I guess my camp in Sisualik could be my home away from home, but I sort of consider that my real HOME, so maybe Kotzebue is my home away from home! I don't know.
All I know is that every time I leave Sitka, I have a hard time. I've been all over for vacations. When I say, "ALL OVER" I really mean all over the world. I've been to most of the states in the US as well.
Sometimes when we're in Hawaii and its laid back and nice all the time, I say, "I could live here..." And that's the end of that. When I'm in Sitka though, I actually LOOK for jobs and houses and check out the schools.
Don't get me wrong. I love my job. I mean, really, REALLY love it. Here in Kotzebue. The only problem is that it's not Sitka! I feel like I have family there. That if my furnace quit working at 3am and my husband is out of town, I could call a few people and they'd come right over. I feel like if I had to leave in an emergency, that my kids and dogs would be taken care of. I've only ever (EVER) felt that way in Kotzebue, which is why I keep coming back.
Dean and Koy left to Sitka last week to participate and be there for the raising of the Totem Pole he carved in April. I wasn't going to make it, because we used a LOT of money to try to get Nugent fixed. But thankfully, on Thursday afternoon I got mileage credited to my Alaska Airlines Mileage account and was able to get a mileage ticket for Friday.
Friday proved to have a wonderful view the entire flight from Kotzebue to Anchorage. Including a perfect seat to the majestic Denali Peak.
I was in Anchorage for a few hours so I met up with a great friend and we went to eat sushi. Cause what else are a couple of Eskimo girls gonna eat? Raw Fish...doesn't get any more Eskimo than that. Well, it does...if the raw fish is also fermented... But that's another story!
I don't know if you guys know this...but I'm a fish girl. I'd eat fish three times a week if my family would too. I love fish. Any kind of fish. My favorite though, (OF COURSE) are Shiifish and Salmon. Not King Salmon though, its so fatty. I love the Chum we get up here. I love the Reds, and the Sockeyes. But really, any salmon will do for me.
Grilled Shiifish and Veggies with Rice!
I like Halibut too, but not as much as Shiifish. And sadly, even though I've been fishing quite a bit, I haven't caught ANY shiifish and I'm freaking out. FREAKING OUT.
Halibut Fish and Chips
So, I'm contemplating PAYING SOMEONE to go out and fish for me all day every day until I get at LEAST 25 fish. So I can gut, fillet and vac seal them for the rest of the year. Any takers?
Anyway, back to Sitka. I just love everything about it. The pier, the docks, the bears (wait, not the bears. I do NOT like that bears are around there!)
Except this guy, he's all boarded up at Fortress of the Bear, so I can get good photos of him!
I love the berries, the outdoors, the nice people who stop in the middle of the road to let you cross the street, etc. It's just such a community feeling there. Like here. But with trees and a McDonald's, and big boats.
I've always told Dean that we can move to Southeast, where he's from eventually. That once Kotzebue is wrung for all it's worth in terms of our family, that we could move. When the kids education is lowering, we can move. Actually, speaking of education, my 14 year old son decided that he'd like to try Mt. Edgecumbe Boarding School in Sitka next year. He has a career plan tracked out for himself and it does not include lower math and lower English in high school. He needs some more challenging classes and more "stuff" to do besides wrestling and cross country running. Even though it'll be tough and I'll miss my sonny boy, I always do what's best for my kids, and going to Edgecumbe is probably what's best for him right now.
Yup, he's that much taller than me... sigh.
A couple of fun things we did besides the Raising of the Pole, and Fortress of the Bear was walking around all the little shops Sitka has on the main drag. I couldn't believe they wanted $750 for a sealskin hat, but hey, if tourists will buy them, then what the heck!
Lots of Matroyshka dolls!
We walked and walked and walked. Every day we went to Highliner Coffee and had our customary White Chocolate Caramel Mocha on our way to Totem Park. We encountered plenty of tourists on cruise-ship days, and lots of wild flowers too.
I managed to forget a "hands-free" purse, you know one that you don't have to hold! So since Ashia found a sewing machine for $5 at a garage sale, I went to the fabric store and bought me some Moda fabric and fashioned myself the best hands-free purse yet! It has glasses holders and chapstick holders and a phone pocket. Not to mention the cute bow I had to make after realizing that the straps were too short to fit over my head and shoulder! I already have several orders for bags just like this one. Just don't ask for the pattern cause I don't have one. I just cut and sewed. It worked for me.
And lastly the worst thing about leaving Sitka was leaving friends. We stayed at one of my new BEST friends houses. I love it when I find a really truly good friend! And that's what I found with her.
Plus I really want to steal her dog. He is my husband in dog form. Snores, sleeps all over the place, and likes to chase animals. Ahh, Turk! I need a beagle.
So...don't be surprised if someday soon I decide to get up outta here and experience some trees. Cause you know, we don't have trees here.