Stay tuned (patiently) as we occasionally throw updates on here about what steps we're taking to get to our end goals, DIY tricks and life-hacks, child-rearing tactics (strategery), etc.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Testing the new email address...

I reset my phone to use my blogging email address to upload MMS and email directly to my blog. (I was using a separate address before.) I hope this works.

It appears I've figured out how to text directly to my blog... the shortcut of all shortcuts!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Sweet Home Alaska B-Dub...

...if you say that instead of Alabama, you're good to go. I'm thinking of parting ways with the beloved BattleWagon in favor of some tent-living/money-saving while the summer is still somewhat decent. In the past 48 hours, we've had 43 raning, and after the past few weeks of decent sunshine, I figure I better do this before Alaska gets the best of me.

"Gagging Order"

I heard a song by Radiohead tonight called "Gagging Order". I don't know if it's the 26 hours of rain we've had here, or a combination of other factors, but it just struck me as very deep, very sad, very melancholy, but at the same time, very beautiful, simple, and eloquent. I hope you can pull it up on YouTube or last.fm and give it a listen.

As I said, 26 hours of rain, and the forecast doesn't give any signs of sunlight for a while. These are the times when I miss Colorado the most, the times when it was amazing to walk outside and just let the warmth wash over you, as if the sun were taking you into its arms and holding you, protecting you, letting you know that you're loved.  The rain, while a beautiful antithesis to that, is not as calming in the same way.

Maybe it should be this way: the sun is the mother of nature and the rain is the father. The sun loves you, keeps you warm, makes you feel happy, encourages you to go out and play, always makes you feel like a kid at heart. The rain guards you, protects you, helps you to be stronger on your own, encourages you to grow in mind and spirit, and washes away your sins, forgiving them with each drop.

It's funny to me that an entry about a Radiohead song sparked all of this, but if you've ever listened to Radiohead, I think you'll get it.

Monday, June 21, 2010

The Overlook

I found a new place to camp in town. Well, I didn't find it. I was told by the fellow vagabonders I met a few days ago. At any rate, it overlooks "New Town" Ketchikan, called as such because it's built on the north side of this really steep ridge that used to make travelling from north to south very difficult. Now there's a tunnel and a road built on pilings around the side of it.

The view was grand. Enjoy this solstice.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

"Silence Lends a Face to the Soul"

This morning, I was going through some pictures and listening to some tunes on the party shuffle. A song by Saxon Shore came on called "Silence Lends A Face To The Soul". I turned it up real loud and just let the melody just drown me in all of the emotions that I feel annually on certain days, such as Fathers Day. I wish all fathers out there to have a day that reminds them of how lucky they are, how noble they must be, how generous, kind, yet stern and smart they learn through necessity.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

The Ketchikan Vagabond Community

Tonight I was approached by a couple, Gary and Debbie, who are vagabonding or boondocking like myself. They're friends of Earl, who, with his big dog "Hunter", lives in his camper here and over on Prince of Wales Island. I met him a few days ago. All were very kind. Gary said he and Debbie were harassed by someone at a public lot down by the laundromat here in town. It appears that I've been drafted as a part of a community watch, sharing stories and tips with fellow vagabonders. It's exciting! I wish I had a community like this when I was in Denver. What a great time, nonetheless. It's wonderful to feel free.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Blurred by Rain

As the light shines through the blurry windshield of my parked van, I look down and notice that my shirt seems to be melting away. While coincidentally complimentary to my contemplation, it stands as independently fascinating. The light from the nearby tower gently glows, and the steady, unhindered rain falls with a certain care that seems to nudge everyone into their cozy homes or homes away from home. I look up at the light and then out toward the trees, whose branches are still, heavier with the weight of the water that has fallen. At this late hour of ten o'clock, the darkness has yet to completely hide the clouds lingering over the all but distant mountains.

For now, I am in Ketchikan, Alaska, just outside the largest National Forest in the United States, the Tongass, where people have resided or passed through for hundreds, perhaps thousands of years. A team discovered remains on nearby Prince of Wales island that shared DNA markers with people of Chilean, Argentenian, and Peruvian descent, as well as one individual from mainland China. What a sight this area must have been when the waters were lower and the Bering Strait was a land bridge, when people migrated, walking miles and miles looking for a new home.

I hope that whatever I am doing in this BattleWagon, with these Chronicles, I am respecting and sharing in that same spirit, that I am looking for... something. The difference for me is that I will always have a home in a beautiful mountain valley with an angel looking over all of it's residents. I am not looking for that place. I am looking for stories to bring back with me. I am looking for adventure. I am looking for answers of a divine nature. I hope and also fear that this search will never end.

For now, however, I am content.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

KetchiKlouds

I was driving north on Tongass, the main road here in Ketchikan, after a nice visit with the house parent at the local Methodist Youth Hostel. I noticed some spectacular clouds (still light at 9:30 PM), so I had to snag a picture.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

The 6 A.M. Cruise Ship

Here we have the Zaandam, a ship of the Holland America Line. It looks to be the first ship here this morning. It's huge, but not the finest ship that's been here. Still, when a huge ship comes in, it is always something of awe to me, the guy who's grew up land-locked and never seen anything that big that moves.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

The Significance of the Raven

In Ketchikan, a raven's feather is as important as an eagles. I'd imagine it's like this in other parts of the world, too. Here I learned of the significance. Apparently, ravens are lost souls. They are people who have died and not been able to find their way to the afterlife. To mess with a raven is to inherit some of the sorrow the raven is facing in their attempt to break free. The details are absent from me right now, but the story is nice. The ravens here are almost as big as the bald eagles, and only slightly more numerous. What an amazing place to be.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

The Rain, The Blur

I sit here today, not knowing what to do with my time. I have relegated myself to a self-imposed solitude of reading and watching my surroundings. The rain has been coming in waves, not in coordination with the sun, who seems to be shining while the rain falls now. It's fifty-five degrees here, and I let the rain touch me, feeling as though I am subject to it's all-consuming reach.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

A Rainy Alaskan Morning

It's not pouring rain, and I wouldn't even call it a drizzle. At this point, it's maybe spitting? It's trying? Whatever you call it, this is more the norm that all of the sunshine here in Ketchikan, a place that averages between 152 and 180 inches of precipitation a year. It's so much easier to sleep with the rain gently tapping on the roof of the BattleWagon. It drowns out all of the potentially corrupiting noises of the outside world. I would guess it's like being in the womb.