Wildlife Sightings Within Days of Moving to Alaska

Within days of moving to Alaska (I moved straight from the lower 48 out to Naknek in the middle of winter) I saw a ptarmigan. I came in the house and said, “I just saw a big fat white bird outside. What is it?”
Elijah, the son of the family I was staying with didn’t say anything, just ran for his jacket and rifle and ran outside. He fired off a couple of shots, but wasn’t lucky that time.

There was a guy out there who took photographs everyday and posted one of those shots on a website he had. My favorite had Winter Ptarmigan in the foreground and a herd of migrating Caribou in the background. Pretty Alaska-y. I was standing next to him for that shot.

The Gleason Connection

My flight instructor/boyfriend Mike was second cousin to Jackie Gleason. Mike’s mom was a Gleason and the sweetest, funniest lady I ever knew. The last time I saw her she was going into dementia.

Mike was always, always, always flying trying to build hours to get to the airlines. So, his big Catholic family included me in a lot of family get togethers. She taught me to love a rare steak. I was sitting with them at their family cabin waiting, as usual for Mike to appear and I planned on eating with him. His mom, with a twinkle in her eye just kept feeding me steak.

Two degrees of separation from Jackie Gleason.

The Allman Brothers

I love the Allman Brothers. They performed at the Target Center in Minneapolis once. I don’t know why, but when people are toking up at a concert, I always indulge. So, someone in front of us was smoking and I demanded a hit and got stoned out of my mind.

My youngest brother and several other friends were all together at this concert. When they started to play some of their “new stuff”. I stood up and here my brother loves to mock me, he holds his hands in the shouting formation on either side of the mouth, bends slightly at the waist and then sways back and forth yelling, “bewwwwwwwwwwwwww”. I booed Greg Allman while stoned. This is why I can’t have nice things. My brother was not pleased.

February 27, 2015-Twelfth Anniversary of Mister Rogers Passing

This is a day for tears. No more Dennis Miller Radio Show, Greg Gutfeld suddenly leaving Redeye, Leonard Nimoy’s passing. I was an adult (sort of) when I first became aware of Mister Rogers and always found him to be very comforting.

The worst job I ever had was as a receptionist/secretary in a law firm. It was a darkened room with only lighting above my desk (the firm was so mixed, we had criminal defense lawyers, labor law lawyers, one guy just defended prostitutes, another was a sports agent) so they felt it was best to keep the room dim and the walls were grey and they never got around to even hanging any art in there. It was a boring job. I was the sports agent’s main secretary and did overflow work for all of the other secretaries plus answered 200+ calls a day. I hated that job. If there was nothing to do, I wasn’t allowed to read or amuse myself in anyway.

My next door neighbor was a stay at home mom and when the show came on in the afternoon, she’d call the office, wait for me to answer and then would not say anything but hold the phone up to her television’s speaker while Mister Rogers sang his theme song. I was truly saddened when he passed and still miss him.

Noisy Vacuums

All time favorite clients. I always called them Mr. and Mrs. Jester. One favorite memory I have of them: Mrs. Jester was gone one day and I had a team of three that day. Toward the end, there were two vacuums going. I was in the kitchen doing something and Mr. Jester walked in with his coat and hat on and said, “I’m getting out of the vale of tears.” hahaha. He was so funny. If he’s still alive, which wouldn’t surprise me, he’d be close to 95-100 by now. They moved to No. Cal. in their later years.

Scottie my terrier/poodle mix dog

untitledScottie went with me everywhere. I had a convertible and I had a bowls of water and food for him on the floor of the passenger side, up front.

One day at a red light I was zoning out and I happened to look in my rear view mirror, Scottie was all the way in the back on the boot, panting and smiling at the people in the car behind us. Their heads were thrown back, they were laughing so hard. I always kept him on 6′ leather leash that was looped over the gear shift.

Wish I had a photograph of that.  Here’s a photograph of the breed I found on the internet. Very smart, happy dogs.

Morning Glories

imagesOn the day I got married, I planted a pack of deep purple morning glories in the back of a four-plex I lived in, in St. Paul, MN. In a few weeks they were climbing up to the railing of my porch on the strings I had nailed up for them. I went upstairs and asked the neighbors if they minded if I ran the string up to them. They said it was ok.

By August those morning glories had grown to two stories high and started growing back down. The sun had changed enough that they didn’t close during the day. So, that one time and one time only, There was a massive, two story curtain of deep purple morning glories growing, facing an alley in St.Paul. Alley users WERE impressed. No photograph, just the memory