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Discovering Wild Alaska: Moving to Alaska - Making the Last Frontier Home Sweet Home
Living In Alaska
Alaska grew on me quickly with it's first impressions of beauty and mystery. It really did. It stole my heart and refused to give it back. I didn't resist. Yet, I wasn't one of those people who always wanted to visit Alaska or like a friend of mine who was born in Georgia who said he wanted to live in Alaska since he was a little boy. He read about it in a book and was captured thereafter. That wasn't me at all.
The prospect of living in Alaska was even further from my mind. Honestly, it was my husband who asked me to request it. Request it, actually ask to be sent to Alaska I thought? You know I gave him quite a look. Hawaii was my first choice. Warm weather suited me just fine and I didn't care to feel like an icicle. I had no way of knowing that later in life I would be grateful to be a resident of the cool Last Frontier state of Alaska. That's right they gave me my second choice- Alaska. I probably rolled my eyes at the time. Especially since I got to precede my husband in travel until family housing was available.
Ah well, I deal with and adjust to new circumstances fairly quickly. Besides, being a creature of habit, I also can become attached to those things, people or places that seem to suit me. That's what happened with Alaska. My attitude changed. My heart softened towards this massive sometimes frozen, sometimes lush terrain. I was unprepared for the way a place like Alaska can effect your heart and emotions. It definitely changed mine. So you have fair warning if you decide to travel to Alaska.
Welcome To Alaska
After a tour of duty overseas and a couple of tours stateside, Alaska literally took my breath away. A naïve 20 something, I thought I had seen it all. Everywhere I turned was a different class of beauty. The Alaskan winter was my welcoming mat and it rendered me speechless. It was five below zero when I arrived in early October at a base outside Delta Junction. Evening came in the late afternoon. Looking back I remember that the base immediately reminded me of Hogan's Heroes. Yes, I know I'm dating myself. But It actually gave me comfort. I now had a part in my own drama, set in Alaska. Ready, Set, Action! Do they still say that?
Have You Ever Thought Of Moving To Alaska?
Believe it or not they weren't quite sure what to do with me. Yes, I had orders that directed me there and all. But for whatever reason they weren't expecting me. The Army had sent me all the way to this almost remote post in Alaska, but I wasn't expected. Okay my little Alaska adventure had already begun But they fed me, so things weren't altogether bad, just uncertain. And I was still having fun. I was given time off until they figured out where the glitch was in my paperwork and I didn't intend on wasting it.
Northern Life Adventure
So with my immediate future in the balances I was free to check out the place. I was still part of the military service and no-one was accusing me of being a spy...just yet. Like I said, they fed me. That was good. No use in me getting all paranoid.
In the back of my mind, the old Hogan's Heroes theme song went with me throughout the next three weeks. But in reality it was more like the TV show, Northern Exposure, because I was having too much fun. I was having a ball in the cold while they couldn't make up their mind what to do with me. I decided maybe I shouldn't unpack just yet.......and sure enough within days they drafted paperwork and sent me further north to Fairbanks.
I was on a northern life adventure of the unknown and some 30 years would go by without me even noticing. That only happens when you're really living. And by the way, Alaska still has at least a piece of my heart. Can't imagine living anywhere else.
© Barb Johnson