Tuesday, February 15, 2011

We have Landed!

The Fam has arrived in Alaska!

Here are my first impressions of our new home:

1) As much as I hyped it up to anybody and everybody who would listen, I was still taken aback by the temperature.  Yeah, Utah faced similar temps while we were there, but we always knew it would only last a week at most.  I suppose it's knowing this degree of cold is constant nine months out of the year that makes it feel much much colder.
Lessons learned: 

--Do not step out without a head covering.  Doing so is much akin to slurping a mega-sized Icee non-stop, without the yummy sweet taste in your mouth.

--When the wind blows towards you, inhale short breaths just enough to keep you oxygenated.  Breathing in deeply actually takes your breath away (do you think it's because the air temporarily freezes your lungs?).

2) Driving is gonna be a bitch! Utah has somewhat prepared me....somewhat...It seems the roadways are covered with ice.  Not the patches you find here or there in UT.  They are a constant presence, lining 80% of the roads...along the sides, in the middle, especially on curves. Lovely. Parking lots have a perpetual snow/ice pack across its entirety.  Pick a space, any space, just as long as you fit and make a somewhat straight line, it's a spot! And, you might even want to leave your car running while you run in (as I've seen quite a few). This is going to be the greatest challenge, I predict.  I am an Asian woman, people! Watch the eff out!

Lessons learned:

--If you can't see the lane markers, (two-three-four lanes? hmmm?) just drive on the left or right most lane and pray it's not a turning one.

--Just because you are on the brink of a panic attack behind the wheel on a highway does not mean everyone else will coddle you and ease up on the gas while driving by. These Alaskans are seasoned drivers and it just does not do any good to your current state of mind to get your feelings hurt when they shoot you a dirty look (or finger) when they whizz on by.

3) This place is beautiful. And we haven't even explored past ten miles around the base. Mountains to the east, the bay to the west (like UT) but with much more trees.  I can't even imagine the splendor this place holds outside of what I've seen.

Lesson learned:

--Change is always a constant. There will be numerous things that seem strange or difficult or annoying...and it's always good to acknowledge them. But overcoming these new challenges will be much easier when you keep a positive mind. So, smile, take in the beauty, and look forward to the gift of new memories this place holds.

With love, from Alaska,

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