Sunday, October 24, 2010

it's time for bears to go to sleep...

since the bears are preparing to take a snooze and since i've been loading pictures onto my computer from my old cd's you get to take a stroll through seasons past. above is charley bear. that isn't actually his name, only his mother knows that for sure, but he was hanging out at mcneil river when i was out there for my week vacation. i thought he was a very beautiful bear. to get to mcneil river you have to sign up for the lottery before the end of february i believe. there are only 10 slots for each 4day period. we were the next to last group of the season and so less bears were about. i think everyone was chill and the bears were very used to the human factor. we got to wander a bit more than they do in the peak times. there were 4 in our group, none of us had met before we met up with the float plane in homer to head out to mcneil. it's a great trip and i totally recommend it to anyone who likes bear viewing.
photography in the anchorage area is a wee bit scarce right now. the world is brown and awaits winter. it's getting colder and it's not that i haven't taken any pictures but it's not really the greatest opportunities in the bowl here. my right rear tire has been leaking air and so i haven't wanted to explore much further than the local trails. hopefully, i can get my tires changed over this week and get that tire repaired at the same time. tuesday will be busy day as i get the tub refinished and get my little health check at work. the kayak pictures are from a kayaking week spent in harriman fjord. we had amazingly beautiful weather, we all got burns. the only down side to amazing weather in glacier country is that it tends to increase the melt and calvings can cause huge waves. i do love paddling around glaciers overall, the sound of the ice chunks hitting the boat as you ride through it. the sounds of the glaciers movements. we camped under a different glacier each night.
my friend scott likes to get out for an evening paddle, this was probably after 10pm so i say evening loosely....that is summer in alaska. i loved how the pictures above and below show the enormity of the glaciers. always good to see them with some perspective. so above is scott paddling and below you can see a little plane flying over the top of the glacier. on that hot summer day there were still two kayaks out on the water in all that ice when the entire face of the glacier below came crashing down. i was in one of those kayaks. the waves that came at us were quite large. i remember the kayak tipping back with the waves and the glacier and mountains dissappearing and just looking up at the blue skies. it was rather terrifying. we survived. i shook for like 2 hours once we were safely on land. lucky, our pick up was the next day. there was so much ice choking the fjord that the water taxi barely made it to us and then the calving started and his boat took some damage. he was able to get us all safely back to whittier.
just watched, "the stoning of moraya m". it's based on a true story about a woman who was stoned to death in iran. apparently, her husband wanted to be rid of her so he could marry a 14 year old. divorce was going to be too inconvienent so he comes up with a plot to set her up as an adulterer and get her stoned to death. he threatens some around him in order to make them be the witnesses to the non-crime and she is put to death. he turns her sons against her and her father and they, too, throw stones. it's horrible to think that such things still go on and that women in many nations have so little power over thier lives. it's also frightening how easily a group of people can be convinced to do such heinous things to someone who was one of them just days before. fear is a powerful weapon, people will do many things they would never imagine out of fear.
a few days previously i had watched another movie called, "crazy, sexy cancer". i didn't finish it. what had seemed like it would be interesting and clever really seemed more self indulgent. not to belittle her cancer but she had a very slow growing cancer and required no treatments, just monitering. seems even more self indulgent after seeing a movie like "the stoning of moraya m". this cancer patient seemed to quit life in order to document her cancer journey and all the whacko diets she was trying to slow the growth even more. her personality was just not one that i could relate to. probably if someone more relatable had done the same thing i would have really been interested. i wish her no ill and i do hope her cancer continues to just be something she has to moniter and that she lives a long life. the cancer word is never easy for anyone to take in, no matter what sort it is, or the outcome.
the guy sleeping below was our guide in mcneil, larry aumiller. i probably totally spelled that wrong, but he had been in charge of mcneil river sanctuary since it's begining. those bears knew him and he knew the bears. charely above took a nap at the same time that larry did. charley sat just 30 feet from us and slept. he had not one concern for us. we didn't know then, but we were one of larry's last groups. he put in his notice after that season. 30 years was enough and the politics were getting mixed up with his bears. he does still frequent his bears and can be seen out there from time to time, but it was cool to be there when he was there.
ended up working last night from about 9:30p til the morning. lena called. she's just so dang nice and i knew she wouldn't be calling if she didn't really need me. so a little overtime for me. hopefully the kid did okay today. was a little worried. several sick kids in there right now. it comes in waves in pediatrics.
today i just walked a big ol double loop in campbell airstrip. the dogs are definitley tired so a good walk. yesterday we did gasline to tank and back around.
above is charley stretching and waking up after his nice long nap.
i wouldn't want to die on a beautiful day,
with puffy clouds,
and blue skies,
the mountains coated with greens and wildflowers,
i'd rather be out walking,
i wouldn't wish to pass,
when the colours of fall,
are scattered about,
and the crisp fall air,
refreshens you,
i'd rather be outside,
enjoying the hews,
take me not on a fine winter day,
fresh snow,
crunches under my feet,
limbs bend from the weight,
let me instead trek through the woods,
in my boots and snowshoes,
and take me not when the leaves burst forth,
the birth of spring,
the trees are green,
brightness regains,
but then,
even on a cloudy day,
my heart longs to enjoy the greys,
god, let me linger,
upon this earth,
there's much to see,
please leave me be,
i'll walk and walk,
enjoy the gifts of each day,
lord take me when it's my time to leave,
but may i return from time to time,
to feast upon the beauty i see?
so there is a new poem. could use some work still, but you gotta start somewhere, right.
that is a bear butt above. bears have cute butts.
more shots of my favorite bear....
and a talented fisherman he is as well.
baked another 3 loaves of pumpkin bread. should be a nice treat for anyone who shows up for the monday walk. i had a few slices for dinner. that and some potatoe salad. i know i went all out. yesterday was a good meal, before it was interrupted by work. :-) i had tossed chicken into the crock with prego spaghetti sauce. it's quite easy and then i just make some spaghetti noodles to toss it all over. easy...and tasty!
i'll try to toss in some more kayak/bear pictures from before in the next weeks if i don't find anything more exciting out there....what is more exciting than charley though.

the big contest is tomorrow i guess. just to announce these last two pictures were not taken by me and i had nothing to do with either of these pumpkins. each year the hospital has a pumpkin decorating contest and i work in two units...above is the entry from the pediatric units and below is from the adult icu. funny how the two sort of epitomize the units they represent. i love the people in both units but have so noticed how different the personalities are that are drawn to each unit. those drawn to peds are just truely nice people overall, i mean kind, sweet folks. the icu draws a more crass sort of folk. i suspect i'm more of the adult icu personality, but i can be kind and sweet too. there are different reasons people go into nursing. i think often people are drawn to help people, which i do like that aspect of it, but others are more drawn to the technical and science end of it. i think we all end up with a little of both but there it is. i liked medicine, that it was ever changing and evolving. in the end i also like that i can make a huge impact on others lives in the smallest of ways. that impact will be remembered for years though my name and face will quickly be forgotten.

may the best pumpkins win!!

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