It was 50 years ago for me and still is today.
This is my first time living in the Southeast; my last three periods of Alaska habitation having occurred in or around Fairbanks, the heart of the interior.
And the difference between the Interior (of Alaska) and the Southeast is pretty much night and day.
The intense cold of winter in the Interior has a finality to it that is omniscient yet can be fatal. I’ve been afraid at various times in the Interior. In the Southeast, it’s a sea life, certainly dangerous in its own way, but then I’m not afraid of the sea. At least not in a well-found boat, like my Kadey Krogen.
The people are somewhat similar, nice, helpful, but then and now, it just seems Southeast people are even nicer, friendlier and even a bit smarter.
Dauntless, Larry, my oldest Alaska friend of 46 years and a stalwart crew mate on Dauntless these last 5 years, and I arrived in Ketchikan almost two months ago. It’s been a busy two months!
Too busy to go into detail here and now, but as the winter sets in and I have time to take a breath, I’ll fill in the details.
Everything has gone to plan, even our cute, little wedding in Tenakee Hot Springs. I have hours and hours of video of the Inside Passage, Southeast Alaska from Ketchikan to Juneau and of course, Tee and Thien.
The three of us have started the next chapter of our lives in Wrangell. A great little community of about 2500 people. I felt a lot of pressure to decide on the right locality and school for Tee and Thien. While I knew we would be somewhere in the southeast, I didn’t want to settle on the exact location until we had been in the harbor and visited the school. Thien has his last two years of high school to complete.
I’m pleased to say that Wrangell High School could not be better, with a great staff and leadership. That’s not as easy to find as one would think considering all the money we throw at education.
Tee is getting used to living on a boat, having to manage our electrical load and crappy internet access. Thankfully, she is not as terrified as she first was whenever we encountered any waves greater than one foot. We’re up to about two feet now.
On the other hand, both Tee and Thien are fishing fanatics. We certainly are eating a lot of fish the locals would only use for bait. And they LOVE crab, so every once in a while, Tee does see glimmer of her dream life in America. Though I’ll admit that whenever “the dream” is mentioned, I sense a hint of sarcasm, that would make a New Yorker proud.
Maybe more than a hint, as she does her imitation of being on the toilet as the boat is rolling back and fourth!