Wilder by Far

A look at life with the Wilder family. Updated most weekends and some vacation days. You can contact me at movingnorth@gmail.com..

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Location: United States

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

"If the Pirates of the Caribbean breaks down, the pirates don't eat the tourists." - Jeff Goldblum, Jurassic Park

You can see the majesty of the Alaska Range spread out below. I took this shot from the International Space Station on their "Blogger Festival" weekend party. Man, those Russians can party. You can click on it for most wonderful larger mountainy goodness (as with all of the pictures on the site).

Soon, perhaps in a week or so, the snow in my front yard will be gone. It’s been hanging on longer than Britney Spears has, so, it’s time for both of them to go. As the snow melts, it makes you feel a bit guilty. I find things under it that I had last seen seven months ago, like our Halloween Jack o’ lantern. Seriously. I found ole’ Jack peeking out from under the snow on Sunday, a bit the worse for wear (also like Britney). Here is a picture of Jack (or is it Britney?) in better days.

As the snow melts, it gets uglier as it goes down. Every gum wrapper inadvertently dropped from the Wildermobile, every leaf, every bit of sawdust, every bit of random detritus is now on top of the melting snow. Where there isn’t melting snow, there’s a mash of rocky mud. As this frozen-muddy concoction (I apologize if that gives Starbucks® ideas) dries, The Boy will be introduced to the slave labor known as “policing” the yard. The major difference is that he’ll be rewarded with Snacky-Cakes upon completion, rather than a bowl of gruel. Plus, we give him TV privileges 4 minutes a day, and allow him to stop sewing soccer balls (footballs to all you metric lovers) when it gets dark out. Did I mention that we’re up to 19 or so hours of daylight?

The bright side of all this heat is that now we’re down to just one little fire at night, which keeps the house temperature up all day. This is better than the continuous fire that we had all winter long, with periodic fire outages, ash removals, and chimney cleanings on “warm’ (0ºF) days. Today was 110ºF warmer than the low temperature in winter, which, when put that way, makes living in Fairbanks seem absolutely insane. I mean, why would we want to live in a place that gets as hot as 55ºF?

The tourists have yet to show up, either by ship or by RV. They’re coming. One thing you might not expect is that large numbers of people in Alaska also an RV so they can motor across the state and enjoy all 23 miles of paved roads. When the real tourists arrive, they will be welcomed by a whole host of people ready to feed them, show them a gold mine, take them on a riverboat cruise, and launder their touristy, sea-foam green, short-sleeve jumpsuits.

More mountains. I know they look all calm, and they're like, "Hey, we're not doing anything," but did you ever think of how they got there? Volcanos. Earthquakes. Capsized ships. Don't forget the granddaddy of 'em all - Plate Tectonics. I think we should band together and STOP PLATE TECTONICS NOW! You know, for the children, before it changes, ummm, stuff. Also because I'm pretty sure SUV's caused it.

Fairbanks is a nice place to go if you’re a tourist. Safe. No grizzly bears, except the ones that have visited a taxidermist. If you’re looking for a bit of free tourist advice, avoid the pointy ends of the grizzly. That tends to get you in the news, and not in the “Rocky J. Tourist just won the lottery” way, but in the “Rocky J. Tourist now officially permanently barred from future contributions to the gene pool.”

But it’s not time for tourists yet. We still have the place (give or take a moose) to ourselves. So, we’ll get the place all straightened out and ready for tourists to marvel at the beauty of Fairbanks in summertime. It all starts with The Boy.

We need to set the right mix of terror and Snacky-Cakes so that he performs the maximum amount of trash collection to make the place nice for tourists. The Mrs. is especially good at this one, and is steeped deeply in the dark side of the Force™. While she hasn’t used her Force™ lightning on me to make me pick up my dirty socks, I bet she could.

Afraid The Boy will be, if yard is picked up not, yes?


Blogger Duck Hunter said...

Some day we're taking a cruise, and we are headed straight for Alaska. I'll tell you when that time comes so you can do a bit of extra polishing.

4:15 AM  
Blogger John said...

Consider it done! I'll have him work his skinny little fingers to the bone for you!

9:47 AM  
Blogger dogsled_stacie said...

The tourists are coming! The tourists are coming!!! Saw the very first RV heading your way about 2 weeks ago. But maybe they're making a stop in Anchorage first?

At any rate, get ready...

7:05 PM  
Blogger Woofwoof said...

Maybe the tourists won't come this year. Gas costs too much. Unless they give it out free up in Alaska. Just open the spigot and it pours out.

8:23 AM  
Blogger John said...

Yup. Saw one yesterday. Wouldn't mistake 'em for Alaskans. Too tan.

Nope. Nothing can stop them - nothing.

7:27 PM  

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