Triumphant Return Blog!

I suppose it’s true that bad habits are hard to break and good habits are hard to keep, so when I missed a week, it was far too easy to keep missing weeks, and here we are, about a month later without an update. This is how blogs die.

Anyway, this week is special: one year ago yesterday, I was getting on a plane to Anchorage without a return ticket. It was a huge gamble, and while I’m not sure it has paid off yet, we’re getting there. Katrina’s where she wanted to be, job-wise, and I’m still working at GameStop, despite my fears that my intense new boss was going to fire me at the first sign of a slip-up. To be fully candid, I’m beginning to think I want out of the retail business; between a video game store and a liquor store, it seems like all I do is sell vices, and there are some terribly sad regular customers at both stores who clearly should be spending money on other things, like clothing and hygiene.

The weather has been… unseasonably warm for a couple of weeks. I hesitate to say “hot” because as a former resident of Northern California, this is not hot. This is upper seventies, lower eighties, but you’d think the pavement was melting the way the locals are whining and complaining. And buying lots of beer. And showing up to buy beer with their shirts entirely unbuttoned and paunches hanging out like this is Miami or something. It gives me a sick bit of satisfaction, knowing that now that winter is over, the shoe is on the other foot. Alaskan weather can stay like this forever as far as I’m concerned. ‘Course, then it wouldn’t be Alaska, it would be Santa Barbara.

The downside of all this lovely weather is the insects. Alaska is known for its mosquitoes, and this is the time of year they make their presence known. They’re big, too, sometimes almost an inch across, but slow and dumb, so you just have to stay alert. We’ve also been having problems with bumblebees, of all things, as they keep getting in the house. There must be a nest or something underneath or nearby, and we just have to keep shooing them out. At the moment the problem is ordinary houseflies, which seem to get in just to buzz loudly against the windows.

My parents came up to visit a few weeks ago, and the meeting of the (future) in-laws finally happened. I have to admit, I was expecting a bit more fireworks, since I had built up in my head that our parents are practically polar opposites. But my folks did a good job of taking all the weirdness in stride, better than I did when I first got here. They even got along with Anna, which was a challenge for me at first, though to her credit, at that time she was unemployed and therefore cranky, and having this deadbeat boyfriend of her sister’s sharing the living space probably didn’t help. Here she is lifting Vitus, one of her favorite pranks to pull on that dog.

This was a fairly low-impact trip, as they were only here for about a week, and just wanted to get a lay of the land, rather than run all over the place fishing and clamming and hiking and doing all those Alaskan summer things. We did some fun things, though, when I wasn’t working, like see the fine Anchorage Museum and the Alaska Zoo.

My parents seemed to fully enjoy themselves, and we’re obviously happy to see me again, though they were clearly underwhelmed by our current living conditions, which I admit I’m not particularly proud of, either. But it’s what we have. Their next visit (of course we’re planning a “next visit”!) should be more interesting, as they have expressed interest in fishing and seeing more of the sights, which Deb would be only too happy to oblige.

I’m going to do my best to keep up the blog, though Tuesdays may be the publishing day now that my schedule leaves me rather busy on Mondays. We’ll see where it goes from here.


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