Amber showed us around Anchorage our first day: the kids’ school in a sloped valley, where moose sometimes loiter by the front door; the ski jump school where Titus takes lessons and earned his rank as the 9th in the nation in his ski jump category; Luke’s office near the park where they ice skate when the pond freezes over.
We caught a glimpse of Denali, “the high one,” the day before Obama officially renamed it. Luke says the only people who called in Mt McKinley were people who don’t live in Alaska anyway, so it was kind of a non-issue. I learned that, at 18,000 ft base-to-summit, the 20,000+ ft Denali is actually the world’s largest mountain!
We stopped at Summit Spice and Tea company, where we had reindeer quiche and bourbon tea. I bought Alyeska Spice loose leaf tea. Alyeska is an Aleut word that means “great land” and comes from the same root word they got Alaska from. So please look forward to a tea party when we get home.
We had salmon Luke and Amber caught themselves this summer. Chris and I also tried BEAR—one of two Luke shot this year. For dinner, Amber made Rockfish Vera Cruz from the 80-year-old rockfish they caught two weeks ago (pictured below). Luke said you can tell how old it is by the size.
The cutest thing is the cousins all together. They chased each other and the kittens, played at the park, watched DinoTrux and ate chicken nuggets in dinosaur shapes.
And that was just our first day. I love love love that Alaska is SO ALASKA. It’s like the rest of America: you know, Target, Costco, nice houses, clean water, freedom. But…it isn’t like the rest of America. Clearly.