8.15.2007

Alaskasized

When someone who has known you since you were a child meets your friends for the first time, what can you expect? They will join forces and make fun of you (in both the past and present tense), for sure, but some things you cannot quite anticipate. For instance:
  • Creekside Emergency Surgery: During a fishing trip, Lea got a hook caught in her leg. Dr. Meghan was with us, but because of a broken wrist, she could only provide directions as I tried to remove it. When Lea stopped trusting me, she tried to do it herself. It quickly became clear that additional supplies were needed. Dr. Meghan and Hank eventually returned with painkillers and a pair of scissors. I assumed the role of anesthesiologist, plying Lea with glass after glass of wine, as Dr. Meghan, broken wrist and all, got down to business and cut out the hook. Lea was very brave. There is video of the procedure, but it's not uploaded yet. In the meantime, here are some pictures:
Lea trying to remove the hook

close-up

anesthesia

surgery

the offending hook
  • Rage Therapy: Hank caught a salmon. Without a rock handy, I bludgeoned it to death with an empty wine bottle. I enjoyed it a little too much. There was blood smeared all over the label. It was cool.

My cousin Jody is visiting from Miami. It had been about two years since we last saw each other. We always have a lot of fun together, and this week has been no different. In between Jody and my friends ganging up to pick on me, performing surgery on the side of a creek, and Jody witnessing me beat a salmon to death, we have squeezed in some other stuff:
  • Wildlife Viewing: We have run into a moose, a beaver, lots of salmon, an otter, eagles, and (possibly) a whale.
  • Attack of the Killer Bees: I sort of wandered into a bee hive and got stung somewhere between two and six times (depending on who is counting) on my head. As soon as the bees showed up, Jody dropped everything and ran. She's allergic, which is a good excuse, but she left me for dead. Thanks.
  • Homer: A quick four-hour jaunt to Homer made me wonder why I never made it down there before. I've had plans to go two or three times in the past, but they always fell through. I'm glad I finally went. The views are stunning--the turquoise water of the bay, mountains, volcanoes, glaciers. It was a fun trip, the highlight being an afternoon spent across Kachemak Bay in Halibut Cove. The boat we took over was ably captained by my friend Mera--lawyer in the Winter, skipper in the Summer; She's got quite a nice gig ironed out for herself. Halibut cove is a sleepy, quirky, small artist community. Jody provides a good play-by-play of the whole adventure on her blog, so I will just relay an exchange I had with Diana Tilliom, a painter who works mostly with octopus ink:
Diana: I'm surprised the art community hasn't embraced octopus ink more; I wish more artists would use it.
Me: Is it expensive?
Diana: Yes.
Me: Is it hard to get?
Diana: Yes.
Me: (Thinking, "That explains it.") Um...
Diana: But you don't even have to kill the octopus. You can remove the ink with a hypodermic needle.
Me: Do you catch them yourself?
Diana: Yes.
Me: Are they hard to catch?
Diana: Yes.
Me: Is it hard to extract the ink?
Diana: Yes.
Me: Um, well, maybe all of those reasons are why more people don't use it.
Diana: Yeah, and I'm kind of crazy.
Me: Well, you do live in Halibut Cove and paint with octopus ink...
Diana: (smiles and laughs) Yeah.
Homer Spit Rd.

Not a bad view from Michael's B&B.

Captain Mera

Mera let Jody drive the boat

Halibut Cove's answer to the Painted Ladies

Homer, looking east

In addition to the aforementioned Homer post, Jody is chronicling all of her Alaska adventure on her blog. So far, there is just one other Alaska entry, but I am sure she will have a lot more to write about after next weekend's trip out to Nate's lodge near Denali with Nate, Marlo, The Chairman, Triple-P, Rob, T, Em, Hank, Viv, and three dogs.

2 comments:

Olive said...

hey, im curious to know why you would want to go in every fred meyer you pass....looking forward to seeing you in a month. im hoping you have some fun ideas and adventures planned for our jaunt to boston....or are you not really doing all these fun things in alaska, but you figure since you are so far away from civilization that if you make a bunch of shit up no-one will know....

joan sullivan said...

Tell Lea she is getting much too "hooked" on Alaska and must come bact to California immediately. Thanks to the surgeons but I would like to speak with the anesthesiologists about their unorthodox methodolgy. The backwoods of Alaska can attract some strange characters. Hugs from
Lea's Mom