In four days we leave on our long awaited trip to Alaska. Alaska has loomed large in my imagination since childhood. My mom graduated high school in Fairbanks and my dad went up the Alaska highway twice in the years following World War II. I remember dad reciting Robert Service and Jack London poetry to me as a child. He memorized many poems and would recite them from heart: Call of the Wild, the Yukon, stories of gold miners and shady women and descriptions of a cold and untamed land overflowing with beauty and danger. He filled the poems with drama and excitement and I would sit, eyes closed, mesmerized, imagining these wild places and crazy characters.
We won’t be climbing into an old car and traveling the Alaska highway which, back then, was no more than a cow path in many places. The Alaska highway was so rugged both the cars my dad used were totaled by the time they got back home. Nope, we will be flying in luxury directly to Anchorage, nonstop from Minneapolis. November is not exactly the ideal time to go to Alaska, but Kevin is going for work and the company is sending me along. He only works a couple days, leaving plenty of time for vacationing. I definitely want to see the northern lights so I’m praying for dramatic solar storms the next two weeks.
What else? Girdwood, Seward, Homer, Denali, Matanuska and Turnagain glacier, Flat Top, Chugach Park, Whittier, Whitehorse, Eureka? Will I really be able to touch a glacier?