Tuesday, August 4, 2009

kodiak to dutch harbor...8 false pass

so we've arrived at false pass. this town is located on unimak island and we have finally left the alaska peninsula behind. the name comes from the fact that the bering sea side of the strait is very shallow and decieving as it can't accomadate larger boats. the community is small and the cannery burned down years ago. fishing still keeps the place alive. i guess the close proximity to the mainland means they do get some bears as well.
what we heard about false pass was that a salmon bake may be there to welcome us. sure enough sandra got out the binoculars and spotted cooking going on in the building at the end of the dock. what i hadn't realized on these stops immediately was that as we ran to the villages to see the towns, the villagers ran to the boat to get some burgers and fries from the ferry's diner. who can blame them. a floating restuarant had arrived and it only comes once a month in the summertime. just thought it funny that we were running off for salmon and they running on for burgers. the salmon was quite tasty. it sold for $12/plate and included a tasty cole slaw and dry bread. no drinks available, but it was still a nice meal and i was happy to support the town. always happy to see signs of the capitalist system at work. there are less than 100 folks living here and just over half have actual indoor plumbing. still plenty of alaskans using honey buckets at night.

above and below are just a few pictures we took when we were getting ready to dock. i do recall one guy using our wake coming in to play on his skidu. i loved all the old boats on the beach. we also saw a rather large bear print, which i will post tomorrow perhaps.
there is sandra scoping out the salmon dinner which awaits us.

enjoyed a cd of pictures from my neice kacey's wedding. she married the day we arrived in dutch. i'd planned the trip so far in advance that i went ahead with the trip and missed the wedding. i have 24 neices and nephews...so it's not possible to attend all the weddings, especially now that i live so far away. fun to get pictures though. she looked stunning in her gown and looks like they all had fun. she and her sisters went out a night or two before, just the 4 of them, and stayed in a hotel for the night...fun to just be sisters i'm sure. i'm one of 7 kids and 5 were at the wedding. i've got to get started making more baby quilts as my neices and nephews are having babies now too. there are 4 babies on the way so my goal today was to see if i have any material that will work for any of the quilts or if i should go shopping. i've always made a baby quilt per family. i learned long ago that to be fair i really needed to make choices. being the youngest it always sucked when i watched all that the first few kids got or the first few grandkids....i knew this level of gift giving would never continue through all the kids that would be born. i couldn't possibly afford to send gifts to all the neices and nephews for each birthday and holiday. i did get birthday cards to everyone for years and have given a christmas gift to each kid each year til they get married are graduate college. mostly, despite my efforts i rarely even hear if a package arrived. it gets frustrating. seems silly really though since it's so easy to contact each other now a days. most of the kids are on facebook with me...how hard would it be to say....hey package arrived...thanks. so old lady of me, right. i know the siblings are initailly to blame for not instilling these manners into thier kids. i feel badly that i can't be more generous, but i think i've been a decent auntie. i've always wanted to be there if any of the kids needed someone to listen to and i think an auntie is a backup. just a support that is called upon if the need arises. the gifts i give in the end really are just a way to keep myself in thier lives...in case they need me. i know that. i love my neices and nephews and its really fun watching them grow and develope and become adults. fun to see how thier lives evolve. i may have had some influence on a few of them. i always hoped that i at least gave them an option. that as far as the church, they could leave it and go on to lead happy lives if they so chose. i didn't know that. when i left the church it was just a great unknown. i had no idea what would happen with my family.
the baby quilts are actually very easy to make and i love picking out material that i think the mom's to be would like. i know my quilts aren't fancy...but they are the gift i give from me.

here are the last few pictures i'll put in of cold bay. we got a nice tour and then returned to the boat...you can see it above down the long dock. below is in izembek. cloudy, but still lovely. loads of volcano's in the aleutians, but we didn't see the tops of much the week we were out.

this is lyle. our cabin was next to his and his daughter, cathie. they were super nice people. she lives in anchorage and is moving to juneau. she's lived all over alaska as a teacher, just fun folks. we met many nice people on the boat. loved this goofy picture of him at the signage in izembek. below is a sign for cold bay that didn't show up in yesterdays postings. no boat harbor yet from what i gather in my reading. this must house the phone that one calls from the pay phone at the other end of the dock.

yesterday was a bit of a lazy day though i did get one walk in and 40-something laps. i did another 40 today. more tiring since i just did those yesterday. it's hard to keep track of how many laps you do. not sure how real swimmers do that, nor do i understand how they know where they are in teh water. i'm always off center which gets stressful when i have to share a lane. no lane sharing today. they were doing water aerobics in half the pool and the 3 lanes around me emptied out eventually. i tried the nose plug, but not sure i was using that right. i may want to see about a lesson or two. haven't taken swimming lessons since the ymca before i was 10 years old. i know i used to swim lots, but not laps.
my friend kelly called this morning so we decided to meet up with the dogs for a nice walk. first i needed to walk rio and blossom so i could settle rio in at home. she is feeling pretty spunky though so it's hard to leave her behind...i'm sure it's best for her though really. she wanted to play with every dog we passed. i looked back on teh walk with kelly in a panic once before remembering that i hadn't brought rio. always a great time walking with kelly. she has a new car...a sweet looking volvo. she hates to spend money and i know she wanted to make her subaru last, but alas...it really was time. those old cars just start needing repairs so much that eventually it becomes less painful to just make a car payment on something that won't leave you stranded. the last thing you want in alaska is an undependable car. at least that is my opinion...that doesn't mean people dont' drive crap cars here too.

i took a nap this afternoon before i did my laps. rio decided she might want to climb up on the bed...i had to disuade her of this idea. she is just too big. while i was off doing laps...she got into the spare room and ate up the chocolates in there and chomped holes in the bag of raisins i had. i still haven't totally finished unpacking from my trip...teaches me, eh.
raining now.
well, i'm almost done blogging about my trip to dutch...should just be dutch harbor left to blog and share photo's of. i got the pictures back from costco and have started putting them into photo albums. i have lots of photo albums. my biggest fear is fire though so i really love that i can blog and put pictures here safely. the albums are more fun when you know the stories behind the pictures i think. cool that blogs are available so that one day others can glimpse into our lives if they desire. i prefer to have my blog read that my body dug up and examined by a future society. burn and scatter i say.

watched a netflix movie last night "how about you". actually pretty good. it's about some cantankerous old folks bitter and living in an assisted living home. they are such buggers that the poor woman running the home can't keep other old people in there. the woman must leave for a week or so to care for her mother and her young, rebellious sister is forced to take over during the christmas holiday. things run amok, but eventually the lot of them sort it all out. i have no idea the actual fate of my life eventually. so many variables. so many things can happen as we age. there are no guarantees. all you can do is attempt to be somewhat fit and see what the gene pool has in store. eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow you could end up drooling and in some old folks home, but i sure hope not. at least if you lose your mind you lose the ability to know you've lost your mind right along with it.


  1. apologies, yet again...posted another repeat picture from yesterday. oops. my memory has never worked right. good thing i'm writing stuff down now, lord knows what i'll recall in 20 more years.

  2. I know I was not always great about thank you notes/calls growing up. I always loved your Christmas presents & birthday cards though & the pictures you sent. For what it's worth, I try very hard as an adult to try and make up for childhood & adolescent non-thank yous. :)

  3. i was horrible as a child with thank you notes too. our parents never asked us to write them. it was my friend marcia who taught me. i think as you get older and work for the money that pays for such things, you realize the value and ultimately the sacrifices of others. being grateful is a gift...i hope i get better with being grateful with each passing year.
    shannon..your family was actually pretty good at the thank you notes. i think your mom was behind that.