

Haines has kept this from happening. We only let in one cruise-ship a week.

I guess we'll still have tourists coming in, though, in October and November when a couple thousand bald eagles will be taking over the borough. I'm stoked. We got ourselves the largest bald eagle population in the world.

Yesterday was also the end of the fishing season. No more halibut and salmon to be caught, I guess.

And those are pretty much the two largest industries in Haines - tourism and fishing.

Now this dear little town can rest, breath, relax, and take on the incoming chills.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Work Hours in September

Yesterday, had one of those "and they pay me to do this?" moments as me, a client, and another provider I was training enjoyed a picnic out at Mosquito Lake.

This is what my work hours look like right now.

Over five days time, I am working 83.5 hours.
Over six days? 97.5

Last week was 76 hours - I started off with 63 assigned hours.
Week before, 74.

Got to do 33 hours of working straight without a break in there right before.

It seems a bit hectic, yes, but I love my job (love my clients) and working is what I'm in Haines to do.
In this economy, I'm grateful to even have a job.

Andrew and Tyler weren't lying when they said I could make money in Haines.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

The Big Two-Two

View from the Ripinsky Race Trail - 3,563 feet lil' skitter.
Guess who's survived 22 years on this planet? This kid.

Here's a story to celebrate with.

Yesterday I was at the Mountain Market with a client and I got into a conversation with a lovely lady. Suddenly, mid-conversation, she looked at me and said, "Why aren't you in school?"

"Umm... school? I'm not in school."
"Wait. You're not?"

I furrowed my eyebrows and asked, "Exactly how old do you think I am?"
She earnestly replied, "Well, 14..."
"Not quite," was my reply.

Nope. I'm not 14.
But, at least she was only 8 years off (well, 7 years as of yesterday - 8 today!).

Anyways, 22 years old and still learning and growing. Far from perfect but filled with a few ounces of ambition.

What do I think this year might bring me? Trips around the States to thoroughly experience it beyond the West coast, the Ukraine, Scotland, Switzerland, the Netherlands. Maybe some dancing. Maybe some cello'in.

Update: I'm still in Haines. Still love it. To follow up last week's 74 hours of work, doing 72 this week. I get to do 33 hours of straight work with only one 1-hour break starting tomorrow at 10:30 AM. Hoorah!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Pie Walk

It's easy to fill a postcard with an assortment of half-baked notions, observations, and ideas like,

"Hey, Switzerland is rad. Wish you were here. The mountains are pretty. Stop eating so much corn. Love, Bobby Joe."

But, sometimes, I like to delve a bit more into what's up. A summery of the day sometimes works (although still vague). The other day, I wrote a postcard on pie because pie is what came to mind. I wanted to know their favourite kind of pie (I just learned that Beth's is huckleberry peach - that sounds mighty fine!). I wrote and wrote and wrote on about pie.

I forget how it came about, but I ended up at the Summer Inn with Hannah, the innkeeper and one of my favourite Haines-mates, and Lori, who I was just meeting for the first time then.

Lori made crab cakes from freshly caught crab. Oh man... they were delicious. So good.

Then, she and Hannah mentioned pies (mind blown?)! Magical pies! Lori had made pies - wild blueberry pies and cherries, both freshly picked. Notice the trend here? Fresh. Fresh. Fresh.

But, get that!, she made pie! I had just been writing about pie just that morning and then, voila, pie on the table.

We couldn't just eat the pie, though. No sir.
I wanted a pie walk.
A pie hike?

Wander around pie with a town.

And we did.

If you saw a pie-crew meandering Haines last Thursday, I think you could pretty freely assume it was us. Did you see what I just had there? Three words in a row with double letters in them. This last sentence had two of those words. That last sentence had no double letters.

We decided to take the pies to Cars Cove out on Mud Bay Road. We trompled up Mud Bay Road and began our decent down when we came across a path, well, a clearing in the trees that had something of a trail marked into it. There was hesitation in taking it but Lori took the first step and we quickly followed.

We came to a clearing and several paths were offered. A grassy path, a alder/ash/somethingtree lined path, or a path up to a washing machine.

Surrounded by trees and isolated from familiar landmarks, we became disoriented and started to guess where we would end up.

Long story short (this got too long and I want to just post it now or it will never go up) we ended up at an ol' abandoned-of-sorts logging mill with water. The pie was delectable after over an hour of meandering. Voila!

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