Published: August 9th 2012July 31st 2012
I am combining Days 8 and 9 because of very low activity. Day 8 started with the muscle weakness that tells me I’m pushing it so I was very glad I had not signed up for that guided nine mile hike!! I still have to think I’ll be able to build up more stamina in spite of this possibly being an indication it can’t happen. I’ll go forward with confidence it can until truly proven otherwise. Anyway, I never left the cabin. I used the rest filled time to get a lot done in reviewing travel routes and times for the trip overall which I had not gotten to before leaving home. It was a good thing too because I would have been short for time allowance by a couple of hours on some of the travels. So I had a very quiet day eight and plenty of catch-up time from the rush of having finished working, packing up, and a great but high activity week one of this trip. It felt really good to turn it down a bunch of notches and just “be” which was one of the things I wanted to do and feel on this trip as
well. In fact, it was so good that I did the same for most of Day 9 too. I even took a nap Day 9 (Tuesday, 7/31)!! How cool is that for me to have actually taken the time to do so! I had already decided to stay an extra day here in McCarthy so I could do the raft trip instead of leaving tomorrow so this second very free day was good in a number of ways.
The sun displayed itself brightly by midafternoon and feeling physically recharged, I headed out to a restaurant both locals and non-locals had told me I needed to get to – “The Potato.” You will see photos on the way that I shared here of the Currant Cabins where I am staying since there is sunshine now. Also included some sun shined pictures of the drive and then walks on the way to the infamous footbridge and into McCarthy. I had decided to forego the shuttle given the rest I had gotten and the absolutely gorgeous evening. Great decision as the whole adventure was simply an ideal closing to the two day hiatus.
The McCarthy Museum was still open as I
walked to The Potato so I stopped in. I continue to be amazed at the rich history of this veiled two-town area. There are so many who travel to Alaska that will never get to this unique setting. Flat tire and all I feel special to be here. Some of the museum’s historical facts are in the pictures because it is simply easier to share the information displayed rather than recreate. It is a little scary when I recognize the typewriter as one similar to what my mom had and similar to the one with which I learned to type (manual carriage return, ribbon, etc.). Scary because it provides that glaring reality that some of the things from my earlier life are now “historical” and kids today would look at it thinking how unbelievable it is we would have actually used something so antiquated! My grandkids are probably looking to their parents as they read this to be told what a carriage return or typewriter ribbon actually is! Come to think of it, they might even be asking what a typewriter is…Ouch!
I arrive at “The Potato” and it is incredibly unique with the hut-like quick serve atmosphere. I
almost expect some old, crabby, gizzard to show his face through the window looking to scare any youngsters away. Instead I am greeted by a friendly, helpful person who assists me in selecting something terribly unhealthy though sounding incredibly delicious. I indulge since I’ve eaten quite healthy the last couple of days. While listening to some of the locals discuss town happenings, I help a little girl put together a potato head – so many to choose from and so many little attachments. Too fun! I get to work to finish a day’s blog so I can post since there is Internet service available even in this seemingly remote location. I’m already behind and getting more behind by the day. The food turns out to be just as good or better than it sounded and I relish every bite including every single one of those curly potato fries cooked to perfection.
The walk back was quite serene and uneventful. There are others walking to cars or just on a quiet stroll themselves. Nods and/or greetings are exchanged in a manner like we are all connected, united by what surrounds us and needing no words to acknowledge it – simply
Kennicott Glacier with sun streaks
One could sit here and just take pictures every 15 minutes or so and have a different picture altogether!
silent recognition of what we share in these moments.
The evening becomes night time in spite of continued daylight and I know I need to turn in. However I go to close the blinds in my bedroom and notice the full moon gleaming through the trees. I am summoned by it to go back outside. In spite of there still being daylight, the moon’s brilliance is a spectacle in the sky. How many people in times gone by before maps, roads, or GPS were folks actually guided by this marvel? How welcome a sight this must be even now in Alaska in the darker days of winter? And that begs the question if the full moon shows bright all during the darkness of winter or only for the hours of actual night time? It is a question for another day because difficult as it is to do, definitely necessary to hit the sack because tomorrow is the raft trip. Pleasant dreams to you from McCarthy Alaska J
There are more photos below