Friday, March 12, 2010

The Good Life

I don't know how to say this more plainly. This is simply one of the best places on earth to live. Deering, AK is small and teeters haphazardly on the far edge of the earth. It is as remote as you can imagine. It is silent except for the forlorn whine of the snow machines passing by and great gusts of snow laden wind. At this time of year the white horizon encircles every inch. The snow reflects the fresh rays of sun until it is the brightest day you can imagine. The bluff crests resolutely to the west. This is one HECK of a landscape!
It is hard to convince you lower 48ers that though amenities are sparse and some comforts are hard to come by that we find beauty and pleasure here. These are our small, but significant pleasures here in the Arctic.
Bush life has grown increasingly manageable. The bush has recently welcomed cell phones. Texting has become the new pink. It is so "in" it is hard to imagine what kids did before texting. We have satellite telephones. That is old news. They have been around for at least 30 years. We have high speed internet and on top of that we are able to have wireless internet in our home. Four classrooms in the school have Smart Boards even. We have hit the big time.We watch our Netflix and we seem to have weekly packages arriving from Amazon. We rock out to Pandora. I listen to podcasts of sermons from my sister's church.
We receive a box of organic produce delivered to our door each week. This has translated into some culinary delights coming from our kitchen. We really do eat like kings. Tonight for instance we had homemade pizza. I made the dough from scratch. The green pepper and mushroom came in our box from Full Circle Farm. We grabbed some pepperoni and mozzarella that we have frozen for just such an occasion. It was delectable and dare I say it, wholesome. Pizza Hut has nothing on us.
We do have amenities like a washer and a dryer. We also have a dish washer (her name isn't Jiorgia). We bought a 15 cu. ft. chest freezer in October to handle our abundance of fish. When Paul goes into Anchorage throughout the school year he comes home with plenty of frozen/refrigerated food. Unfortunately sour cream doesn't freeze well and neither do raw potatoes. It is a shame, really.
We live 40 feet from the school. That means if we get a hankerin' to see Dadoo we just pull on our parka and head on over. Paul's doesn't have to get up super early to weave through traffic just to get to work. When he wants a another cup of his special decaf coffee, he just trots on  home to get some.
We have flush toilets and running, indoor water. We have Gore-tex and goose down. We have polar fleece and synthetic long underwear. We have bunny boots and alpaca socks. Our house, during the day fluctuates from 68 to 72 degrees. We have companionship in each other and plenty of visitors. The kids come to play and we have a few folks here and there who come for a bit of tea and a good conversation.
We have laughter and humor. We have games and good old fashion fun. In describing our adventure to a a friend from the lower 48, she replied, "You guys are living the real life, all this down here is just fake." We couldn't agree more. When you strip the lower 48 of shopping centers, urban sprawl, traffic and crowds of anonymous faces you might find some of what we have got here...the GOOD life!!!!

Other news:
So I guess that March weather is sort of iffy so to speak. Tuesday was the beginning of a 3 day blizzard. The wind was enough to drive anyone quickly to his/her destination. The snow is as fine as desert sand. It whips through the air stinging your face. It is like a cooling micro-derm abrasion.

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